Propane Detector Alarm

madreher

New Member
Oct 20, 2015
4
We had our maiden voyage this weekend and everything worked how it should. When preparing to leave I shut off the main gas valve and then continued with packing everything up. Last night I heard beeping coming from inside the closed camper. I opened the little door and smelled a little gas and realized it was the detector. I checked the propane valve and it was off. This is my first time owning a pop up so i'm not sure if I closed everything properly. Am I supposed to bleed out any excess gas still in the lines before closing the camper?
 

kitphantom

Super Active Member
Platinum Supporting Member
Dec 26, 2009
13,946
Albuquerque, NM
LP or CO detector?

We've always just turned off the gas and have never had the alarm sound. Since you smelled gas, however, I would assume there was a leak or something, somewhere.

Other reasons for the alarm to sound are a low battery and end-of-life for the detector, as well as damage from aerosols, such as cleaners. One reason to have a battery cut-off switch is that the LP detectors are hard-wired into most campers and act as a parasitic drain when it is closed up. Once the battery reaches a low enough level, they beep. Every year at end of camping season we see a few posts from those who forgot to disconnect the battery (or didn't know it was a good idea) and hear a beeping from deep within the pup sometime after the last trip.

If you would add the make, model and year of your pup to your signature line, it will help the rest of us; you can do so under the Profile tab above, the forum profile. For instance, with that info, we'd have a better idea if your detector was at the end of its life.
 

madreher

New Member
Oct 20, 2015
4
I'm going to pop it up when I get home and check the stove top. It never once smelled like propane while we were camping. When I heard the beeping last night I took my blower and blew fresh air into the pop up to air it out. That stopped the beeping noise. I left the door to the camper open to allow it to air out and to keep it from alarming again. I'm hoping it's just the stove and residual in the line. I'll be sure to post results once I take a look. I updated my profile so you should be able to see my pup info now.
 

Customer

Super Active Member
Jun 5, 2014
2,435
When an LPG detector sounds an alert it squeals, loudly, it doesn't go beep beep.

If your battery is low the LPG detector will beep.

Are you even sure it is the LPG detector? Don't guess, get in there, crawl around and narrow it down.
 

madreher

New Member
Oct 20, 2015
4
I found the source of the propane leak yesterday when I popped up the camper. I had packed my propane lantern under the bench seat and I guess it somehow came a little loose and was leaking. I decided it probably wasn't the best idea to stow it away in the camper to begin with. I also felt it was a little safer to remove the propane tank when not using it. I'm definitely relieved it wasn't anything else. Thanks everyone for your responses.
 

unclemark

Overland Park, KS
May 15, 2014
407
Overland Park, KS
The battery life in my propane/CO detector is only a few days. We went through two 9V batteries on a one-week trip. Test your detector before or early in your next trip.
 

colocmpr

Member
Jul 19, 2007
55
Glad that you found the root cause. I agree that it's a good idea to remove the propane tank from the lateness when not in use just to reduce risk of something going wrong.
 

kitphantom

Super Active Member
Platinum Supporting Member
Dec 26, 2009
13,946
Albuquerque, NM
One of the reasons we still use the roof top cargo box is for things such as the propane tanks and Coleman fuel. We do remove the propane tank if we've used the lantern (also from the Little Red Campfire), but we've had propane tanks that did not reseal once removed. I bought a brass cap for the 1# tanks, hoping that is a back-up if that happens again.
Year ago, we had a 20# tank on the bbq grill that had the valve fail - I smelled LP in the area and we finally traced it to the tank.

It's still good to remember that if your LP detector is wired in it can be a "vampire" on you battery.
 

madreher

New Member
Oct 20, 2015
4
kitphantom said:
It's still good to remember that if your LP detector is wired in it can be a "vampire" on you battery.

Is it a good idea to plug into the house while storing it in the garage between uses? Do the charges on these models know when to turn off so they don't boil the batteries?
 

kitphantom

Super Active Member
Platinum Supporting Member
Dec 26, 2009
13,946
Albuquerque, NM
We installed a cut-off switch for the battery on our pup. We're still trying to figure it out for the TT, since once we went to two batteries the boxes are a chore to get into for the switch we had. Not even sure there's room to install one of the big, through the box, ones.
 

unclemark

Overland Park, KS
May 15, 2014
407
Overland Park, KS
tfischer said:
Yours doesn't connect to your pup battery?
Popup did not come with a battery or a place to put one. On our May trip to Colorado we needed propane heat in the popup because our desired campsite had no utilities. So we got a radiant heater and a 9V/AC propane detector. That sucker burned through those batteries. But, now that my 12V system is in, I guess I'll install a 12v propane detector. That and a real furnace.
 

fallsrider

Super Active Member
Nov 16, 2006
1,771
NC
unclemark said:
Popup did not come with a battery or a place to put one. On our May trip to Colorado we needed propane heat in the popup because our desired campsite had no utilities. So we got a radiant heater and a 9V/AC propane detector. That sucker burned through those batteries. But, now that my 12V system is in, I guess I'll install a 12v propane detector. That and a real furnace.
May I make a suggestion that you get a LP/CO combination unit? If you are running heat in your trailer, it's a good idea to have carbon monoxide protection as well. JMHO.

They are certainly more expensive, but I believe it is worth it.
 

unclemark

Overland Park, KS
May 15, 2014
407
Overland Park, KS
fallsrider said:
May I make a suggestion that you get a LP/CO combination unit? If you are running heat in your trailer, it's a good idea to have carbon monoxide protection as well. JMHO.

They are certainly more expensive, but I believe it is worth it.
That's what I have, and that's what I'll get when I upgrade.
 




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