Propane or liquified petroleum gas (LP-gas) systems in RVs are key to having many of the comforts of home on the road. But, like all fuels, LP-gas has its hazards. As long as the system is tight and leak-free, it is safe. However, should a leak develop as a result of damage or defective hoses or connections, gas will flow until the container is empty, potentially creating a hazardous situation. Granted, modern trailers have ACME fittings that have a valve that will restrict flow to 5 percent if it senses a leak, but flow is not shut off completely.
Enter the GasStop emergency shutoff device ($79.95). GasStop is an easy-to-install in-line automatic shutoff and gauge that promises to add an element of safety to the LP-gas system on the RV. Sold in both POL and ACME fittings for all RV propane systems, the GasStop has been in use in Europe for some time and is now available here.
The GasStop fixture attaches between the LP-gas cylinder and the high-pressure gas line. When the cylinder is opened, depressing the pop-up gauge begins gas flow. For RVs with multiple LP-gas cylinders, one device is attached to each cylinder. Should a major leak occur, it will cut the flow 100 percent. Depressing the gauge again restores flow.
I’m always interested in increasing safety, so I installed the GasStop on my fifth-wheel. I conducted a simple test by loosening a fitting on the LP-gas system, and it worked. It’s not a panacea for LP-gas safety, but it is a big step forward in the event of a major leak.
— Chris Dougherty, Trailer Life Technical Editor
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