O.Reg 211/01 - Fixed Level Gauge

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Frank
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O.Reg 211/01 - Fixed Level Gauge

Post by Frank » Tue Feb 13, 2007 9:54 am

ONTARIO REGULATION 211/01 - PROPANE STORAGE AND HANDLING

Greg J asked me about the subsections (6) and (7) of section 25 of this regulation, which seem to imply that the the spit valve must be used even if the fuel tank is equipped with an Overfill Protection Device (OPD - stop-fill valve):

Vehicle operation
25.
  1. No person shall operate, or permit to be operated, a vehicle that is converted to use propane after this Regulation comes into force unless the labels required by the code adoption document are affixed to the vehicle. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (1).
  2. No person shall operate, or permit to be operated, a vehicle that is converted to use propane unless the propane fuel system complies with this Regulation or, where the vehicle was converted before this Regulation came into force, unless it complies with the requirements of the predecessor to this Regulation as it existed when it was converted. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (2).
  3. No person shall connect, or permit to be connected, a gasoline or propane fuelling nozzle to the fuel fill point of a vehicle equipped with a propane appliance unless the supply of propane to the main burners and pilot burners of the appliance is shut off. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (3).
  4. An operator of a vehicle with a propane appliance installed on it shall shut off, or cause to be shut off, the supply of propane to the main burner and pilot burner of the appliance before a gasoline or propane fuelling nozzle is connected by anyone to the fuel fill point of the vehicle. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (4).
  5. Except as permitted by the code adoption document, no person shall park a propane vehicle intended primarily for highway use inside a building if a cylinder containing propane is mounted, installed or stored in or on the vehicle. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (5).
  6. No person shall supply propane to a tank installed on a propane vehicle unless the fixed liquid level gauge of the tank remains open during the filling operation. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (6).
  7. A person filling a tank using a fixed liquid level gauge shall immediately stop filling and close the gauge when liquid propane appears at the outlet of the gauge. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (7).
  8. No person shall transfer propane to the tank of a propane vehicle on a highway except in accordance with a procedure that has been accepted as being consistent with public safety. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (8 ).
  9. No person shall operate a propane vehicle unless the service valve of the propane tank on the vehicle is fully open when the engine of the vehicle is operating on propane fuel. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (9).
===========
After a discussion with TSSA about this question, I have learned that TSSA has drafted a change in the O. Reg. 211/01, Section 25.(6) to read:

(6) Where the propane tank is not equipped with a stop-fill valve, no person shall supply propane to a tank installed on a propane vehicle unless the fixed liquid level gauge of the tank remains open during the filling operation. O. Reg. 211/01, s. 25 (6).

This proposed change, among others, will be sent to the Ministry office for Government approval. It is expected that the approval may be ready by this summer. This will bring O. Reg. 211/01 in line with CSA B149.5.

Greg J
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Post by Greg J » Tue Feb 13, 2007 1:16 pm

Thanks Frank,
That is good information about the change that is being drafted. The new wording would make things clearer.

To further add to and complicate my question, I was under the impression that for the past few years, any new conversions must have a tank with an automatic stop-fill valve, regardless of if the vehicle had a fixed level spit valve or not. It was my impression that any new conversions cannot use a tank without an automatic stop-fill valve, even if they have a spit valve. Is that true?

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Steptoe
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Post by Steptoe » Tue Feb 13, 2007 3:10 pm

"a fixed level spit valve"
What is this?
Is it what we call the filling bleed valve...it is cracked open and when liquid comes out the tank is full?
In NZ, As I mentioned yesterday in a post, all LPG vechiles in NZ must have a 12 month warrant inspection.
A automatic stop-fill valve became mandatory a few yrs back.

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Post by Greg J » Wed Feb 14, 2007 11:01 am

Some of the same things seem to have many names. Spit valve, bleed valve, bleeder, fixed outage valve, 80% valve, etc. all refer to the same thing. It should be opened slightly during filling and clear vapour will come out. When white liquid comes out the tank is 80% full of liquid and the filling attendant must stop filling the tank and close the spit valve.

I have yet another question, Ontario Reg. 211/01 Section 25 subsection 1, (listed a couple of posts above this one) talks about labels that are required for the converted vehicle, must be affixed to the vehicle. What labels are they talking about exactly? I assume the green windshield sticker would be one of them, or is that all that is required?

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Post by Steptoe » Wed Feb 14, 2007 1:39 pm

Sry back to the bleed valve.
Where dose this bleed to?
The fittings a bleed valve is in a sealed box in the trunk
To access it means opening this sealed cover.
The exhaust for this valve is a rube that exits the car to an outside point beyond the edge of the car...by the time the bleeding liquid reaches the exhaust point and noticed, it is d9ifficult to tell if it is liquid or gas, and even by that time the tank is well above the 80% level.
Before the days of mandatory shut off valve, filling to the 80% level then manually shuting off was far more reliable.
Also opening the bleed valve has a potential risk espec when filling at a public service station with other vechiles, ppl walking around.

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Post by Greg J » Thu Feb 15, 2007 11:57 am

I'll do my best to describe how a fixed liquid level gauge (spit valve, bleed valve) works. I will be talking about the North American type of tank that usually have five threaded holes. (Liquid outlet, Vapour outlet, relief valve, filler, fixed outage). There is another unthreaded hole that a special liquid level gauge bolts into with a gasket and has a float assembly inside the tank.

Sometimes the liquid outlet is 3/4 the way or more to the top of the tank. There is a permanent tube welded inside of the tank that almost touches the bottom of the tank, so that liquid will always be drawn. The other outlets may have such tubes in the tank as well to connect with the correct space (liquid or vapour).

The fixed liquid level gauge (it isn't really a guage! more like a threaded bleed screw) is setup one of two ways. Either threaded in directly to the tank or located remotely, usually with a length of propane approved hose. North American tanks have a hole with a 1/4" female pipe thread for this purpose. They may have a permanent tube welded inside to connect with the vapour space near the top of the tank. Sometimes a 90 degree brass fitting is installed in the 1/4" hole. It isn't a regular fitting! It has a special restrictor pressed into it, and the actual opening is about the same as the tip of a ball point pen or less. Sometimes a restrictor of the same nature is attached within the 1/4" opening of the tank. Sometimes the bleeder hose can be as long as four feet. I've never seen it any longer but theoretically it could be. It is attached to a fitting and coupler and then to an actual manually operated bleeder usually located beside the filler. The brass bleeder has 1/4" male pipe threads and it also has a restrictor in it. The hole is very small. If the bleeder is not located beside the filler, it is threaded directly into the tank if the location is accessible during filling. Presumably the filler would also be located directly on the tank and be accessible. The base of the bleeder has 1/4" male pipe threads and remains threaded and sealed to the tank or vehicle. There is a little knob sticking out that is turned by hand.

If the tank was in the trunk with a vapour seal box, then the bleeder hose would go through the larger vapour hose ducting to the exterior of the vehicle near the filler. The vapour seal box on the tank should always be kept closed.

During filling when the liquid level rises in the tank to the manufacturer's determined 80% level, there will be a noticeable change in the sound of the hiss and the difference between vapour and liquid at the bleeder valve. Even if the bleeder is located remotely, this change is fast and quite noticeable and I don't think a hose length of four feet or less would make much difference and with an alert attendant it should be very close to 80% full.

It is true that vapours are released while the bleeder is open during filling. The vapours aren't very much and disperse rapidly. Fortunately rules in Canada are such that (obviously!) no smoking in the area, pumps a certain distance from buildings, pilot burner or main burner inside vehicle turned off (camper, special vehicle), and even nearby lighting of the pump has to be approved. Likely more rules than that for filling stations.

With the new auto-stop fill valves for tanks, bleeders may not be required and might save the minor vapour release. I guess that is good but I would still prefer to have a manual bleeder present to verify that the auto-stop is actually working. With some pumps on certain conditions the pump can "sneak by" the auto-stop valve. That could certainly lead to overfilling.

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Post by Steptoe » Thu Feb 15, 2007 2:01 pm

Fortunately rules in Canada are such that (obviously!) no smoking in the area, pumps a certain distance from buildings, pilot burner or main burner inside vehicle turned off (camper, special vehicle), and even nearby lighting of the pump has to be approved
The draw back with rules is they are not always kept to AND that is when things go wrong.
I have been filling LPG for 30yrs.
1/NO ONE but me ever touches my car!! I have learnt from experience Never to trust that trained forecourt staff are trained or know what they are doing...I have had 3 of these ppl fired over the yrs.
2/Before mandatory shutoff valves, I always filled by the guage.Last thing I need is some idiot walk past with a cigarette, or get out of a car next to me with static electricity on a calm day....and it has happened too many times to count.

In my experience from handling bulk LPG to filling, even to consider bleed valves as an option in regulations is stupid and obsolete.
In saying that, to reduce failures (shut off valves are very reliable) mandatory 12 month Warrant of Fitness (WoF) as in NZ and 10yr tank surveys should also be introduced.
Tank survey expired, no WoF , No WoF, no fill.

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