Written by Doug Rowan

Summertime, for those of us in the LP Gas Industry, is known as a slow time. So, let’s take advantage of the extra time being afforded us and get prepared for the busier times in the upcoming months. Let’s take this time to relax and think clearly about what we can do to make our businesses run more smoothly. I’ve compiled a neat little Summertime Maintenance FAQ to aid you in preparing for the busy months of the LP Gas Industry.

Q: How can I keep my pump in working order?

A: At the very least, grease the pump on a quarterly basis and check for worn belts or couplers.

Q: What should I look for on my hoses?

A: Each month you should inspect your hoses. Check them for worn or rubbed places and look for bulges. Make sure to check your gauges for anything that may make the hose unsafe. Finally, the hoses on your bobtail are only good for 10 years or for every other Hydrostatic test.

Q: How can I maintain my valves?

A: Check your valves for any missing springs or bolts and make sure to replace or repair any you find. If you find any corrosion make sure to lubricate as it will help in stopping the corrosion.

Q: What should I check before setting tanks in a customer’s yard?

A: Despite needing very little maintenance, tanks need to be inspected before being set in a customer’s yard. Here are a few things to look out for.

  1. Relief Valve – Assess the condition of the valve. If it’s corroded make sure to replace it. Also, check for a rain cap and replace if necessary.
  2. Fill Valves – Check for leaks or debris inside the valve. If a leak is discovered you’ll need to replace this one too.
  3. Service Valve – Check for leaks and corrosion as well as if the hand-wheel is in working order. Also, check the vapor valve and make sure there are no leaks and it has a cap.
  4. Liquid Withdrawal Valve – Check to make sure the cap is secure and the valve is leak free. If a leak is found the entire tank needs to be evacuated and the valve replaced.
  5. Gauge – Again, check for leaks at the tank connection. Also, make sure the gauge is readable.

Q: How can I maintain my bobtails?

A: There are a few things that need to be done in order to maintain your bobtails.

  1. Make sure your business has and enforces good housekeeping practices.
  2. Get inspections on a regular basis and periodically check to make sure you’re up to date.
  3. Change the oil on a regular basis.
  4. Make sure the meter is calibrated.
  5. Check the hose reel for loose or worn bearings, sprockets, and chains. Make sure to lubricate this as it will make it easier for the driver to pull off and re-reel the hose.

Remember, any maintenance done during our downtime will make our busy seasons less stressful. When checking for leaks, always use an approved leak detection solution. Constantly ask yourself what you can do to prevent anything from going down and how you can make your job safe for you and everyone around you.


Salesman Doug Rowan

Doug Rowan

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