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Can propane liquify inside the tank during temperature changes and therefore have proplems dispensing

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Propane is liquid in your tank. The vapor pressure will depend on the temperature as you can see by the following chart. For an example at 0F the vapor pressure in the tank would be 24.5 psig. and at 90F it would be 150psig. This is why you draw vapor from the top of the tank and then go immediately go through a high pressure regulator. Then usually at the appliance there is also a regulator (sometimes incorporated in the safety valve) You are burning propane as a vapor not a liquid. Remember for safety that propane vapor is heavier than air and sinks to the floor, so one must be careful for proper ventilation.
Temperature vs Vapor Pressure
(oF) (oC) (psig) (bar)
-44 1) -42.2 0 0
-30 -34.4 6.8 0.5
-20 -28.9 11.5 0.8
-10 -23.3 17.5 1.2
0 - 17.8 24.5 1.7
10 -12.2 34 2.3
20 -6.7 42 2.9
30 -1.1 53 3.7
40 4.4 65 4.5
50 10.0 78 5.4
60 15.6 93 6.4
70 21.1 110 7.6
80 26.7 128 8.8
90 32.2 150 10.3
100 37.8 177 12.2
110 43.3 204 14.1

Posted on Nov 08, 2010

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RV water heaters are mounted against an outside wall. Go outside and look for a removable cover that has a mesh vent installed.
Open this cover and the water heater should be inside.

If the water heater is propane your propane tank may be low of fuel. Also very cold weather may not let the propane produce adequate vapor to fuel the water heater. A low level of propane can make this problem worse.

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Last year we had all the siding on our tv, trailer, replaced due to hail damage. When we finally got our trailer back from the rv repair shop we have had nothing but problems with our Atwood hot water tank...


Immediate danger!
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The floor can be covered and ignite and you will not smell it while standing or sitting or laying in bed.
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Rick, if the tank is normally plumbed for a horizontal position, and you have it standing vertically, then you are feeding liquid propane to your pilot light, hence the frosted hose etc., and a tendency for the pilot light to go out as it has too rich of a fuel to burn. There should be no vent to allow air in as propane is pressurized, and only attains zero pressure at 40 below zero farenheit. The valve you speak of should have been the liquid vent valve which is used during filling only, and is closed during any other use. Your supply valve should be in the wide open position. The pressure relief valve is only operational when the tank has been overfilled or overheated. You should have a pressure regulator between the tank and the appliance you are trying operate. Hope this helped. Marvin

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The tankless water heaters require larger gas supply lines because of the on-demand consumption. While I don't know your units rating, most Propane Tankless Waterheaters require 2" supply lines. Moreover, pressure is directly related to temperature which sounds like your problem entirely; consider the run of the gas pipe from the tank and the ambient temperature. Now you see why plumbing is a hard profession to fake... =)

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