Bottled LPG v. Auto LPG

Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 16:18


Went to town yesterday and had to get 2x45 kg. (swap) LPG gas bottles @ $121 each.

On my way home, driving past the servo I happened to notice on the price board that vehicle LPG selling at 80.9 cents a litre, I thought, "Jeez I reckon that's a bit dear"

Anyhow sitting doing a bit of paper work before tea, I thinks about the gas prices again, so I decide to do a calculator comparison. Cripes!!

Apparently a litre of LPG weighs half a kilogram and working on that:

At servo bowser prices my 45 kg bottle = 90 litres x 80.9 cents =
$72.80. per bottle, that equates to $48.20 cheaper per bottle than I had to pay ($121each).
By the way I also have to pay $55 each for yearly gas bottle rental.

Maybe someone can tell us if the LPG used for bottled gas is different quality to auto gas ?

How do these prices compare to the prices you pay, these are SE- Sth Aus.

Regards Nick
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AnswerID: 323987   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 16:31

balko replied:

None..... you can buy a old fitting from the wreckers and put it on the side of ute that go,s to your bottle on the back of the ute. HEAPS cheaper but dont let them see you. Cheers tb
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FollowupID: 591145   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 10:33

balko posted:

So am i right or am i going to blow up next time i buy cheap gas for my 9kg bottle for the carravan Cheers Balko
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AnswerID: 323988   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 16:31

Dave(NSW) replied:

Nick, 45Kg bottles LPG are Propane, Auto gas is a combination of Propane & Butane.
Cheers Dave....
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AnswerID: 323995   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 16:57

Member - barry F (NSW) replied:

G'day Nick, I cant comment as to whether not there is any difference between Auto LPG & LPG used for domestic purposes.
We use 45 Kg Cylinders for home heating & the delivered price is $85 per cylinder here in Newcastle. We also pay rental on the cylinders, the cook is not home at the moment so can't ask her how much it is but I think it is considerably less than $55.
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FollowupID: 591063   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 19:20

Sir Kev & Darkie posted:


Can you get them to deliver a few 45kg bottles up here for me. It costs $140 per 45kg bottle up here.

Cheers Kev
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AnswerID: 323997   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 17:23

Member - Olcoolone (S.A) The O replied:

Auto LPG is a bit more refined then bottle LPG.

With LPG for BBQ's and the likes you are paying a handling and storage fee.

What you got charged seems very steep, we pay about $70.00 per 45Kg delivered to metro Adelaide plus a $55.00 yearly fee.

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FollowupID: 591136   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 09:40

Louie the fly (SA) posted:

$70? Who do you buy your LPG from? We pay $109 from Kleenheat in Verdun (delivered). Thats if you pay by card over the phone.
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AnswerID: 324005   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 17:51

MrBitchi (QLD) replied:

Price of LPG at my local (southside Brisbane) is 61.9
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AnswerID: 324009   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 18:09

Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) replied:

A few years ago when i owned acreage, we had gas bottles for heating only. The gas delivery service was so poor, i decided to use 9kg bottles, it was actually much cheaper but a 9kg bottle only lasts a few days so it was a pain . Price wise, i could fill a 9kg for $10 but i still can fill in the south west suburbs of Sydney, where i work for $16 now so if you times by 5,, it gives you your 45 kg, its still only $80 in todays money.. A 30% saving... food for thought.. Michael
Patrol 4.2TDi 2003 390,000 Ks on the clock and still going slow!

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AnswerID: 324012   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 18:54

Member - Serg (VIC) replied:

Bottled LPG, BBQ LPG and car LPG is the same stuff. I would think that car one (cheapest) actually cleanest. They simply rip you off because they can. Get car gas tank from wrecker, put it on ute and refill it. You will save fortune, though I think it is illegal.

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AnswerID: 324044   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 21:13


Interesting to read some of the shoot from the hip" replies regarding the differences between auto & bbq gas. Davo is correct in that auto gas is a propane/butane blend whereas "bbq gas" is propane.

There is a VERY good reason why the blend of the two gasses is illegal to sell as BBQ gas - they have different specific gravities and will seperate in the gas bottle unless regularly shaken.

Should the two gasses remain seperate, at the point where the liquid propane is expended (butane is heavier than propane) during combustion (say in the situation of an stove or bbq burner) there is a risk that the flame may extinguish during the change to the utilisation of butane for the combustion process.

Blind Freddy would realise the implications of this situation, particularly in the case of the indoor stove.

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FollowupID: 591084   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 21:32

Member - Serg (VIC) posted:

Sorry, mate to disappoint you, but you talking utter rubbish. Trust me – I am chemical engineer by education. Chances that propane and butane separates in bottle as good as chances that alcohol and water separate in bottle of vodka. It is possible that BBQ gas has more butane contents and even possible that it is pure butane (I personally do not believe it though). But it is total rubbish that propane-butane mixture “unsafe” for burning in BBQ. It been used for ages in former Soviet Union (and in use now) without any ill effect. Even if it pure propane it is for totally different reason – propane boiling point lover then butane and therefore chances that bottle get “frozen” get lover. There is very easy remedy if performance of gas appliance decrease because of bottle get too cold – just pour boiling water over. And besides butane is better to burn because it has more energy contents.

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FollowupID: 591086   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 21:33

Member - Serg (VIC) posted:

Should be of course “BBQ gas has more propane…”
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FollowupID: 591097   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 22:25

Dave(NSW) posted:

The question was is there a difference between Auto Gas & LPG bottles and in most places there is. Propane burns a lot hotter than Butane, But all Gas is over priced when I see what they do with some deliveries.
Cheers Dave...
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FollowupID: 591099   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 22:42

Member - Serg (VIC) posted:

Nope. Per mol butane of course produce more energy because it has more carbon-carbon bonds. But due to different mol weight and density per kilo propane is tad better while per litre butane is tad better. No way “a lot”

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AnswerID: 324056   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 22:05

Ianw replied:

Lets get the facts right mates..
Car gas is largely unrefined gas straight out of the ground. Thats why it is a lot cheaper. It is a mix of mainly propane and butane.
LPG for home use is pure refined propane. Butane is used in cigarette lighters. In some remote locations car gas is the same as home LPG simply because it is uneconomic to take 2 truckloads of different gases to remote areas. Car gas can be used in BBQs (outdoor) but I would not be using in the home because of the unknown and variable mix of gases and therefore unknown emissions. In fact, when I lived in Wantirna (Melbourne) the local servo used to fill its BBQ gas refiller bottle straight from the car gas dispenser.

BTW the price of a 45kg bottle of gas in SW Vic is $90. Annual rental $28. Maybe you should hop across the border to get your gas , Nick !!

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FollowupID: 591156   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 15:26

Gazal Champion posted:

Hi all,
My brother recently imported a motorhome from America which has an auto gas filler point on it. The vehicle runs on petrol only and the gas filler point fills the on board gas storage tank for the stove and the fridge.

The filler is the same fitting used on our vehicles for engine gas.

In America they do not discriminate between gas for appliance use or engine use, They fill both from the same bowser.

Now they may have a different gas mixture over there, I would not know about that but I doubt it.

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AnswerID: 324061   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 22:54

Member - Jeff H (QLD) replied:

Top point Nw,
And jury seems out.
So good onya for raising a point that many of us think about, but just shrug the flamin shoulders and pay the price, eh.

We burn about 40kg/annum,(kitchen stove only), so if density separation were to happen, it would surely happen here.
The 2kg bottles in the back of the ute are pretty well shaken AND (dis) stirred prior to each use, but they cost a mint to fill.
Add to that the 10 year test date, and that's why I've gone (largely) to charcoal.
Best I stop, but I'm pleased you made the point.Very interesting.
Jeff H.
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AnswerID: 324062   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 22:54

Member - Olcoolone (S.A) The O replied:

From the RACQ web site.

"What is LPG fuel?
Liquefied petroleum gas (LP gas or LPG) is a hydrocarbon fuel comprising propane, butane or propylene, either separately or as a mixture of any of them. Automotive LPG is not the same as the LPG used in BBQ bottles.

The quality of LPG for automotive use is controlled to ensure consistent vehicle performance under all driving conditions. The gas is liquefied under moderate pressure; when allowed to revert to vapour it expands 270 times its liquid volume.

This enables LPG to be stored as a compact liquid but burnt as a dry gaseous vapour. LPG is non-toxic, non-corrosive, free of lead and heavier than air. It is produced by refinery fractionation of oil or is stripped from naturally occurring Natural Gas.

From the Supagas web site.

Is LP Gas used to fuel motor vehicles?
Yes, LP Gas is used to fuel motor vehicles, however a combination of propane and butane (also known as blend) is used. It's different to heating gas and BBQ gas, which is straight propane.

Can I use propane in my car?
Yes, you can use propane in your car, however most places don't sell straight propane because it's slightly more expensive than blend (propane/butane mix). It's thought that straight propane is better for your car (in both environmental and in performance terms) and our Somerton branch on Hume Highway happens to sell straight Propane so next time you're going past - pull in, fill up and you be the judge.

What is the mix in blend?
The mix in blend is a combination of propane and butane normally around 50/50. Blend is commonly used for forklifts and motor vehicles. The exact percentage varies all the time and is available on request. Phone our Dandenong Branch on (30) 9706 6262 to find out more.

From the Autogas web site.

What is LPG Autogas?
LPG stands for Liquefied Petroleum Gas and is the generic name used for mixtures of hydrocarbons (mainly propane and butane). When these mixtures are lightly compressed (approx.800 kPa or 120 psi) they change from a gaseous state to a liquid.
LPG is colourless, odourless and heavier than air. A chemical is added to give it a smell like rotten cabbage, so that even a very small leak can be easily detected. LPG burns readily in air and has an energy content similar to petrol, which makes it an excellent fuel for heating, cooking and for automotive use.

Automotive use LPG is quite often called Autogas (or LPG Autogas) and is specifically designed for use in a vehicle. LPG Autogas can contain both propane and butane with the specification (or blend) governed by the requirements of the National Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000 and the Autogas Determination 2003.

Is LPG Autogas different to LPG used in a BBQ?
YES. There are two different grades or blends of LPG and they are not interchangeable. LPG Autogas is for automotive use only and will be a mixture of propane and butane. The other blend is propane, which can only be used for decanting into cylinders for barbecues, camping, caravanning and household use.

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FollowupID: 591105   Submitted: Friday, Sep 05, 2008 at 23:17

Ianw posted:

And ???

So ???

Conclusion ???

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FollowupID: 591111   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 01:14

wafarmer posted:

"From the Autogas website"

Ha ha ha ah ha ha ha ha I wish they would tell the local servo in my town that has "auto gas" and also fills bbq bottles et al.

All the gas that fills both comes from the same tank on the tanker it is the same gas so the above is a crock of you know what the whole gas supply chain is a closed club of lies and deceit to look after the marketers and protect them from competition and is a fraud on the public

See if you can get them to tell you if the two gases are mixed or used separately or are substituted for each other in domestic or automotive applications.

You wont get a straight answer, I couldn't

The big boys only like competition when they are sticking it to the little guy but look close they don't like it applied to them.

Just look at the Northwest shelf gas partner's


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FollowupID: 591129   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 08:53

Member - Olcoolone (S.A) The O posted:

Well if these three companys are wrong then the ACCC should be notified....big fines for advertising incorrect and mis leading information to the consumer if your a provider of the said product.

Unless they are right!

Yeap always trust EO to supply the correct information.

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FollowupID: 591137   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 09:41

wafarmer posted:

Umm remember it is them and their mates who make the rules so they rarely get busted for breaking them, the rules are for keeping us in line not them.

If big fines were levied for missleading the consumer most of the large companies would be broke.

If you don't believe the info on lp gas just email the relevant organizations and ask but make sure your questions are iron tight because you will get a pollies answer.

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AnswerID: 324074   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 06:19

swampy460 replied:


Now I work in the gas industry and can tell you that it all comes from the same tank !

Full stop

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AnswerID: 324093   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 09:29

Zukscooter replied:

Just had Gas inspection on the m/home i asked the inspector what the difference was his blunt answer was the auto gas is the dirty gas.Hope this helps to explain.
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AnswerID: 324136   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 18:06

Ozshooter replied:

To All the gas may be different but I have been using auto lpg in BBQ for about 3 years now with no problems. you just have to be able to fill the bottles
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Reply 14 of 16
AnswerID: 324151   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 18:53

Paul Grabonski. Vic replied:

used auto gas for 20 yrs at home and in caravan
never had a problem with anything
have 2 gas hot water, gas cooking, gas central heating, gas bbq
in caravan gas hot water, gas fridge, gas cooking, gas bbq
fill up the Ford on the way home from work then fill 2 x 9kg and then refill the Ford on way to work in the morning
9kg bottle cost $11/$12
do keep my 9kg bottles in date by changeover or buy new bottle when on special for $25/$30

next door mate has deloused fork lift bottle he fills to fill his house and caravan gas bottles
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AnswerID: 324177   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 06, 2008 at 21:36

harlequin replied:

swampy & serg are absolutely correct ,no discernible difference each may vary in the proportion of propane butane but thats it. been filling lpg from servos for last 12 years also decant from 45 kg to 9kg and 2.5 kg the only thing is be careful not only illegal but hazardous at best keep short the tube from the filler to bottle it is pumped in at a much higher preassure than static storage use,flared compression with liquid teflon check with snoop and when you unhook even with a non return the residual gas in the lines is liquid make sure no static and claer windy spot, pure butane or propane are hellishly expensive.dont believe any company/corporation with a vested interest.
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