Is My Grill’s Propane Tank Out of Date or Expired?

Here in New England, Summer is awesome. Every street you drove down had that smoky smell of barbecued dinners and the sounds of backyard parties. If you’re getting ready for that delicious time of year, make sure that your propane gas tank isn’t expired,

Any tank that’s older than 12 years of age (at the time of writing in of 2019, that means tanks made before the same month 2007) is expired and cannot be refilled. But how do you find out if your tank is expired, and what do you do if it is expired? Let’s find out!

How To Check Your Tank’s Expiration

Every propane tank has a date stamped into the collar along the top of the tank. There are some important numbers and letters here that mark:

  • Serial Number
  • Water Content (WC)
  • Tare Weight (TW)
  • Manufacturing Date (See photo below)

The date is shown is the manufacturer date in MM-YY format. Most tanks are good for 12 years from the date of manufacturer, so check this carefully. If 12 years have passed from the date on your tank, your tank is expired and isn’t fillable according to state guidelines.

Tank Expiration Date

Other Factors That Might Disqualify A Tank Refill

An expired tank isn’t the only reason your tank might not be eligible to be refilled. Propane tanks need to have a device on them called an OPD, or Overfill Protection Device. When a tank is being filled with propane, these devices automatically shut off the valve when the tanks reach a certain capacity. If your tank doesn’t have an OPD, we aren’t able to fill that tank.

We also have to do a basic safety inspection before filling your tank. We inspect the tanks general condition, check the valve, and examine the head and foot rings. If your tank has visible rust or damage (including dents in the head and foot rings), it could be unsafe to fill and therefore would be disqualified from receiving a refill (Don’t worry, if this is the case, we have new tanks for sale, or would be happy to issue you a full refund).

Recertified Tanks

Tanks that are past their normal expiration date can be re-certified by someone who is trained to do so. If the inspector deems the tank’s condition to be usable, they will put a sticker on the tank with an “E” after the manufacturing date. This “E” adds another 5 years to the life of the tank.Tank with Recertification Sticker

What to Do With an Expired Tank

If you have an expired tank, the best thing to do is head down to your local Koopman Lumber and grab a new propane tank! Not only that, we’ll even take your old one and make sure that it is properly disposed of for FREE! If you purchase a new tank, make sure to never bring it to a retailer that does exchanges, because you may be getting a much older tank in return. Every new propane tank purchased at Koopman Lumber comes with a free propane fill, so you’ll be ready to get home and get grilling in just one visit!


Picture of BernzOmatic 334669 Propane Gas Cylinder, 5 gal Tank, 12-3/8 in Dia, 18-1/16 in H, Steel

BernzOmatic Propane Gas Cylinder – 20lb Tank


Quality construction and a durable polyurethane finish. Measures 6-1/2 in x 12-3/8 in x 18-1/16 in. LP-Gas capacity (approximate gallons) of 5 gal, water capacity of 47.7 lb, cylinder volume of 1,323 cu-in, collar height of 4 in, footing outside diameter of 7-13/16 in. Manufactured in accordance with DOT-4BA-240.


Image result for Worthington 308551

Worthington Propane Gas Cylinder With Gauge – 20lb Tank


Suited to recreational, commercial, grilling, heating jobs, industrial and home cooking. Engineered for lightweight strength and durability. Rugged, damage-resistant all-steel construction. Comfortable hand-holds in the collar for easy lifting. Rust inhibited Durabond powder coat paint. Interiors are clean, dry and scale-free. Equipped with an overfill prevention device (OPD). Built-in gas gauge. The unique float device accurately measures propane level.



Wrap Up

Expired tanks can have a lot of things to remember about them, but we make it easy to get what you need at Koopman Lumber! If you have any more questions, then head down to your local Koopman Lumber store or give us a call and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have!