There is nothing more frustrating than running out of propane in the middle of the night while on a camping trip.
It’s not just an inconvenience but it could mean some pretty rough adventures. However, with this top 5 dual propane tank regulators, you will not get caught off guard when your propane supply runs out.
Although propane regulators serve the same purpose, they aren’t all the same. Installing the wrong regulator can render your whole propane system inoperable. So, you need to select a good regulator.
One that will maintain a constant gas pressure from the propane tanks into your RV or household. It should also have an easy to read indicator that lets you know when a cylinder is empty.
Our list below includes some of the best models you can find on the market both in terms of functionality and built quality. But before we jump into the reviews, here is a short comparison of some of their top features.
Best Dual Propane Tank Regulators 2018
Table of Contents
- 1 Best Dual Propane Tank Regulators 2018
- 2 1. Camco Automatic Changeover Propane Regulator (59005)
- 3 2. MARSH EXCEL MEGR-253 Auto Changeover Propane Regulator
- 4 3. Cavagna 52-A-890-0006C Auto Changeover Regulator
- 5 4. Fairview GR-9984 Auto Changeover Regulator
- 6 5. Flame King KT12ACR6 Auto Changeover Regulator
- 7 Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Dual Propane Tank Regulator
- 8 Our Final Review
|MARSH EXCEL MEGR-253|
|Flame King KT12ACR6|
The whole unit looks and feels robust. The aluminium body, the plastic lever and brass connections are all thick and strong. The gas pressure is smooth and consistent throughout. The regulator uses the primary tank you’ve selected first. When it’s depleted, it instantly begins drawing gas from the secondary tank. Therefore, no switching the tanks manually.
The unit draws 210, 000 BTU/hr from the primary cylinder. When the changeover occurs, it starts to draw at 130, 000 BTU/hr from the backup cylinder. But, you will hardly notice any interruption in the flow of the gas during the switch. You can push the capacity back to 210, 000 BTU/hr by simply turning the knob to the side of the reserve cylinder to make it the new primary tank.
This Camco regulator also features an indicator window to let you know when a tank is empty. It’s easy to see and turns red when a tank runs out. Removing the empty cylinder for refill is quick and easy too and does not interrupt the propane supply.
In general, with the Camco 590005, you will not have to worry about your propane gas running out on you unaware. The only effort on your part would be to turn the knob to the new service tank so as to increase the capacity. Other than that, this is a pocket-friendly dual tank regulator that offers great convenience for RVs with two propane tanks hookup.
Constructed from durable and strong raw Zinc material, this unit will hold up pretty well in harsh weather conditions. The changeover feature, on the other hand, does well to facilitate uninterrupted fuel flow to the propane gas system.
When the primary cylinder becomes exhausted, the reserve side opens and the regulator automatically switches supply over to the reserve cylinder thereby preventing any gas outages.
It draws 225, 000 BTU/hr from the primary cylinder and 150, 000 BTU/hr from the backup cylinder. However, like the Camco 590005, you will have to turn the lever manually to the new tank in use so as to restore the primary capacity of 225, 000 BTU/hr.
The indicator which is on the changeover lever is as well easy to read and will turn red once the tank that is pointing to becomes depleted. The only setback is that it lacks mounting lugs cast on the side plus there is no bracket. Nonetheless, it works flawlessly once installed.
All in all, the MEGR-253 is a reliable high capacity dual propane regulator that’s ideal for use with RVs, small cottages and cabins. Installing it will not present much difficulty either.
It draws from both tanks at a constant rate of 160, 000 BTU/h even after the changeover occurs. The best part is that you can adjust the outlet pressure from -0.5 WC to +1.5WC. Therefore, if it’s not delivering enough gas to all appliances, you can easily adjust it to a more suitable level.
The red/green indicator is highly visible and turns red when the first tank is empty. Cavagna have also included a small arrow on the side of the knob that points to the tank that’s active.
What makes this Cavagna regulator stand out compared to the rest is the high safety measures incorporated in its design. The model includes an excess flow safety device that automatically shut offs gas supply in case of a leak or accidental disconnection.
The regulator is as well able to limit the release of propane to the environment should it malfunction. It features an overpressure protection device that will lower the pressure to a value that’s less than 2 psi.
The built-in back check valve is another wonderful addition as far as safety is concerned. It blocks the line from the drained tank allowing you to safely remove it while the reserve tank remains operational. But you have to manually turn the knob to the full tank in order to remove the one that’s empty.
Hooking up the unit is quick and simple. The bracket is much better designed than that of most other brands. It easily slips over the threaded rod on the tank rack. The whole installation can take less than 10 minutes.
Overall, the Cavagna 52-A-890-0006C is one of the safest dual propane tank regulator on the market. It’s well made and comes packed with some extra but useful features. For those looking for a regulator that can guarantee safe operation throughout, this is an option you should strongly consider.
The unit is intuitively designed to facilitate easy operation. It’s compact with a highly visible green indicator dome that immediately changes to red when the main service cylinder has been depleted.
Once installed, you will not have to worry about running out of gas at inconvenient moments. The regulator runs the two tanks in series automatically redirecting the propane gas flow from the empty designated primary cylinder to the reserve cylinder. The changeover occurs instantly and does not interrupt the supply of the gas to the appliances.
The lever which sits on top of the regulator is very responsive. When you flip it to face the full backup tank once the main one is exhausted, it immediately resets the indicator to green. So, you get to remove the empty tank easily for a refill as the unit continues to draw gas from the reserve tank.
In regards to installation, the kit does come with any mounting hardware. You will need to figure out how to mount it to your tank setup which is a bit frustrating but not necessarily a deal breaker.
The GR-9984 is definitely a robust, high capacity dual propane tank regulator that can last for a long time out in the elements. It does not come with any special features but will get the work done.
In terms of performance, the KT12ACR6 will not disappoint despite its simple design. The unit comes with two 12” pigtail hoses that allow you to connect dual propane tanks with much ease.
The auto changeover functionality operates flawlessly. As soon as the designated service tank run outs of gas, the regulator switches over to the extra tank to keep the gas pressure to appliances constant.
Although it’s not a heavy duty model, it draws propane from either tank at a fairly decent rate of 30, 000 BTU/hr. The indicator is not the most intuitive compared to the other four units but it’s visible enough to allow you to see the colour change when a tank is depleted.
Like all the other regulators, you will be able to disconnect the empty cylinder from the system without necessarily having to turn off the other tank. However, the lever must be turned manually to the full tank before the disconnection plus the propane supply is not affected once you remove the empty tank.
Generally, when you look at this Flame King KT12ACR6 dual propane tank regulator, there is nothing fancy about it. The unit is simple but built to great quality. It’s the perfect fit for someone who just wants an inexpensive standard regulator that functions properly and can offer years of service.
Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Dual Propane Tank Regulator
Dual propane tank regulators vary in design and features. So, you need to ensure that you find the best option for your propane system. Here are some of the main areas you should pay attention to when making your selection.
1. Built quality
A regulator is a crucial part of the propane system. Therefore, you need to ensure that you select a unit that’s solidly built using quality materials. Most regulators are made from either aluminium, raw zinc, brass or stainless steel.
All these materials can withstand the harsh outdoor conditions but their durability will depend on the level of thickness. The thicker they are the more durable and robust the regulator. Thereby, whether it’s aluminium or brass construction, the key here is to make sure that the unit is thick and strong so that you can get years of service from it.
Dual tank regulators have different BTU/hr capacity or rather the amount of gas allowed to flow to appliances. The higher the rating, the higher the amount of gas a regulator will let out. This is an important point to consider because going with a unit that has a low BTU capacity means that some of your appliances may not receive enough gas to operate.
Therefore, you want to make sure that you pick a model that offers a high flow rate. Preferably 50, 000 BTU/hr or higher depending on the type of appliances you are using.
3. Gauge Design
When it comes to the gauge, almost all dual tank regulators will have a green/red indicator to let you know when a cylinder is full or empty. In this case, while you are likely to find a wide variety of designs, the key is to ensure you choose a unit where the gauge is intuitively designed.
It should be highly visible and easy to read. A good example is the indicator on the Cavagna 52-A-890-0006C or the Fairview GR-9984. They are both large and easy to see hence you are able to quickly notice the change in color without having to strain much.
4. Propane Supply Consistency
The advantage of a dual tank regulator is that it’s able to maintain a constant pressure throughout even when one of the tanks runs out of gas. However, not all regulators will allow you to remove the empty tank while the system is still in operation. You will have to turn off the full tank so as to remove the empty bottle for refill.
So, you want to consider a unit that’s designed to facilitate easy removal of the depleted tank without interrupting the supply of propane from the full tank.
Hooking up a dual propane regulator is pretty much a straightforward process. Nonetheless, some regulators don’t feature mounting hardware which in turn can make the whole installation process frustrating. To avoid this, make sure that the model you pick features all the necessary mounting hardware. It should include the bracket with screw holes properly threaded for easy installation.
Our Final Review
Investing in a dual propane tank regulator can make life so much easier when you have an extra tank hooked up to your propane system.
However, considering that there are many options on the market, you will have to be extra careful when making your selection. Otherwise, you may end up throwing your money on a flimsy unit that will not only render your system inoperable but may also put your life at risk.
With that said, the five models included on this list are well made and can work with almost any type of propane tank. They are robust, easy to operate and can withstand the elements. Therefore, if you are on the hunt for a reliable regulator for your dual tank system, then we recommend considering one of the options listed above.