So you go to fill up your propane tank and they tell you that it has expired, what’s up with that? Well thanks to our federal government propane tanks do actually expire every 12 years. Some tanks even have a warning about it stamped on the upper ring. They cite safety reasons for this law. So how do you handle an expired 20 pound propane tank?
What is the expiration date on your 20 pound tank?
All recently manufactured 20 pound propane tanks have a date stamp on the top ring (see image above). This is when the tank was made. If you add 12 years to that date that would be the expiration date. In the case of our tank pictured above the date is 02/2014 so the expiration date is 02/2026.
What to do with your expired 20 pound propane tank:
- Trade if off at the propane exchange. The propane exchange places have no problem swapping out an expired tank for a good one at no extra cost. You just end up paying a little more for your propane. The only real drawback to this is chances are the tank you get will expire sooner. This option will cost you about $5.
- Get your propane tank recertified: Not all places that fill propane tanks will recertify them, you will need to call around. To get a tank recertified it must have the proper valve. No visible damage (rust, dents, etc.) to the tank itself. A recertified tank is good for 5 years before it needs to be inspected again. This option will cost you about $8 for a 20lb tank.
- Purchase a new tank: The most expensive option and the only option that will give you up to 12 years of life again. This option will cost you about $30.
Personally I just swap our tanks out at propane exchange. It’s just a matter of convenience. Our propane filling station does both fill and exchange but they do not recertify tanks. Read our full review of the propane exchange here.
aka Sultan of Sizzle
I have been blogging about and selling grilling tool for over 12 years. A Certified Food Safety Professional, KCBS member, award winning writer and have over 10 years experience in the food service industry.
“I have experienced some of the best food this country has to offer and nothing is better than the food that comes off my own grill!”