How to Dispose of a Propane Tank
Your propane tank gave you a beautiful firepit and helped you grill all your favorite foods, but now it’s empty. So what are you supposed to do with it?
Getting an empty propane tank off your property takes a bit more work than most other garbage, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a difficult job. Keep reading to learn the right way to dispose of your propane tank—and what not to do.
Don’t Throw an Empty Propane Tank in the Trash
You should never put a propane tank in your normal trash (or recycling) can. Since propane tanks contain flammable gas, any residual gas could potentially start a fire at the landfill. Due to this risk, most landfills and recycling centers won’t even accept propane tanks.
Don’t try to “sneak” them into your garbage either. If something goes wrong, the propane could cause property damage or even injure someone.
Even If It’s Empty—Don’t Throw Your Tank in the Trash
It doesn’t matter how empty or clean your propane tank is. You should still never throw it out with the rest of your trash.
Also, if your propane tank isn’t completely empty, never dump out the contents on your property (or anywhere else). Remember, propane is flammable, and if dumping it in your yard, or somewhere else, or keeping it in your home is a safety hazard.
Reuse Your Tank if Possible
If possible, you should reuse your propane tank. Find a propane provider in your area, tell them you have an empty propane tank, and let them refill it for you. Depending on the type and size of your tank, you can keep reusing propane tanks for 20 years (or more).
Don’t have any need to reuse your tank? That’s okay. Just make sure you follow the proper disposal tips below.
Propane Tank Disposal: The Right Way to Throw It Out
The best way to get rid of an old propane tank that is 57 gallons or more (whether it’s empty or full) is to contact a propane provider company. Tell them you have an old tank you don’t want, and they’ll come to pick it up and dispose of it safely. You won’t have to do any of the work yourself, which can take a lot of stress off your shoulders.
You may also be able to find a household hazardous waste collection in your area for 20lb BBQ tanks or forklift tanks. They will either have you drop off the tank at their location or pick it up themselves.
However, it’s often easier and faster to have a propane company do this job for you. If your tank is old or damaged and you want a new one, you can also have a propane provider supply you with a new one when they come to remove your old tank.
Can You Store Empty Propane Tanks on Your Property?
Yes. You can store empty propane tanks on your property, but if you don’t think you’ll use them again, it’s safer to have a propane provider dispose of them. That said, if you do plan to store an empty tank, make sure you follow these safety tips.
Don’t Keep It Indoors
Don’t leave your propane tank indoors, even if it’s empty. If the gas started leaking, it could fill up the enclosed area and turn it into a dangerous environment. Keep the tank outside in a dry, well-ventilated area.
Keep It at the Right Temperature
Don’t let your tank get any colder than −40 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter or warmer than 120 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer. This can cause the pressure to build up inside the tank, which can lead to leaks.
It’s also not a good idea to leave your tank in direct sunlight as this can cause it to get too warm. Do your best to leave it in a shaded area, and if you don’t get any shade in your yard, you might want to create some.
Make Sure It Stays Upright
Remember, even if your tank is empty, there might be small traces of gas left. Because of this, you should never store the tank on its side or upside down. Keep the tank upright at all times, and if you need, you can stand it up in something like a milk crate to ensure it doesn’t fall over.
Turn the Gas Valve Off
Make sure you turn the gas valve off. If you don’t do this, it can release the propane into the air. Not only will this smell terrible, but it can also become a safety risk.
Don’t Put It Near Anything Flammable
Even if the tank is completely empty, never store it near anything that can cause it to ignite. This means you should keep it away from grills, candles, firepits, lighters, etc. A small accident can turn into a serious problem if you aren’t careful.
The Best Way to Get Rid of Your Propane Tank When You’re Done Using It
When it comes to propane tank disposal, you should never try to get rid of it by yourself. Instead, give it to a propane provider and let them handle it for you.
In the Suffolk County area, Propane Depot is your trusted local propane provider for tank refills and removal, get in touch with our team today.