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Propane Tank placement

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Thern Newbell

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Apr 25, 2002
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Certified Residential Appraiser
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Tennessee
I tried to find some info on this site as well as on Google, but could not find specifically what I was looking for. I recently visited a property with an above ground 500 gallon propane tank. The tank was placed such that the end was pointed toward the front porch and I believe that the tank was approximately ten feet away from the porch. Is there a requirement that the ends be pointed away from any improvements that supersedes the distance requirement?
 

CANative

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G-man

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Feb 4, 2002
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Ohio
Busting a myth.

I believe FHA changed their rules regarding fuel storage tanks because of this exact situation. Their main concerns are large, commercial fuel tanks, not the ones typically found in rural locations. We're talking several thousand gallon tanks and the like.
Anyway, didn't we all watch Mythbusters a couple of weeks ago where they tried to blow up a 50 gallon propane tank? They had to use a high powered rifle to even blow a hole in it, but couldn't get to explode. They eventually used incendiary (sp?) bullets fired from a chain gun to get it to blow up real good!
 

Ken B

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frozone

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Jul 20, 2006
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New York
Anyway, didn't we all watch Mythbusters a couple of weeks ago where they tried to blow up a 50 gallon propane tank?

Saw it. Still kinda would make me feel uncomfortable having one close to the house. Of course we all drive around with explosive fuels right under our dupas.
 
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Mr Rex

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Jan 12, 2004
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Certified Residential Appraiser
State
North Carolina
The suggested distances may be a good "rule of thumb", but in my experience (fairly extensive), the smaller tanks have always been placed right next to the house.

I would ask the code compliance folks for your jurisdiction.

Kenneth, if you look at the picture, tanks under 125 gallons do not have minimum distances from the house, only windows and air intakes etc.
 
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