Why Isn’t My Propane Tank 100% Full After a Delivery?

Safe propane delivery companies never fill aboveground tanks more than 80%.

propane tank Apex, NC Propane is the kind of home fuel that doesn’t have an “off-season.” Right now, our Apex-based propane delivery team is busy on the road delivering fuel for pool heaters, outdoor kitchens, water heaters and other home appliances and amenities. In cooler weather, many homes fall back on propane appliances for space heating. At LG Jordan Oil & Gas, we are completely committed to keeping your propane tank filled all year round.

Every now and then, we hear from a customer who notices that their propane tank gauge doesn’t read 100% after a propane delivery. This is standard procedure for all reputable propane companies. Allow us to explain why our aboveground tank fills don’t go above 80%.

How to Read a Propane Tank Gauge

Let’s begin by discussing how you can check your propane tank levels.

Your propane tank gauge is generally located under a dome situated on top of the tank. The gauge looks a bit like your car’s speedometer, and you will see numbers from 5 to 95. These numbers tell you the percentage fill of your tank, not how many gallons are in there. So, if the gauge on your 250-gallon propane tank reads 50, you have roughly 125 gallons of fuel.

Understanding How Propane Expands and Contracts

Just like water, propane expands and contracts when temperatures rise or fall. However, propane’s volume (the amount of space it occupies) grows 17 times more than water’s with the same temperature increase.

Your propane tank’s gauge uses a float to measure how much space the fuel inside occupies. This means that the gauge reading can be impacted by outdoor temperatures. If we fill a tank to 80% on a hot day, and temperatures drop considerably in the evening, the tank’s gauge may read well below 80, even though the number of gallons in the tank hasn’t changed.

The 80% Propane Fill Rule

This brings us to why the gauge on your aboveground propane tank never reads 100%, even after a propane delivery. All responsible propane companies follow the “80% fill rule,” where we leave 20% of the aboveground tank empty to account for the expansion of propane. It’s an essential safety precaution to prevent a dangerous buildup of tank pressure on hot afternoons.

(Underground propane tanks are a little less susceptible to heat fluctuations, so they can be filled a bit more.)

And remember: we only charge you for the propane that goes into your tank. You aren’t paying for the empty space.

LG Jordan — Unbeatable Propane Delivery to NC Households

How would you like to receive dependable, professional propane delivery without even needing to contact your energy provider? LG Jordan Oil & Gas offers FREE automatic delivery to our customers in Wake, Chatham and the surrounding five-county area. We’ll use your customer profile and the current weather patterns to determine when you’ll need more fuel and schedule your propane delivery in advance. Want up-to-the-minute info about your tank levels wherever you are? We also offer wireless propane tank monitoring.

Join the LG Jordan family of customers. We’re ready to start serving your household today.