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The Propane Alarm In Our RV Keeps Going Off
by Brenda Duke
Why Your RV’s Propane Detector Keeps Going Off
Our Safe-T-Alert for propane keeps beeping red and we cannot smell propane anywhere. Not sure what's causing it to do that. We are brand new camper owners and not sure what to do.
ANSWER: Hi Brenda, unfortunately you do not tell me if you own a brand new or used RV, so I do not know the exact model of propane detector you might have. But, anytime your RV's propane detector goes off, you need to take it seriously as it could be indicating a true propane leak.
In most cases the detector is sensitive enough to detect the propane before you actually smell it, so do not depend on your nose as a second detector. To be on the safe side when the detector goes off the first thing you should do is leave the RV and turn off the RV's propane supply at the main propane tank and see if the alarm ceases after a few minutes. If it does it is a sure sign that your RV has a propane leak and should be leak checked and repaired by a certified RV Technician.
Take a look at the short video below for some more information on RV Propane Detectors and a simple method to quickly test the detector.
One of the key points mentioned in the video is that Propane Detectors and Carbon Monoxide Detectors should be replaced every 5 to 7 years. As also mentioned mentioned in the video Propane and Carbon monoxide detectors have manufacturer dates stamped on the backs of them so you can determine if it is time to replace them.
Another point I should mention here is that Propane is not the only chemical that can set off a Propane Detector.
Listed below are some common items that can set off propane detectors
Propane and Carbon Monoxide detectors also require routine cleaning.
At Least Once a Week You Should
* Check to make sure that the indicator light on the front of the detector is solid green in color.
* Using the soft brush attachment on your Vacuum Cleaner; vacuum off the detector cover.
* Using a clean moist lint free cloth or paper towel wipe off the front of the detector. Dry with a lint free soft cloth.
WARNING: As mentioned earlier Propane Detectors are sensitive to other chemicals, so you should not use any chemicals or solvents directly on or near the detector. If you do it may damage the sensors and/or cause false alarms.
At this point I would have liked to have given you a list of alarm and light codes for your detector and what they all mean, but again these alarm codes vary by detector model and manufacturer.
I should note here that on certain model detectors an intermittent alarm and red light can indicate that the detector is not getting sufficient voltage to operate properly, so you may want to check the voltage on your RV's house batteries especially if this beeping is only occurring when the RV is not plugged into shore power.
Lastly, if this beeping continues, it may be time to replace the detector. If this is the case you may want to consider buying a Dual Detector that Detects both Propane and Carbon Monoxide.
A Dual Detector with a Solenoid may be the right choice for you. The solenoid attaches to the main line leaving your RV's propane tank, so that when the alarm goes off the your main propane tank shuts itself off. These types of detectors are a bit more expensive, but at least you will have the peace of mind that if a propane leak occurs and you are not in the RV; the propane will shut down automatically preventing a possible explosion and fire.
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