Can’t get the propane to flow in your motorhome? Check this first


By Steve Savage, Mobility RV Service

Sometimes the fix is really simple and this is one of those times. Believe me, I get this question a lot. The question, usually from folks who have just purchased a used motorhome, is this: How do I get the propane to flow into my RV? The oven, furnace, water heater and refrigerator will not work on propane. The key here, of course, is nothing works on propane, but everything works fine otherwise.

Several motorhome manufacturers installed propane detectors wired to a valve at the propane tank. When the propane detector alerts to a leak or is simply shut off, the valve closes. It also closes if the coach loses 12-volt power. Nowadays, many of these detectors are getting long in the tooth and starting to fail, leaving owners searching for an alternative.

What you will discover is the original detector is no longer available — and the detector is the part that normally fails. The replacement is Safe-T-Alert #70-742-R-BR-Kit (in brown) or #70-742-R-WT-Kit (in white). You’ll most likely need to modify the mounting hole and pull a new wire from the detector to the valve. Pulling the wire is the hardest part of the job. The valve must be installed along with the detector. The new detector is sensitive to both propane and carbon monoxide.

Editor’s Note: One source of these replacement kits is from They’re also available at

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