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LEL

Propane use while traveling

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Hello!  I have tried to research the subject outlined in my title and have walked away from the experience even more confused.  Why can't life be just a little more simple I am left wondering....  Anyways, my husband and I are traveling across three states over a three day period to get to our final destination. Can we run the refrigerator on propane across New Mexico, Arizona and California as we travel?  I have tried to look up the information regarding this issue via www.mvd.newmexico.gov and https://azdot.gov and https://dmv.ca.gov and after reading in circles I am no better informed than when I started. I have watched Youtube videos until I want to throw the phone across the room...  Okay, not really, however I have watched many and they all seems to be opinions rather than the record of law.  Can anyone help me?  I would sure appreciate it!  THANK YOU! :)

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This is a popular topic that has been discussed many times. And has generally not resulted in a clear consensus.

Recent Discussion

FWIW - We've RV'd for about 20 years, with the last 8+ full time and have run the reefer on propane while on the road the entire time. Through each of the states you mentioned...

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26 minutes ago, LEL said:

….. Why can't life be just a little more simple I am left wondering....  

It is simple, its your RV & your life, so you get to decide whether to turn the propane on while driving. Just like you get to decide where & when to drive, cross the street, go for a hike, go kayaking, go bungee jumping, etc. They all involve some degree of risk. If you're the type who needs to obey all safety rules to the full extent, then you'll be sitting at home a lot.  Driving with the propane on involves some risk if you have a crash and break a propane line. If your sys is in good shape, inspected for leaks regularly and you turn it off at gas stations, then the risk is minimal.  Just as I wouldn't tell you that bungee jumping is 100% safe, I wouldn't tell you that driving with the propane on is 100% safe. But lots of us have been doing it for many years.  

You should also experiment with how many degrees your frig will lose in a day of driving. For most RV frig's its about 4-5 degrees in an 8 hr day. But more everytime you open the frig. So driving with it off is not a major problem for most, unless you're driving across the Mojave Desert during summer. If you have an onboard genny, another option is to run the frig on the genny each time you stop for a break, then turn it off again while driving. lots of options and you get to make the choice

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If it is hot, we will have the genny going, for the A/C and will run the fridge on it.   Even in 90° weather, our fridge will only go up 3-4 degrees during a 4 hour drive.  We have it on about 1/2 the time, off the other half - because we've filled up in the morning and I have shut it off before fueling and forget to turn it back on.  Since we only travel about 4 hours and usually don't open the fridge door, not a problem for us.   

 

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What I understand from your post is; it is legal, yes it is legal. Some tunnels have a restriction to turn off all propane supply to appliances, they have signage when approaching the tunnel.  RV appliances that operate from propane are designed for use while driving by the mfgr. As previously stated, it's entirely your choice whether you want to do so.

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Thanks for the replies!  I just wanted to make a informed decision in regards to my topic. Take care! :)

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In our three years of full-timing we drove through all 48 contiguous states. The only time we turned off our propane was for the Chesapeake Bay Tunnel which required it.

But, I hated hunting for propane so on my snowbird rig I didn't have any propane at all.

Linda Sand

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10 hours ago, Barbaraok said:

If it is hot, we will have the genny going, for the A/C and will run the fridge on it.   Even in 90° weather, our fridge will only go up 3-4 degrees during a 4 hour drive.  We have it on about 1/2 the time, off the other half - because we've filled up in the morning and I have shut it off before fueling and forget to turn it back on.  Since we only travel about 4 hours and usually don't open the fridge door, not a problem for us.   

2

That pretty well sums up our action as well. The fact is that the system was designed to be safely used while traveling. Consider what you will do if you should ever travel with your RV ready for use in subfreezing weather. You then need to keep some heat on and that means using propane for your furnace. It isn't 100% risk-free, but neither is anything that we do. The most dangerous fuel that most of us travel with is gasoline. 

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We have always traveled with the propane on, including 12 years as fulltimers.  The only time we had to turn it off was when we boarded a ferry or when we're having the propane tank refilled (at a gas station, we just turn off the refrigerator).  And, as already mentioned, there are some tunnels where it is required (as far as I am aware, they're all back East).

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I've run mine non-stop for years.  The only answer to this question is to do what you  feel comfortable with.  I don't even turn it off at gas stations.

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46 minutes ago, RV_ said:

Here is my research done in conjunction with the world renowned propane and propane hardware expert, Ed Lee Sr.

http://home.earthlink.net/~derekgore/rvroadiervfulltimingwhatisitreallylike/id42.html

Do whatever you feel comfortable with. Facts in the link.

Just the facts ma'am....just the facts please! :) Thank you so much for the link.  It is very informative!  Good evening to you. 

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YW LEL! And welcome to the Escapees Forums. The best place for knowledge and camaraderie with other serious RVrs.

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I leave mine on while traveling, however, when I take the ferry, they require it to be turned off with orange tags on the valves.

David

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I think you are way too concerned about propane on or off,  in 11+ years the only time this was ever checked was before going over/under the Chesapeake Bay bridge and tunnel.  They required it be turned off for the tunnel.  We have never traveled with it on after a Life On Wheels course back in 2007 when they recommended traveling with it off for safety reasons.  We now have a residential fridge and no inverter, we have traveled 8 to 10 hours in FL and AL summer heat and the fridge and freezer contents always stay cold and frozen.....and my wife is picky about food quality.  Many of our friends travel with their propane on and have no problems either.  I'd recommend you do whatever you want.        Greg    

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