5lb vs 11lb propane tank

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HoffmanMark

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Just curious as to which size everyone carries. I’m trying to decide between the two. In the next couple of weeks I’m started my drawer system build for the back of my ‘04 4RNR. I will also be installing a 2nd battery system and fridge in the back on top of the drawer system. The ultimate question is if a 5lb tank would last for a 7-10 day trip?
 
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RoarinRow

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I would think it would depend on your usage? Do you think you'd be using it for each meal, x3 day? What kinds of meals, how long you'd think it takes to make the meal with the propane, etc. I use my 5lb tank on and off for about 10 minutes each time and it last at least a month or so.
 
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HoffmanMark

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I usually cook breakfast and dinners. Depending on what dinner is the gas is on and off for 20-30min depending on what’s is being cooked. Thank for your input!
 

RoarinRow

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I usually cook breakfast and dinners. Depending on what dinner is the gas is on and off for 20-30min depending on what’s is being cooked. Thank for your input!
Unfortunately I don't have any person experience being out 7-10 days with my little 5lb'r cooking 2-3 meals for 20-30 min each time but I would probably have another one as backup unless anyone here can state otherwise... Seem like a lot of use for that size?
 
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Thomas B

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I carry a 5 pound tank. A tank that size should easily last you 10 days if you're just using it for cooking. I've probably camped at least 20 days since I last refilled mine and it still has plenty of gas in it.

One pound of propane equals approximately 20,000 BTUs. I have a 10,000 BTU stove. I rarely turn my stove on full blast unless I'm trying to boil water very quickly. I guess in general I'm using around 5,000 BTUs or less at anytime.

I believe tanks are generally filled to about 80% capacity. So a 5 pound tank would actually be "full" with 4 pounds of propane. This would be approximately 80,000 BTUs. So running at 5,000 BTUs implies around 16 hours of use. That should be more than enough for 10 days of cooking.

Recommend you pick up a gauge as well for the tank. It's helpful to know when it's almost time to refill.

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MegaBug

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My suggestion is to have two smaller tanks rather than one bigger one. It's always tough knowing how much you have left in your tank and there's nothing worse than running out in the middle of your steak!! It's also embarrassing when you go to fill it and it is still 3/4 full :-) I primarily use one at a time and just fill whatever has run out when I get home. I will however use my backup when I want to set up my portable BBQ on a picnic table, and it is easier to grab than my main tank. I have a propane stove, BBQ and furnace so opted for two 10lb tanks on my trailer, and these last almost forever!
 

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My suggestion is to have two smaller tanks rather than one bigger one. It's always tough knowing how much you have left in your tank and there's nothing worse than running out in the middle of your steak!! It's also embarrassing when you go to fill it and it is still 3/4 full :-) I primarily use one at a time and just fill whatever has run out when I get home. I will however use my backup when I want to set up my portable BBQ on a picnic table, and it is easier to grab than my main tank. I have a propane stove, BBQ and furnace so opted for two 10lb tanks on my trailer, and these last almost forever!
I hadn’t thought of that but that’s a really great idea. No guessing and then you’re not wasting gas refilling early.
 
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Motomikeca

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I carry a 5 pound tank. A tank that size should easily last you 10 days if you're just using it for cooking. I've probably camped at least 20 days since I last refilled mine and it still has plenty of gas in it.

One pound of propane equals approximately 20,000 BTUs. I have a 10,000 BTU stove. I rarely turn my stove on full blast unless I'm trying to boil water very quickly. I guess in general I'm using around 5,000 BTUs or less at anytime.

I believe tanks are generally filled to about 80% capacity. So a 5 pound tank would actually be "full" with 4 pounds of propane. This would be approximately 80,000 BTUs. So running at 5,000 BTUs implies around 16 hours of use. That should be more than enough for 10 days of cooking.

Recommend you pick up a gauge as well for the tank. It's helpful to know when it's almost time to refill.

View attachment 174511
Those gauges work great, I have them on all my tanks. 5 pound tanks go a long ways but when your out your out, always a good idea to carry a spare on longer trips even if it is a few Colman 1 pounders with a adaptor.
 
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Alanymarce

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We carried two 16 oz tanks - one in use, one for when the first one ran out. We cooked on these about half the time during our last big trip (2 people, dinner only + coffee in the mornings). We used two and a half tanks in 150 days camping. A 5 lb tank is more than enough, an 11 lb tank would last us 22 months!
 
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