What Size Residential Propane Tank Do You Need
So you’ve looked at the pros and cons of natural gas, oil, and other heating sources vs. propane and are ready to go with propane as your heating source. Excellent decision! Propane has many advantages beyond just heating your residential home.
Propane is a great source of fuel for heat, and so much more—cooking, fueling your fireplace, heating your pool, running your dryer and your water heater, and more. Additionally, propane comes with a host of environmental benefits while also being cost-effective, making it good for the environment and your budget.
Propane is both an economical and plentiful fuel source year-round and has some of the highest storage safety standards. Propane tanks are commonly placed at least three feet away from the home and come in various sizes depending on your specific needs.
Read on to discover the best sizes of propane tanks for your residential home.
Why Choosing the Right Propane Tank Is Important
Choosing the appropriate size propane tank for your home will save you money in the long run. If your tank is too small, you’ll spend more due to filling it up more frequently.
When you receive propane, you’re paying for the cost of the propane, but also the cost of the delivery. Therefore, the more times you have to have your propane tank filled, the more times you have to pay for delivery fees.
Not only that, but propane companies often charge more to deliver smaller quantities. So with a smaller tank, you may be charged more for the propane gas.
That may beg the question: why don’t you just buy a bigger tank and not have to deal with the hassle of recurring delivery charges? While you could do that, you’ll end up paying more upfront for the tank and installation charges. Therefore, it’s better to stick with the Goldilocks rule: not too big, not too small, but just right. Although it may seem like a hard decision to get wrong, you’d be surprised by how many homes can miss the mark when it comes to purchasing the right size tank for their home.
Common Residential Propane Tank Sizes
A big reason why so many families can get the size of their tank wrong is because of the ways that propane tanks are measured. Some tanks may be measured by the liquid volume they can hold, while others are listed by the tank’s weight when it is full.
This is an important distinction to pay attention to when choosing the right propane tank. If all of this sounds technical and difficult, don’t worry, we’ll be explaining in more depth which tanks work best for the size of your home.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the maximum capacity for propane tanks is set at approximately 80% to expand due to weather changes. For example, a 500-gallon tank would have a maximum capacity of 400-450 gallons. Here are the most common sizes of propane tanks available, from your standard barbeque tanks to your industrial-sized tanks.
20 Pound or 5 Gallon Propane Tank
Usually reserved for your standard barbeque grill, these tanks can be refilled or purchased at your neighborhood hardware store (again, think Home Depot and Lowes here) or your local grocery store. You may also be able to refill these tanks at a local gas station. These are not for whole house heating.
33 Pound or 8 Gallon Propane Tank
These tanks are often used to power construction or warehouse vehicles like forklifts or farming vehicles. A forklift can run for about 8 hours on a 33-pound tank. These tanks are not commonly used to heat homes.
100 Pound or 25 Gallon Propane Tank
These tanks are often used as a temporary tank for construction site heat, food trucks, and other instances where the tank needs to be small and mobile.
The more sources your propane tank needs to fuel, the more likely you’ll need a larger tank. For instance, if this tank was heating the home, being used for cooking, fireplaces, and a hot-water heater, you may need a larger tank.
These tanks would be more ideal for people living the tiny home lifestyle.
200 Pound or 57 Gallon Propane Tank
A more common size for smaller homes can run fuel to supply cooking, a propane fireplace, and drying clothes. However, this size propane tank is limited in its capacity to run bigger appliances, such as furnaces and water heaters, for long periods of time.
If you’re using the propane to run too many different appliances, especially bigger ones, you may require a larger tank.
120 Gallon or 420 Pound Propane Tank
These tanks are often used for a wide variety of commercial and residential purposes. These tanks are often used for things other than primary heating, such as cooking, heating a pool, or in use for cooking.
Its capacity makes it ideal for running these types of appliances for long periods of time. Sometimes, two 120 gallon or 420 pound tanks are tied together to enable a larger capacity when a 500 gallon tank is too big.
500 Gallon Propane Tank
The most common tank used for residential homes, 500-gallon tanks are great for larger homes using propane as a primary heating source. These tanks have the capacity for home heating, pool heating, powering generators, and cooking.
Their capacity allows for fewer refills, which also means fewer deliveries. Another added benefit of the 500-gallon tank is that because it holds a lot of fuel, you’ll likely pay less per gallon as fuel becomes less expensive in bulk quantities. Another added bonus, tanks that are 500 gallons or more can often be buried for aesthetics.
1,000 Gallon Propane Tank
Often reserved for residential homes that are larger than 3,500 square feet or larger, this big tank is often used for agricultural and industrial purposes. It does everything that the 500-gallon tank can do, but just on a greater scale.
2,000 Gallon Propane Tank
These tanks are often used for commercial heating. It does everything the 1,000-gallon tank does, but just on a larger scale. 2,000 gallon tanks are ideal for homes above 6,000 square feet and commercial heating.
What Tank Is Best for You?
Ideally, the 500-gallon tank is best for homes running multiple appliances and are under 3,500 square feet. If your home is larger than 3,500 square feet, you may want to upgrade to the 1,000-gallon or even 2,000-gallon tank.
Propane for Your Residential Home on Long Island
Looking for a propane tank for your residential home? Propane Depot is a locally owned propane company serving Long Island, including Hampstead and Montauk. We can advise you on the right size residential propane tank to meet your needs.
We also offer smart home tank monitors and a convenient app for you to monitor usage and pay your bill, among other things.