Cooking with a propane grill is without a doubt one of life’s simple pleasures. But before you can get those burgers sizzling on the grill, you’ve got to hook up your propane tank to your grill properly.
Propane tank manufacturers have put a good deal of effort into making propane tanks as foolproof as possible. You don’t need to be a licensed gasfitter to figure this out, but there is a right and wrong way to hook up a propane tank to a grill.
I’ll break down exactly how to hook up a propane tank to a grill in step-by-step detail, so you can set up your own grill in time for that weekend barbeque.
Hooking Up a Propane Tank to a Grill – Guide
Step 1: Ensure the Gas Valve is Off
The first thing you want to ensure is that the tank’s gas valve is in the off position. If it’s a new tank then it should be set in the off position from the get-go.
If it’s not, then turn the valve in a clockwise direction until it can’t be turned anymore.
Step 2: Remove the Seal
Now go ahead and remove the plastic safety seal from the tank.
Step 3: Inspect the Tank and Gasket
Next up, take a quick look over both the propane tank and the gasket to ensure there is no serious damage either to the tank or to the gasket. The gasket can actually become warped over time, so take a good look at it to make sure it’s perfectly round and free of damage or defects.
Step 4: Examine the Grill’s Owner’s Manual
Generally speaking, installing a propane tank is about the same no matter what type of grill you’re dealing with. Nevertheless, it’s a good idea to take a glance at your owner’s manual and see if there is anything specific to your particular grill.
Sometimes the instructions will be found directly attached to the regulator hose, as was in my case.
Step 5: Inspect the Grill’s Regulator
Next up, take a closer look at the grill’s regulator to ensure it’s free of defects. Look for any obvious holes or gaps in the hose or deformities to the regulator.
Step 6: Attach the Regulator to the Tank
At this point, you can attach the regulator to the gasket on the propane tank.
Line it up the coupler with the gasket and carefully screw the two together until they reach a complete stop.
Step 7: Fit Propane Tank in Grill Rack
Now you can fit the propane tank inside your grill rack. These will differ in design from one grill to another, so the process can be slightly different depending on your specific grill.
In my case, there is a large circular cutout in the base of the grill to house the bottom of the propane tank. A set screw allows you to adjust the size of the base to accommodate different tank sizes.
Step 8: Test out the Grill
Now, rotate the tank’s gas valve to the ‘ON’ position by turning the valve in the counterclockwise position until it can’t be turned anymore. Then turn your grill’s burner knobs to the ‘High’ setting and press the electric ignition button until the flames ignite.
A word about safety:
Modern propane grills have a safety feature that restricts the flow of propane when there is a gas leak. That means if you start noticing a low flame and temperature, there may be a leak in your regulator hose, and you should perform a gas leak test to determine if, in fact, you do have a leak.