Paint Ideas for a Propane Tank

Written by kristen marquette
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Paint Ideas for a Propane Tank
Do not paint over the data tag on your propane tank; otherwise it cannot be refilled legally. (Propane Tank image by John Walsh from Fotolia.com)

If you want to paint your propane tank, the National Fire Protection Agency limits your paint options to reflective colours only. You may want to paint your unsightly propane tank to blend in with the landscape or match the colour of your house. But if you choose the wrong colour, the paint may absorb the sun's heat, causing the propane to expand and resulting in a hazardous gas leak.

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Reflective Colors

The paint colour of your propane tank needs to reflect heat to prevent the propane inside the tank from expanding and leaking through the relief valve. Because light colours reflect heat, you have a choice of light colours--traditional white, a pale green to help the tank blend in with the grass or a cheery light yellow. You can also choose a pretty lilac or other pastel colours. Many local agencies regulate the colours a propane tank can be painted, so before carrying out the paint job, call your local gas company to ensure you've chosen a safe and appropriate colour.

Non-Reflective Colors

When deciding on a paint colour, don't choose a dark colour such as black, navy blue or forest green. Dark colours absorb heat, which causes propane to expand and increases pressure inside the tank. Some gas companies may refuse to fill a dark-coloured tank. In addition, once the tank leaks, you will need to replace the escaped propane and repair the relief valve, both costly endeavours.

However, if you live in an extremely cold climate, a dark paint colour may be allowed. Check with your gas company.

Designs

You can add a design to your propane tank to make it look more festive. Remaining within the allowed colours, you can make the tank checkered, polka-dotted or striped. You could also paint it pale blue and decorate it with white clouds to help it blend in with the sky. If you have artistic talent, you could paint a mural on it; if not, you can use stencils to add flowers or shapes.

Rust

If your propane tank is rusted, it must be painted. Because rust is a dark colour, it presents a safety hazard. Also, rust will continue to eat away at the surface of the tank, compromising its integrity. Before painting your rusted tank a light colour, sand it down or scrape it with a wire brush.

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