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Old 01-14-2019, 08:27 AM   #1
Phantom
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Default Blue Rhino

Just an observation I made this weekend & thought I would share...…….. not looking for a debate or rationale-- - simply "Buyer Beware"

Although not the most cost effective method, we have been using Blue Rhino refillable propane tanks for the past few seasons for the convenience they provide. Primarily because they are available at many locations, seven days a week, most anytime during the day/night.

This weekend I took note of the fact that within 2 miles of each other there was upward of a $7.00 price variation for tank exchanges!! To me, I find a $7.00 swing (48%) to be quite substantial for essentially a franchised product.

Walmart - $14.55

Mobil/Shaws - $20.21

Citgo/Airport - $21.55
(the above may be off by a few cents as I am going from memory)
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:26 AM   #2
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With rare exception, everything is always cheaper at Walmart.
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:29 AM   #3
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Plus you can get noodles and cheap waders!

You are paying for convenience at a gas station. You can fill your gas tank and grab an LP refill rather quickly, instead of dealing with the "people of Walmart", otherwise known as Walmartians!
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:31 AM   #4
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I'd look at those refills similar to the cost of gas from station to station even if they are peddling the same brand name and are in the same relative proximity.

Like anything markups vary, capitalism hard at work I suppose.
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:32 AM   #5
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Default Many options

That is good information. It is interesting to see how much less it is at WalMart. No one can argue (I think) that when buying at WalMart the quality is not as good.

You can go on Blue Rhino's website and find all the places that carry it near you. Unfortunately, the site does not have the cost.

https://bluerhino.com/propane-finder

A couple of other local stores and prices:

Lowe's $19.97 5% off if you use a Lowes Credit Card

Hannaford $19.99
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:36 AM   #6
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It costs about $12 to have one filled at Uhaul or your local hardware store and they actually fill it all the way to the top and not only 75% like the blue rhino swap. I get the convenience thing but I just have 2 tanks so I can always have a full one in my shed ready to go.
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Old 01-14-2019, 10:14 AM   #7
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Trustworthy does it for $14 I believe
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Old 01-14-2019, 10:29 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by burgerunh View Post
It costs about $12 to have one filled at Uhaul or your local hardware store and they actually fill it all the way to the top and not only 75% like the blue rhino swap. I get the convenience thing but I just have 2 tanks so I can always have a full one in my shed ready to go.
Propane tanks are only filled to 80% of capacity due to allowing for expansion.
I really doubt any business is filling them 100%.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:08 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by burgerunh View Post
It costs about $12 to have one filled at Uhaul or your local hardware store and they actually fill it all the way to the top and not only 75% like the blue rhino swap. I get the convenience thing but I just have 2 tanks so I can always have a full one in my shed ready to go.
Same here. I go to Uhaul and yes they fill completely. Costs me about $12 to refill which is quick and easy.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:37 AM   #10
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Same here. I go to Uhaul and yes they fill completely. Costs me about $12 to refill which is quick and easy.
You think it's filled "completely" but it's not still more than Blue Rhino though. I've asked before at Aubuchon.
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Old 01-14-2019, 12:00 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Shreddy View Post
Same here. I go to Uhaul and yes they fill completely. Costs me about $12 to refill which is quick and easy.
Propane tanks legally cannot be filled completely, you must leave room in the tank for expansion and contraction. That being said it is still cheaper to refill than it is to use Blue Rhino
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Old 01-14-2019, 12:07 PM   #12
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As I said at the onset ..not looking for a debate or rationale-- - simply "Buyer Beware"

I am fully aware that you can get a propane tank refilled at the local hardware store / U Haul / etc. for an average of $12-$14 .. As also stated, I know in advance that these programs (be it Blue Rhino or AmeriGas) are not the most cost effective --- but from convenience standpoint, I can run out in the evening or on a Sunday morning when all those mentioned standard refill locations are closed. And, as a bonus, I do not have to be concerned with my tank expiring ( which isn't the highest priority on my list either).

I was simply SHOCKED at the $7.00 swing


P.S. -- you do not have to wait in the busy checkout lines at Wallmart - simply go straight to the Customer Service desk !


.

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Old 01-14-2019, 12:07 PM   #13
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I purchase my tanks new retail.

Then have them refilled as needed.

All of mine no matter what age look new.

Obviously, there is a time/date limit on all.
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Old 01-14-2019, 12:09 PM   #14
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The exchange places fill the tanks with 15 pounds of propane. When you get a tank refilled they fill them to 20 pounds. More gas for the same or lower price.
Some places (Tractor Supply in Ossipee) will charge by the gallon. Good for when you just want to make sure you're topped off.
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Old 01-14-2019, 12:30 PM   #15
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Agree with Lakefan and others. When you have them filled yourself you get more gas. The place I typically use fills them to 18lbs and only charges for what they put in the tank.
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Old 01-14-2019, 01:04 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lake Fan View Post
The exchange places fill the tanks with 15 pounds of propane. When you get a tank refilled they fill them to 20 pounds. More gas for the same or lower price.
Some places (Tractor Supply in Ossipee) will charge by the gallon. Good for when you just want to make sure you're topped off.
Propane tanks have an overfill Protection Device. It acts like a float and will close the valve when it reaches 4.0 gallons of propane. Therefore you will never get a complete full tank. 17-18 lbs is the max you will get.
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Old 01-14-2019, 01:09 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
Propane tanks are only filled to 80% of capacity due to allowing for expansion.
I really doubt any business is filling them 100%.
If they do fill it to 100% you'll be able to see how the relief valve works as soon as the propane warms and expands!
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Old 01-14-2019, 01:49 PM   #18
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If they do fill it to 100% you'll be able to see how the relief valve works as soon as the propane warms and expands!
Did you Google that Steve or are you speaking from experience again???!!!
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Old 01-14-2019, 01:58 PM   #19
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https://www.amerigas.com/amerigas-bl...cent-fill-rule
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Old 01-14-2019, 02:16 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by swnoel View Post
If they do fill it to 100% you'll be able to see how the relief valve works as soon as the propane warms and expands!
YUP..BOOM!
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Old 01-15-2019, 08:00 AM   #21
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My gas grill is hooked up to my 500 gal home propane.....very easy to do.
Big savings over the 20lb tanks and you never run out in the middle of a cook out.
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Old 01-15-2019, 09:12 AM   #22
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Default Shutting off after each use

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My gas grill is hooked up to my 500 gal home propane.....very easy to do.
Big savings over the 20lb tanks and you never run out in the middle of a cook out.
Do you shut off gas after each use? Valve at tank or grill? How far is tank from your grill location? Just curious. I only have a 120 gal tank, but I'm guessing the principle is the same.

Dave
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Old 01-15-2019, 09:21 AM   #23
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Do you shut off gas after each use? Valve at tank or grill? How far is tank from your grill location? Just curious. I only have a 120 gal tank, but I'm guessing the principle is the same.

Dave
I had one installed when I built the house. The BBQ is about 50 feet from the tanke and the line is run from the tank to a valve near the BBQ with a shut off and then from the valve to the BBQ
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Old 01-15-2019, 10:33 AM   #24
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best option is to have a few tanks and have them filled at a place that charges by the gallon. even a fairly cheap filling place is no deal if they charge a flat rate and your tank is not completely empty.
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Old 01-15-2019, 10:52 AM   #25
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Default ...... propane NO .... electric YES

You know, if you are smart like me, you will just totally lose that big, ugly, dirty propane grill, and go get a small electric, 110v plug-in from Walmart.com for like $50-100 ……. never deal with that dangerous, flammable, volatile, explosive liquid propane gas …. plus have a smaller, easier to use, outdoor grill that has three out of four sections which be cleaned in the dish washer.


To protect it from the rain, snow, sun and hail …. use an upside down plastic cover like a cat litter box, or a smallish bin, or storage box.


Electric is so much better than propane ….. for grill'n ….. faster to turn on, easier to keep clean which makes it safer to use ….. no portable steel container cylinders of propane ….. which is more volatile than gasoline!


Welcome to 2019 …… 'living better with electricity that's wired right inside your home' ….. originally, a tv-promo line from 1959!
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Old 01-15-2019, 10:56 AM   #26
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I went back to charcoal years ago.
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Old 01-15-2019, 10:58 AM   #27
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I went back to charcoal years ago.
I use, gas, wood and charcoal
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Old 01-15-2019, 10:59 AM   #28
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What you push to your heater/gas grill is GAS, not a liquid. What they put in the tank is LIQUID.

The reason you do not fill a tank 100% is that you need space on top of the liquid for the liquid to 'flash' to gas and then said gas is pulled off that to burn.

If a tank is at 100% you have a flamethrower, not a source of gas.

The OPD (Overfill Protection Device) is a float not unlike what is in your toilet that is designed to not let the liquid get into your lines if the liquid gets too close to the outlet.

Old propane tanks dod not have that. You could actually turn them upside down and refill small green camping stove tanks with an adapter hose.

To the person asking if they can run their furnace off of a 20lb tank if the big torpedo goes dry? Yes, maybe,,, sometimes.

Reason being is that depending on the BTU of the heater, it requires a certain amount of gas per second to be 'flashed' off the liquid in the tank. Bigger tanks have a bigger surface area to 'flash'. As long as your burner does not exceed the flash capacity of the tank, it will run fine as long as your regulator and lines are kept somewhat warm. You see, flashing creates cold (that's how an A/C unit works with Freon) and as your smaller tanks will be flashing faster than a big tank, they will create considerably more cold. More cold to the point of the lines and regulator can turn ice up.
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Old 01-15-2019, 11:15 AM   #29
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I went back to charcoal years ago.
Yes …. well …. 20,000 years ago, many of the remaining Neanderthal cave men in central Europe were making the switch from burning firewood to burning charcoal ….. so that's a smart move!
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Old 01-15-2019, 11:23 AM   #30
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Yes . well . 20,000 years ago, many of the remaining Neanderthal cave men in central Europe were making the switch from burning firewood to burning charcoal .. so that's a smart move!
Just the thought that we have anything in common is disturbing.
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Old 01-15-2019, 11:38 AM   #31
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Who extremely close to Moultonborough charges for the amount put in?
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Old 01-15-2019, 02:47 PM   #32
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Who extremely close to Moultonborough charges for the amount put in?
I think Aubuchon might, but I can't remember--I get a whole summer out of one tank, though now I'm trying to wonder how...

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Old 01-15-2019, 03:02 PM   #33
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…………. -I get a whole summer out of one tank, though now I'm trying to wonder how...
You need to stop going out to eat ?


>
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Old 01-15-2019, 03:36 PM   #34
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You need to stop going out to eat ?
Hmmm...maybe. Of course, we're only up for weekends...

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Old 01-15-2019, 04:31 PM   #35
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I think Aubuchon might, but I can't remember--I get a whole summer out of one tank, though now I'm trying to wonder how...

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Aubuchon in Meredith charges a flat fee at least they did last year when I filled a 100 pounder there.
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Old 01-16-2019, 08:49 AM   #36
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Do you shut off gas after each use? Valve at tank or grill? How far is tank from your grill location? Just curious. I only have a 120 gal tank, but I'm guessing the principle is the same.

Dave
Yes...there is a shut off valve installed at the entrance.The tank is 50' away but the line to the grill comes from the entrance to the house so it's much closer
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