The weekend is here. It’s summer and the weather is great! Time to enjoy a nice BBQ in the backyard. Invite a few friends over, head out to the market and pick up some burgers and hot dogs, maybe some steaks and fresh juicy corn. It’s a great plan, but don’t forget to check the most important guest to a BBQ – your propane tank.
Sometimes you get so wrapped up in whom you are going to invite, getting the table settings looking great, and deciding what food you will be serving, that you simply forget to check how much propane you have left in the tank. But, it can be very embarrassing to start a cookout and then run out of gas, not to mention the huge hassle of having your food halfway cooked and then not having a way to finish off your meal. From muttering under your breath to enduring the laughter of family and friends, running out of propane mid-BBQ is definitely not the situation you want to be in. Nothing ruins a barbecue like having to get in your car and drive around to town to get a full tank of propane so everyone can eat. Trust me, I speak from experience – it’s the perfect way to mess up an otherwise fun-filled afternoon or evening.
So what to do? How do you avoid this embarrassing and inconvenient occurrence? One of the best investments I made was to get a propane gauge and level indicator. I simply went online and bought one. This has made it easier to see how much propane gas is left in the tank so I can know when I’m running low on fuel. You can buy a propane gauge for about $20 and it’s very simple to install. You screw one end of the propane gauge into the propane tank and the other end goes into the gas line to your grill. There is a glass on the gauge that will tell you how much propane is left in your tank. Propane tank gauges give you the most accurate reading after they have been used for awhile rather than when you first turn the grill on. So, when you turn your gas off, make a mental note of how much propane you have left before the next time you fire the grill up.
While looking to exchange or fill your propane tank, don’t forget to first compare propane gas prices. No need to go driving all over town looking to save a few cents, especially if you have guests waiting at home for a meal. Just make a note of your propane supplier’s price and those in the local area, or call ahead for the prices at a tank exchange center you see at some of the big retailers when you know you’re starting to get low on propane, so you’ll know the best place to go when you need to refuel. After all, it’s nice to save a bit of money when it doesn’t require much more effort, isn’t it?
While your propane tank may not be the most exciting part of your backyard BBQ, there is no doubt that it is one of the most important, because without enough propane gas in the tank to cook your food, there really is no BBQ at all. So, to save yourself the hassles and embarrassment that can go along with running out of propane, be sure to buy a cheap propane gauge so you’ll be able to keep track of when you need to refill or exchange your propane tank. And by checking propane gas prices before you head out to buy more, you may be able to save yourself enough to buy an extra cold beer or two to enjoy with your meal.