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Cheap propane!


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#41 Doug7155

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:45 PM

Key West it's $5.24 a gallon.

#42 SkiBar414

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 07:46 PM

Back in November I was quoted at a local RV dealer it'd be about $45 to fill my 30# tank. Today while searching UHauls in the Milwaukee WISCONSIN area and Southeastern WI. area they list propane at $3.79 - 4.19/GAL!! Does propane really fluctuate like this or run like regular gas prices?! At this rate it may cost me more to camp then living in my residential home paying the WE Energies Gas Co.!! Current reg gas is about $3.65/gal. And is propane taxed like regular gas since I know WI has one of the highest gas tax.

#43 SkiBar414

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 08:10 PM

...After reading some of these Im thinking those really low prices only apply when purchasing in large quantities! I've updated some of the prices in my area on the website listed.

#44 bjh

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Posted 05 April 2013 - 12:15 PM

Tractor supply Augusta GA two 30lb tanks 32.75 for both and both were empty. The sign said 1.99 per gal.



#45 whj

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Posted 11 April 2013 - 09:27 AM

Last Saturday, $2.29 per gallon at Tractor Supply in Porter, Texas.



#46 MacNova

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Posted 12 April 2013 - 01:03 PM

Buying propane is a tricky game. You have to pay attention to what is being offered.

 

A Little About Propane Tanks

These "20 lb" tanks are designed to take 20 pounds of propane. They can actually fit another 20% in the tank, but that extra space is designed for expansion as the temperature changes.

 

propane-tare-weight.jpg

 

All propane tanks have a "tare weight" or "T.W." stamped on the collar of the tank. For a grill sized tank you simply calculate the tare weight + 20 lbs, and that's how much the tank should weigh when it's full. Most 20 lb tanks have a tare weight of +/- 17 pounds when completely empty. This means a "full" propane tank should weigh about 37 pounds.

The Math on Refills at Costco

Internet searches suggest the following:

  • 1 gallon of propane weighs 4.2 pounds
  • A "full" 20 lb cylinder should have 4.7 gallons or propane in it

I called around and the local U-Haul place wanted $16 for a refill. I remember Costco has a sign for $9.99 refills. I thought I was getting a great deal, but it turns out I pretty much got no deal.

 

costco-20-lb-propane-tank-fill-receipts.

 

Costco is a bit deceiving because they first hand you a slip that says "20 lb cylinder". When you pay inside the receipt says "20lb PROPANE", and the filling print out says "Cylinder: 20S lbs." The only defense is that the filling print out is honest and says "3.6 gallons". However, nobody knows off the top of their head that a propane tank is supposed to have 4.7 gallons to be considered "full". By saying 3.6 gallons, they are masking the fact that they put in 75%. If they wanted to be upfront they'd say "we will put 15 lbs of propane into this 20 lb cylinder".

This means Costco puts in 15 lb of propane.

 

costco-propane-refill-full-tank-weight.j


3.6 gallons / 4.7 gallons = 75% of the normal fill.

or, said another way

(4.2 pounds/gallons) * (3.6 gallons) = 15 pounds

The word on the web forums is that the Blue Rhino and AmeriGas similar exchange services put in 75%, or 15 lbs.

If you do the math on Costco, it's actually not a bad price. It's in line, if not cheaper, than paying $16 for a full 20 lbs. Though, Costco's use of the "20 lb" phrase is unfortunate. I think their motivation is to have a cheaper price, so members think they are getting a great deal. Plus, by only filling 75% they make members come back more often, and go inside to shop while they wait.

Conclusion

  • If you're looking for the best price, owning a propane tank and re-filling it is going to be cheaper than using an exchange service. As always, you pay a premium for convenience.
  • Ask how much propane is going into the cylinder. There should be 20 pounds going in for full capacity.
  • Weigh the tank when you get home and
  • How much should the tank weigh?
    38 lbs. for a full 20 lb. size propane tank, 18 lbs. if empty.
    54 lbs. for a full 30 lb. size propane tank, 24 lbs. if empty.
    70 lbs. for a full 40 lb. size propane tank, 29 lbs. if empty..
  • Costco's propane price is still fair when you do the math. They are not cheating you your just thinking apples when your being billed for oranges.
  • So be careful of "Deals" From not only Costco but all discounters.

Edited by MacNova, 12 April 2013 - 01:09 PM.


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#47 smokeyjo

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 10:30 PM

Bretz  RV dealership in Missoula, MT sells propane for $0.99 per gallon from March - September. Best deal I have ever seen. I can get my 40 lb. tanks filled for under $10. They have to take a loss but I guess it gets people into the dealership to look at RVs!


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#48 DRTDEVL

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Posted 20 May 2013 - 06:18 AM

Camping World in El Paso sells propane to Good Sam members on Tuesday and Wednesday for $1.99/gal.  Regular price is $3.59 for Good Sam members and $3.99 to the general public.

This savings alone can pay the Good Sam membership, especially if you have one close by.  I think its the best deal within 100 miles of my house, so I fill up there on the way out of town on trips.


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#49 Larry 1190

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Posted 20 May 2013 - 02:00 PM

Campers World in Lake City, Florida filled (2) 40 gal tank for me last month at $1.99/ gal. I also am a Good Sams Member.



#50 mockturtle

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Posted 20 May 2013 - 04:40 PM

I just paid $1.90/gallon at Uhlmann's in Centralia, WA.


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#51 BigSilver

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Posted 30 May 2013 - 08:23 PM

MacNova,

Costco's are different here. They pumped my tank full, I watched them do it and gave me a metered ticket which I took into the tire department and paid $1.99 per gallon plus tax. I believe the total was 4.46 gallons, so the tank was not quite empty. I paid for exactly what they put in the tank, not a fix fee for a 20# tank like the Costco by you did.

#52 mopips

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Posted 01 June 2013 - 02:57 PM

Just filled my RV tanks at All American Propane in Yakima, Wa. for $2.00 per gal.


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#53 dzwiss

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Posted 31 August 2013 - 11:38 AM

Tillimook RV Repair in Tillimook, OR is $1.70 per gallon this year, up $.20 from last summer.


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#54 bobsallyh

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Posted 01 September 2013 - 08:41 AM

Propane is one of four of my favorite price watches. When we first get to a location, I check prices on diesel fuel, ice cream, 30 packs of Natural Light/Bud Light.(You know priorities) In the last month or so here is the pricing on propane in our travels. First fill since leaving Yuma ($1.91 Gal all winter) was in the Bozeman, MT. area. Kenyon-Noble (building supply) had a "sale" on propane advertised in their sales folder: $1.99 gal, regular price $3.28 gal. So as we made a grocery etc. run into the Belgrade/Bozeman area I stopped at Kenyon-Noble's location in Belgrade. Told "sorry the pump is broken". Then over to their Bozeman location, not very far from Belgrade. Went inside to pay the bill and of course the printer put out a fancy sales slip that ended up being $13.13 for the 30 pounder. Gal at the counter said "you got a buy since it was on sale". I told her that I wouldn't be there at $3.28 a gallon and got that deer in the headlight look. Then onto the Kalispell, MT. area. Of course Costco there pumps propane but we aren't members. So Northern Energy, a propane supplier, has "Terrific Tuesdays" at $2.00 a gallon, normally $2.28. Next stop was Libby, MT. On one end of town the same Northern Energy outfit that is in Kalispell, which is usally the high price leader in Libby didn't disappoint. A call to them and was told an empty 30 pounder would be $24.00. No thanks, says me. So we stop at the opposite end of town, a very friendly convinence store that pumps 7 days a week during business hours. Cost was $16.69 and a smile with a thank you. Too bad other states don't make propane pumpers post their price out front as Arizona does, just like gas stations.

#55 pinger

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Posted 01 September 2013 - 10:35 AM

Just filled at SKP park in Sutherlin,Or  for $1.65/gal


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#56 chiefneon

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 07:37 AM

Howdy!

Our travels this summer have been in the Maritimes. We've spent the last three months in Newfoundland. Propane here is expensive, and we've used quite a bit. Here it cost me $60.00 to have a 40# tank filled. When we return to the good old USA next month as always after traveling in Canada I'll feel like I got a pay raise.

"Happy Trails"
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Edited by chiefneon, 02 September 2013 - 07:38 AM.

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#57 richfaa

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 11:02 AM

We do not use much during the summer months, Last time we filled a tank was at the FJ/Pilot on US 27, Haines city ,Fla where we refill during the winter. I note today the listed price at that station is 3.099 per gallon less the .10 per gal discount on out Rv plus card. It appears the price has not gone up since April of this year.
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#58 bobsallyh

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 03:22 PM

We just went past a convenience store at the junction of US 26 (Yellowstone Hi-way) and Hitt Rd. in Idaho Falls, ID and the propane sign said $1.84 Gal.



#59 bobsallyh

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Posted 21 September 2013 - 07:59 AM

I was in the Henderson, NV. Camping World yesterday and was talking to the checkout clerk. She told me that on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at the other Camping World on Las Vegas Bvld. (former Wheeler RV sales) propane $1.99 a gallon. They don't pump propane at the Henderson location.



#60 StarDreamers.us

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 05:46 PM

I was reading that LP was going to be cheaper this year. I have not seen it so far. Where is all the LP gas going that they are now pumping??

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