Today I'm going to talk about Boondocking and propane.
Propane is a consumable that can be either brought to your RV, with the refillable propane tanks that you use on your barbecue grill that we're all familiar with, Or if you have built in propane tanks like a lot of class A's do, then you have to take your RV somewhere and have it filled up.
There are benefits to either way, but I prefer the removable tanks that I can carry somewhere and have filled. The downside of that is the larger size tanks, like I have in the Arctic Fox are very heavy when their full and not that easy to wrangle into place, and me getting older is not helping at all.
Obviously with the built-in propane tanks some RVs have you don't have to do any heavy lifting. But you do have to pack up your RV and drive to wherever the propane is sold. And when your Boondocking that may end up being a long way down a beat up dirt road.
It's usually not hard to find propane, especially in areas were a lot of RVers go. The trick is finding propane in places you've never been to before. Some places will have signs telling you they sell propane, other times you may have to look for the big propane refill tanks at a gas station or a truck stop.
I personally have never liked or used the places where you trade in your empty tank for a full one. It seemed to me that it was kind of expensive for what little convenience it offered. Another reason is I take care of my propane tanks, I know where they've been, and I know what kind of life they've had so I trust them, other people's tanks.... Not so much.
Looking for propane on the Internet can be kind of iffy, because places will close but leave their website up advertising propane, I found that more common in little towns than you might think. The way that I usually end up finding propane is, looking for signs, asking other RVers, or asking the locals. One of those ways has always worked for me.
When your Boondocking the propane will usually be your main source of heat whether it's the RV furnace are some kind of radiant heater like I use, propane is an inexpensive and efficient way of heating an RV. Propane will also usually be running your refrigerator, I say usually because some people run their refrigerators off of batteries, But propane is the more common way. And of course for most people it's their primary means of cooking, since your stove, your oven, and your outdoor barbecue grill will all be using propane. Yes I know people grill with charcoal, but a lot of RVs including the Arctic Fox comes with a quick hook up so you can plug your barbecue grill into the trailers propane lines and not have to deal with the mess charcoal makes.... Yes I understand that charcoal makes the food taste better but that's a discussion for another time. Also There's more and more people running their generators off of propane, I may get deeper into that when I start talking about another consumable, electricity.
Just to give you a rough idea of the cost of propane while Boondocking. I do a little bit of heating in the morning to take the chill off the trailer using my radiant heater, I do a little bit of cooking [Thanks Maggie] but mostly just heating up soup and things like that, and of course the refrigerator runs 24 hours a day. And with those things going on I've been averaging about $25 a month for propane. But remember if you have to heat more than a couple of hours a day it can get much higher than that especially if you're using your RVs furnace .
You may notice I haven't mentioned anything about propane safety, and thats simply because safety issues are way too deep and complicated to get into here, and I am in no way an expert on propane safety. My knowledge of propane safety extends no further than the fact that I have not as yet blown myself up. So I would suggest going on the Internet and reading as much as you can about propane safety and what you can and cannot safely do.