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Where to refill those propane tanks on the road

Baby, it’s getting cold outside! That’s not a problem unless the inside of your RV also becomes chilly. Then it could be time to refill your propane tanks. Just for clarification, I’m talking about the bigger tanks that keep your furnace running, not the little ones used to fuel your gas grill. We usually just exchange the smaller tanks, but the bigger ones? No way. We always have our larger propane tanks refilled. Not only do you get to keep the propane that may remain inside the tank (saving you money) but you can also be certain of the integrity of the tank – because you are the one who has used it and had it inspected, certified, or recertified. In other words, you know your tank.

So, the question remains: When you are away from familiar surroundings, where can you find a place to get your propane tanks refilled? When we know that we’ll be RVing in an area where we’ll need to run the furnace, we research ahead of time to find area propane fill stations. I think it’s just a better way to RV in cold climates. We have peace of mind knowing that we won’t run short of fuel and can keep the rig warm.

Location possibilities for propane

Here are some locations that are known to help keep that RV furnace humming along all season long. They will refill your tanks. You may want to call ahead for hours and to compare prices.

  • Many Costco stores will refill your propane tanks, but not all of them offer this service. Contact Costco’s automotive or tire service area for information.
  • Tractor Supply Company, or TSC, will also refill your tanks. Some smaller stores are the exception. Check before you go.
  • U-Haul boasts that they have trained attendants who will quickly refill your RV propane tank and get you back on the road ASAP. U-Haul businesses can be found in many different locations across the United States and Canada. Be aware that some U-Haul outlets are very small and may not have the equipment needed to fill your tanks.
  • While Home Depot and Lowe’s stores do not offer the service of refilling propane tanks, select Menards stores will. (FYI: Menards is a large lumber and home improvement store found throughout areas in the Midwest.)
  • National propane suppliers like Ferrellgas or AmeriGas and other major propane companies that service private residences will usually have a refill station. (Be aware that some of these businesses will not have space to accommodate a large RV. You may need to take the tanks to have them refilled.) Local area propane dealers will also refill your RV tanks. You can Google their location and call ahead, just to be sure.
  • Highway truck and travel stops like Love’s and Pilot Flying J will happily keep your propane tanks filled so that you can continue to enjoy winter RVing, even when temperatures plummet. You can download Pilot Flying J’s travel guide, which lists their company’s propane refill stations for every state in the U.S. Find it here.
  • Check out locally owned farm and ranch supply stores in the area where you plan to visit. Many offer refilling of your propane tanks, but it’s best to call ahead and know for sure.
  • Some gas stations will refill RV propane tanks, as will selected campgrounds. Last winter, our CG host invited the local propane supplier to visit our camp once a week. If we needed a refill for our 40 lb. tanks, all we had to do was sign up! The dealer came right to our campsite to refill our tanks.
  • The app FreeRoam offers a United States map that shows places where you can get propane tanks refilled. Check out the web version here.

Hope this helps! Stay warm out there!

##RVDT1746

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Bob Salmi
1 month ago

I am in Florida. Local price is $4.27 for LP in my motorhome. Costco is $2.72 . I am not plugging them, however I am happy to have the membership!

Alan Day
1 month ago

Be cautious, many places have minimums, will charge for a full tank even if you only needed a few gallons. Tractor Supply charges only for what you need, and their service is quick and friendly.

Michael Galvin, PhD
1 month ago

AllStays app shows LP locations for RVers

Gail
1 month ago

Good to know! Thanks, Michael.

BILLY Bob Thronton
1 month ago

Thanks

wanderer
1 month ago

I have checked with more than a few American and Ferrellgas places and found they generally do NOT fill on site. If you are desperate they may be able to tell you who in the area actually does fill, but during covid they locked their doors and you couldn’t even do that.

Gloria Sluder
1 month ago

ACE Hardware filled our motor home tank with no problem we’re in central Florida

Lawrence Neely
1 month ago

SInce I crew for hot air balloon pilots, they always know where to find the best (cheapest) places around to fill up. Since they have large multiple 30 or 40 pound tanks, they go to where they can fill up large tanks (usually distributors). The distributors usually are fairly cheap.

DEL
1 month ago

Agway stores or another option for filling RV propane.

Jeff Arthur
1 month ago

Don’t count on Menards filling rv tanks . They have 20 # swap out tanks.

GWM
1 month ago
Reply to  Jeff Arthur

Menards in Warren, Ohio can “refill” your tanks.

David Telenko
1 month ago

Seems like this article is very vague in regards to what size tank Gail is referring to! It appears to be the 5 gallon ones that are affixed to the front of RV trailers by “U” bolts, not the larger permanent ones that are welded to the RV frame & are not portable. I think the article needs some clarification by the author!!! As example on my motor home I have a 30 gallon ASME tank & it is permanently welded in place & after installation there is NO recertification, only visual inspection for any damage!
Snoopy

LBauer
1 month ago
Reply to  David Telenko

We have a fifth-wheel with two portable 40lb. tanks we remove, transport with truck, refill, and put back in place.

wanderer
1 month ago

It really depends on where you are. In off the beaten path areas, the big chains are useless. It’s gonna be local hardware stores, marinas, farm co-ops, gas stations.

Unfortunately Google Maps is clogged with false ‘answers’ such as a list of every place which sells home fuel but does NOT fill portable tanks, and drugstores and gas stations with tank swap cages by the door. I’ve also had someone use their handy ‘special app’ to send me to 4 of these useless locations.

TIM MCRAE
1 month ago

There is a wide range of prices for filling propane. The most convenient is usually the most expensive (sometimes double or triple the price). I have found RV Parks to be the highest.

Cold weather areas (northeast & midwest) have many competing dealers for home delivery service (home heating). They will usually fill your RV tank or even your portable tanks at the per gallon price.

My area the home heating places are usually a buck or two a gallon cheaper than TSC or Uhaul..

In warmer areas I have found commercial propane distributors or Interstate truck stops to be the most reasonable.

With the obscene pricing this year, who knows? Just call around first. Be watchful of price gouging.

TIM MCRAE
1 month ago
Reply to  TIM MCRAE

Forgot to add, RVPARKY is great for finding propane, but always call the place to confirm and ask the price.

Bob Palin
1 month ago

The last 4 Flying Js I have been to for propane have been out of order (UT, ID, CO).

James Dresser
1 month ago

RV dealers are also a reliable source.

Dale
1 month ago

Many RV parks can/will re-fill your propane tanks.

Jane
1 month ago

Thanks for the list.

JPM
1 month ago

How often should a propane tank be recertified?

Tommy Molnar
1 month ago
Reply to  JPM

Every 12 years.

Lawrence Neely
1 month ago
Reply to  JPM

it depends. 12 years from the manufacture date, every 5 years after that. Although some types of tanks may require every 5 years.

Fred
1 month ago

The link to FreeRoam takes you to their website, but I see no mention on any of their pages about propane vendors.

Bill N Stacey
1 month ago

Getting a propane tank recertified is more difficult now. After ALOT of research, I found only 2 places in the entire state of Florida! The Guv has so many new restrictions that companys just wont spend the $,s and time to “Train” and provide this valued service… Its just Sad!!

Michael Gardner
1 month ago

Beware, some places like I experienced at Menards, charge a flat rate for filling portable tanks no matter whether they are empty or half full.