Handling & Transporting Propane Cylinders

Handling & transporting safety tips

Small cylinders are compact and portable – it is no wonder they are used extensively for RVing, camping, and backpacking, not to mention powering outdoor equipment like fire pits and barbecues.

These cylinders are safe when properly used and handled:

  • Inspect your propane camping equipment carefully before you leave home. Check for leaks by soaking each fuel cylinder connection with soapy water or leak solution and look for telltale bubbles. If you detect a leak, call your propane supplier.
  • Make sure you are familiar with the manufacturers’ written operating and maintenance instructions of any appliance that you are using.
  • When shopping for propane equipment for your RV or camping, make sure the product is certified for Canada.
  • Do not use portable propane camping equipment in your RV.
  • Use propane equipment on a level surface in an open, well-ventilated area away from shrubs or dry wood. Never turn in at night with a stove, cooker or lantern still burning.
  • Never smoke while handling a propane cylinder.


Storing Propane Cylinders

  • Whether full or empty, new, or old, always store cylinders outdoors whenever possible, away from heat or sources of ignition (matches, smoking materials, etc.).
  • Keep propane cylinders in a secure, well-ventilated area, off the ground, on a non-combustible base, and store in an upright position.
  • When storing, disconnect cylinders, plug, or cap all cylinder outlets.
  • Never store spare cylinders under or near the barbecue.

Transporting Propane Cylinders

To bring cylinders home or to camping sites, follow these easy tips:

  • Disconnect cylinders and plug or cap all outlets before you go.
  • Always carry the cylinder in an upright position with the safety valve on top.
  • Never put a propane cylinder in a closed vehicle. Placing it on the floor of the passenger compartment with all the windows open is ideal. When in the trunk, block the trunk lid open.
  • Never leave a cylinder in a parked vehicle with the windows up. Heat builds up quickly and could cause an explosive release of propane in the vehicle.
  • Secure the cylinder in the upright position so it cannot tip over while you are driving.
  • Do not transport or use propane containers that are damaged, show signs of corrosion, have been exposed to fire, or appear to be leaking.

Reusable Propane Cylinders

Reusable five-pound cylinders are an eco-friendly alternative to one-pound cylinders for use in camping, barbecuing, heating, torching, and much more. We encourage Canadians to use five-pound cylinders for a few reasons:

  • The small one-pound cylinders are typically manufactured and filled from supplies outside of Canada. Although the five-pound cylinders may be slightly larger and heavier, you are supporting your local Canadian suppliers.
  • While handy, single-use cylinders cause collection and disposal issues for provincial parks and municipalities, whereas you can refill a five-pound cylinder at a propane refill location.
Illegal propane cylinder adapter kit

IMPORTANT! It is illegal by Canadian law to refill cylinders without proper training!

Refillable cylinder adapter kits are being illegally sold in Canada.

The kits allow consumers to illegally refill their cylinders and come with a stand for a 20 lb propane cylinder and connectors.

Regulation requires:

  • Filling must be done by personnel trained for that purpose.
  • ‘Single-trip’ or ‘non-refillable’ cylinders cannot be refilled.
  • Do not attempt to refill pressurized propane containers unless you are properly trained.

The Canadian Propane Association reminds you there is a safety risk for those not properly trained to transfer propane. Only someone properly trained should refill a cylinder.

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