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Reading a Propane Tank Gauge

We’re getting down to business! We’re giving you a simple how-to for the next time you take a look at your tank gauge before calling us for delivery or service. Knowing how to read your fuel gauge will help accurately relay the information to one of our Customer Care Representatives on the other end.

It’s a common misconception that the gauge shows the total amount of gallons in the tank. However, it actually displays the propane level as a percentage of the capacity of your tank.

While not every propane tank has the same gauge, they all have the same purpose in mind: to show you how much propane is in your tank. Most tank gauges are “float gauges” (much like a fuel gauge in a vehicle – think pop pop’s old truck!), which reads the level of liquid propane in the tank by the floating arm. This does so by a float assembly that is within the tank and controls the arm gauge. While the level drops, the float gauge will also.

Check out the images below for a few examples of some different fuel gauges you might see:

Using example B. as our spotlight, notice how the floating arm is at 40%.

Taking this a step further, using that 40% from Example B, we can figure out just how much propane is left in your tank based on your tank size and gauge reading we’ve just done. KEEP THIS HANDY – you’re going to thank us for this one! To make life simpler and spare you from doing the math, we’ve put together a handy chart that is a great quick glance at how many gallons you have left:

Gauge Reading:      120-Gal. Tank      250-Gal. Tank      500-Gal. Tank      1,000-Gal. Tank

                    80%                 96 gallons              200 gallons           400 gallons               800 gallons

                    70%                 84 gallons             175 gallons           350 gallons                700 gallons

                    60%                 72 gallons             150 gallons            300 gallons               600 gallons

                    50%                 60 gallons             125 gallons            250 gallons               500 gallons

                    40%                48 gallons            100 gallons          200 gallons              400 gallons

                    30%                36 gallons                75 gallons            150 gallons               300 gallons

                    20%                24 gallons                50 gallons            100 gallons               200 gallons

                    10%                12 gallons                 25 gallons            50 gallons                 100 gallons

If calculating your fuel level isn’t something you want to take on, consider our Automatic Fuel Delivery option. We’ll monitor your fuel usage using our tried-and-true formula which accounts for K-Factors, heating and usage methods, and weather. We schedule your deliveries within the perfect timeframe of need to give you total peace of mind. Let us take on the tracking of your gallons!­

While we always advocate for Automatic Delivery, knowing how to read your tank gauge is always excellent resident knowledge! Keep this guide handy for the future!