Hazardous material containers must be stored properly, or the consequences can result in an unfortunate accident. Propane containers are used for both industrial and residential purposes. They normally come with manufacture instructions and storage recommendations. The owner will want to store these documents in a safe location for future use. Proper propane storage will keep either a residential or commercial location safe.
First Propane Storage Tip
A propane cylinder should be utilized outdoors in a well ventilated space. A residential owner will never want to store this item in a basement or garage area. Preferably, this item should be placed in a cool outside location. The container should not be exposed to high temperatures. Per OSHA guidelines contained in regulations standard 1910 Subpart H – Hazardous Materials, these containers should never be placed near an entry, exit or stairwell. An enclosed area, such as a basement or garage, can potentially turn into a dangerous situation if the propane leaks since this material is highly combustible.
Second Propane Storage Tip
The container needs to be stored upright. Avoid laying the cylinder on it’s side. The outdoor space should be clear of any ignition hazards. Natural propane gas has no odor, but many manufactures will add a scent to the gas so that a leak can be detected. When the vessel is being used, the owner will also want to avoid smoking while using the gas.
Third Propane Storage Tip
The cylinder valve will need to be kept closed and also capped when not being used. Protective fitting caps can be purchased from a supplier and used to cover exposed disconnected hose fittings and the burner air intakes. A more economical solution will be to cover these parts with small plastic bags until the fitting caps are purchased.
Replace Worn Out Containers
A key additional safety tip will be to replace any worn, damaged or dented unit with a new cylinder. During a refill, the supply company can check for any leaks. A container with visible leaks or rust should be replaced immediately. An owner will need to plan on eventually replacing older containers since these items need to be outdoors and will wear down due to the weather.
What To Do If A Leak Is Detected
Even a careful user may experience a leaking container. The owner will want to leave the area immediately and contact emergency services. The first warning sign may be the smell of a faint odor that is included with the gas by the manufacture. This odor allows for easy detection of the problem. Avoid using a match or lighter to try and detect a leak, because this can lead to a serious accident. A user will want to frequently monitor a container for leaks and to ensure that all connections are kept tight.