Propane’s usefulness is undeniable: from powering up home heaters to making outdoor appliances work. However, other than being helpful, it can be quite dangerous too. Most especially if the tanks are treated with no safety. Aside from proper usage, proper storage is also necessary. Certain safety measures should be noted, such as in selecting a propane storage rack, where the storage is done, and many others.
Tanks are not recommended to be stored indoors at all costs. Instead, they should be stored outdoors, with no nearby source of ignition or flame. It’s best to have them as far away from the main house, with less traffic or activity. Likewise, there should also be proper ventilation. Racks with lockable doors is recommended, to ensure that only you or other authorized persons got access to the stored units.
Consider where you install the rack itself. The surface should be dry and firm, preferably out of concrete. Keep the tanks away from areas where they can gather moisture or water. If not, rusting can occur and eventually damage the tanks. Such will make them quite unsafe for use after some time. Immediately paint areas where there are early signs of rusting. Off white, silver or light gray are some recommendable colors.
Keep the cylinders from hitting each other. Whether you’re placing them in the rack for storage, or taking them out for usage. Likewise, keep them from unnecessarily hitting hard against the ground. In cases of falling off from the rack, inspect the tank thoroughly to make sure it’s safe to be used. Parts such as the relief valve should be intact and free of leakage. Place soapy water on such areas when doubtful. Bubbles will form if there’s leaking vapor.
Other than closely inspecting the cylinders, the rack should also be examined. See to it that every part is properly installed. If there are beams that are missing or bent, or there are welded areas that are damaged, repair should be done right away. If not, the cylinders will soon come crashing to the ground and to each other. Such instance can pose quite a danger to both your property and persons nearby. Replacement of seriously damaged storage rack should be done right away.
Racks have load limits to be followed. Read the user’s manual or the product’s specifications to make sure you’re not placing tanks beyond what the rack can support. When adding extra shelves on top of existing ones, it’s necessary that you’re aware how much weight can only be added. If not sure, it’s better to go below its limit than to go beyond it.
Racks are structured to hold tanks in a horizontal fashion. Make sure that the relief valve is in direct contact with the vapor space when placing the tank on the rack. This is important because in cases of leakage, it’s the vapor that will escape. The liquid part escaping is more dangerous. The relief valve may be in direct contact with the liquid part instead when stored improperly.
Using the right propane storage rack, inspecting the location where it’s placed, etc. Are not only the safety measures you need to practice. It’s also necessary that you use only appliances that are approved for use with propane, and has passed strict standards. Likewise, the line connections should be secure, and free from obstacles and leaks.