How deep does a propane tank need to be buried?

propane tank with wear

Burying your propane

Propane gas is commonly used in a compressed liquid form by homeowners in a canister attached to their outdoor grill. It is also used by homeowners in rural areas for bathing, cooking, hot water uses from a larger tank that is located behind or the side of the house. For that purpose, there is an option for an underground propane tank, which we are going to discuss in this article. 

Discussions of natural gas and  propane often sound as if the two are interchangeable, and while they are similar, they are not interchangeable.  Both forms of gas can be used for cooking and heating. Both forms are used to power vehicles today. However, how they are sourced, the associated costs, and physical makeup of them make the difference.  

So, you already understand the cylinder tank for the grill Why would you want an underground propane tank vs above ground to use in your home? Here are six underground propane tank pros and cons to consider: 

  • Aesthetics: If your home or business is out in a rural area where the closest neighbor isn’t within eyesight, the above-ground propane tank probably isn’t an issue. If you’re in an area that is developing, perhaps acre lots with custom-built homes, then appearance is important and an above-ground propane tank would be unsightly, taking away from the charm and curb appeal. 
  • Budget: The underground propane tank will have a higher cost than the above-ground because there is some excavation needed in addition to protective equipment that prevents corrosion and groundwater contamination. 
  • Security: An underground propane tank is safer than an above-ground propane tank. Above ground propane tanks are sometimes a target for vandals and if located close to the driveway, it can make entering and exiting difficult. 
  • Temperature: An underground tank is better suited for intense temperatures, particularly cold climates because the earth keeps them warm. 
  • Floating Issues: If the hole for the underground propane tank fills with water, the tank will float up. This can be minimized by placing a concrete slab above the tank. 
  • Upkeep: Above ground propane tanks offer easy maintenance and an underground propane tank needs to be inspected for the anti-corrosion component and tested to assure it doesn’t have any functioning problems. 

What kind of pipe is used for propane underground?

Black steel is the most common with brass, copper, and galvanized steel following by what is best suited or required for the area. Check with your local jurisdiction for any regulations they may have for underground propane tank installation. The propane tank service you choose to work with will be able to assist. 

Can underground propane tanks explode?

Propane tanks do not explode, implode, or rupture, above ground or underground. They do not come apart either. It is almost impossible to make a propane tank explode, the task of trying would be a extremely difficult. As long as proper operation and precautions are performed, an above ground or underground propane tank will last and work without any issues. 

How far should a propane tank be from a house?

Ten feet is the minimum distance for a propane tank to be placed from a building and ten feet is the minimum distance a tank must be placed from a property line. Multiple tanks must be three feet apart with a restriction clearance of 25 feet for increases. 

How long will an underground propane tank last?

Underground propane tank is environmentally friendly and will up to forty years when properly protected against corrosion and rust. Should an underground propane tank have a leak, very unlikely that will happen, the gas is non-toxic and won’t pollute the soil or underground water. 

three propane tanks

What is the life expectancy of a 500 gallon propane tank?

High quality galvanized propane tank that is properly maintained with regular inspections have a life expectancy of thirty years. A propane tank made of aluminum and composite cylinders has a longer lifespan. 

If an underground propane tank is of interest to you, do a google search for a “propane tank company that sells, installs, and provides underground propane tank refill near me.” Get two or three quotes and compare the tank pricing, the service programs, and other benefits they offer. 

Why would you choose an underground propane tank over natural gas if you have a choice?  In many areas, you don’t have a choice, if you want gas cooking, heating, and hot water, propane is the only option. Fortunately, propane is more efficient than natural gas. It delivers more per gallon (measured as BTU) and burns less volume in an hour than natural gas, a two-to-one ratio. This makes propane not only a natural source of energy, but it is energy-efficient, less expensive, and more applications are turning to propane gas as an alternative, even for vehicles. Give us a call today at 817-341-7240.