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# Moving into a house heated by LPG - calculating remaining LPG in tank

Posts: 86 Forumite
edited 16 April 2021 at 1:48PM
Just about to buy a house heated by an LPG heating system.  A new experience for me.
Seller is wanting to negotiate a price for the remaining fuel in the tank.
I've offered to pay for the fuel at the current rate given by the current supplier which is 36.9ppl.  600 X 0.369 = 221.40    (£220.00).
I understand that there is a gauge that should only be considered a guide as it works in a similar way to a cars fuel tank.
I'm told it is a 1200ltr tank, but i'm also told it has a 1410ltr capacity!!   I'm assuming until proven otherwise that its max contents should be no more than 1200ltrs giving 210lts of expansion etc.
Then i'm being informed that i need to ascertain the “water capacity” of the tank from information on the data plate!
The current supplier says "The tank at <The Property> should have a 100% capacity of 1410 ltrs".
How do i and the seller fairly work out what the fuel in the tank is worth?
Is it fair to say if it's 50% full then i'll pay for 600ltrs at 36.9ppl?

Water capacity......... do i assume that these tanks have an amount of water build up that sits either at the top or bottom of the tank to factor in?????  Or is water used to measure the capacity of the tank?
Is there a formula to work out what the tank is holding.  I'm assuming that there are only three accurate readings, Full, half way and empty.  Anything in between is inaccurate because of the circular shape of the tank.

• Posts: 2,149 Forumite
edited 16 April 2021 at 2:18PM
Water cannot get into an LPG tank with any liquid gas in it due to the gas pressure!  (Unlike oil where it can sit under the oil in a tank that is vented to the atmosphere).

Water capacity = the amount of water the tank, as manufactured, will hold (to a specified point/level).  Home Bulk LPG storage tanks with a gas capacity of 1200 litres (1410 water capacity) or 2000 litres (2400 water capacity) are common.

A full tank occupies 85-87% of the tank space at a maximum (safety/expansion/pressurisation reasons).  Just the same as a small lpg gas bottle for a BBQ!

Many house sales don't bother charging for the LPG or oil in a tank (nor coal/coke/wood in a store) - it's usually <in the noise> of any house sale price.  There's no way that the owners can take it with them so if you call their bluff and say "no thanks"...

The gauge is the only indication of a liquid level in an underground tank.  I don't know if they calibrate the meter to show gas is "full" at 85% of the water full mark or not (it would be possible)?  The bulk lpg thread may shed more light if you read through it?

Above ground tank: if gas is being drawn off at a high rate you might see a line of condensation from the air, where the top of the liquid LPG sits.

My heating is running again today, as it's cold this April so their gas level is dropping daily (and a tank level gauge will vary with temperature, too).

NB bulk lpg gas price (and oil) is almost always quoted as ex (5%) VAT.  It also varies a lot region by region and supplier.  Do shop around and get a good deal once you move in!
• Posts: 1,949 Forumite
Tell them you don't want the fuel.
• Posts: 86 Forumite
edited 16 April 2021 at 2:34PM
Initially i ignored the presence of fuel in the tank as we have gone on in the hope that it would get forgotten about.  I knew i was in trouble when i received a list of things that the seller was wanting me to pay for if i wanted them.  Curtains, blinds green waste bin and more.  I've said i'm not interested in paying for these things but the honest and decent thing was to say i'd pay for the remaining fuel in the tank on the day things happen.

She wanted £50 for the green waste bin that she probably got when they were free.  I understand that my local council are currently charging £20 for them new!!   She wanted a lot of money for curtains and blinds that i'll be able to replace new for half the cost!!

So i'm expecting problems with how much the LPG is worth.
• Posts: 1,800 Forumite
pramsay13 said:
Tell them you don't want the fuel.
This - call her bluff
• Posts: 8,606 Forumite
As said above, either tell them you dont want it or just make an nominal offer, say £50, take it or leave it. There's not really all that much they can do about it as it's not the sort of thing they can take away and use somewhere else.

In the end if  they are charging a reasonable amount for stuff, that you specifically want, then by all means have it otherwise get them to take it away as you dont really want the hassle of getting rid of their rubbish.
Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large numbers
• Posts: 437 Forumite
My local council says that the green and blue bins that they provide free belong to the property, and are not to be taken away during house sales. It is stated on the council website.
• Posts: 6,439 Forumite

The gas is irrelevant in the grand scheme of things, so, as others have said ... just say you don't want it!

• Posts: 86 Forumite
Blue & Green bins are as you say obligatory and belong to the council here and are for you to use, but we buy our Green Waste Bins here. Green waste bins are actually black in colour and used for the purpose of recycling garden waste, grass and hedge clippings and more from the garden.

The LPG Gas.............. I'm going to just step back for a few days and see what comes back at the end of which as you all say i'll just say i don't want it.

Since my initial post It has come to my attention that the service history for the 3yrs old boiler is also incomplete.  She missed her Dec 2020 service so the remaining warranty is theoretically null and void.  I would guess it's late now to get it serviced to keep it's warranty.  A month perhaps 6 weeks late ok but 4 months late is probably pushing it i think myself.  It would have had a 7yr warranty, 4yrs left on it all things being done correctly.

So yes if she can't be co-operative and be fair then i'll say i just simply don't want it.
• Posts: 731 Forumite
Since my initial post It has come to my attention that the service history for the 3yrs old boiler is also incomplete.  She missed her Dec 2020 service so the remaining warranty is theoretically null and void.  I would guess it's late now to get it serviced to keep it's warranty.  A month perhaps 6 weeks late ok but 4 months late is probably pushing it i think myself.  It would have had a 7yr warranty, 4yrs left on it all things being done correctly.

So yes if she can't be co-operative and be fair then i'll say i just simply don't want it.
Quite possibly C19 related reason for service being missed,so might be more leeway available there than would usually be the case,ask her to clarify why service was missed,better still ask for details and check yourself,preferably.
If nothing doing then I'd be asking for appropriate redress for being saddled with an unwarranted and partially serviced boiler.

Maybe consider having the tank filled to capacity and pay for the difference,that'll give an accurate enough measurement of the already present gas amount,satisfactory to you both.
Does seem as if she's being unnecessarily petty,dont get landed with any junk you dont want and ensure anything she wants is taken with her,not left for you to dispose of.

I previously owned a LPG Landrover it's fuel gage was calibrated to display 100% full when the LPG tank was filled to 80% capacity,50% full at 40% capacity,and so on.Imagine the bulk tank will be the same with the shortfall being unusable to allow for expansion,although I couldn't swear to it as being 100% guaranteed.

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