Gas bottles – who could live without them?! We speak with honesty about everything you need to know, including which types of gas to order for your holiday home, sizes, and things to look out for when it comes to heating and cooking in your holiday home.
Holiday homeowners, tourer caravan enthusiasts and even those thinking of purchasing a static caravan will know how integral gas bottles are to the holiday home life. From heating your static caravan to fuelling cooking appliances (and sometimes even fridges and water heaters!) it’s safe to say that gas is the one element you can’t go without.
In this blog post, we’ll answer some of the most common questions prospective holiday home buyers ask. For any current owners, whether with Lyons Holiday Parks or another site in the UK, we hope some of this information will add a touch of Calor to your existing knowledge of gas…
1. Which gas bottles are best for static caravans?
There are generally two types of gas that can be used in holiday homes and tourer caravans:
Propane: although the best option for colder weather with a boiling point of -42°C, propane provides slightly less heat per fuel use than the other suitable holiday home gas (butane.)
Butane: this tends to last longer than propane – around 12% longer per single litre, in fact. With a warmer boiling point than propane, Butane is often considered less suitable for holiday homes that offer year-round use, especially in the colder autumn or winter months in the UK.
The most popular suppliers that are currently in use across our Lyons Holiday Parks sites are Calor, Flogas, Gaslow, and Safefill. Ask at your park reception for more information on which gas bottles you can order, and our maintenance teams will also be more than happy to help with any advice.
The type of holiday home you have will impact which gas you should use, but it’s generally advised among holiday parks in the UK that offer year-round use to opt for propane to prevent any gas-tly and cold surprises over winter.
2. Does size matter?
Always. Common gas bottle sizes among holiday homeowners are the 47kg bottle. Generally, there’s room for two of these bottles outside any holiday home with a changeover valve (or T-adapter) which makes it easier to keep one in use and a spare, full gas bottle for the future.
3. How long does a gas bottle last in a holiday home?
Of course, this depends on how much you use your gas appliances such as the boiler, oven, or stove. Similarly to when you’re continuously living at your home address, some factors to consider are:
- The time of year – evidently, you’re going to be using the central heating or gas fire much more frequently in winter months
- The size of your holiday home – heating larger spaces is, as you can imagine, more gas-consuming
- Electricity – whether your holiday home uses electricity or not will have an impact on how much gas you use. Fortunately, most holiday homes in the UK today have electric hook-up options, which means you can run your fuel-guzzling appliances more often without using up too much gas
Just for your knowledge, using a 47kg bottle in a static caravan that uses gas for every appliance continuously will entail around 19 hours of use before it runs out. By this, we mean constantly using the gas hob, gas fire, hot water and anything else, so don’t panic – this is based on round-the-clock estimates!
4. How much does a gas bottle cost?
The average 47kg bottle costs around £60 per cylinder for current owners at Lyons Holiday Parks. You can find out more about gas providers, retailers, and prices by clicking on the Calor website.
5. How do I order/ buy a gas bottle for my holiday home?
Lyons Holiday Parks, like most holiday home sites in the UK, run a gas purchasing scheme to keep your safety and wellbeing at heart. For example, many of our sites use Calor gas as this expert can provide regular deliveries from local drivers. It’s common practice to order your gas bottles at park reception, pay for the individual gas bottles, and wait for them to be delivered to your individual plot.
Many new owners don’t realise that there are certain regulations and precautions to take when transporting Calor gas bottles, which is why it’s always best to leave it to your holiday park to order and deliver gas bottles.
6. How do I check how much gas is left in the cylinder?
It’s vital you keep an eye on how full your gas bottles are – to avoid any mid-cooking dramas or even unwanted cold showers! You can do this in a number of ways, which can include lifting or shaking the cylinder (if possible, and without injury!) where you’ll be able to hear how much content is in the bottle.
Another method people use is pouring hot water down the outside of the cylinder and detecting the gas level by seeing where the cylinder turns from hot to cold. Other affordable but less reliable methods include a self-adhesive strip, which also shows where the temperature changes, or adding an inline gauge.
The safest option, and the one we recommend, is asking a member of the maintenance or after-sales team on your park for advice or for a quick demonstration.
7. Tips for storing gas bottles
Here are some general guidelines to follow when using gas at your holiday home:
- Travelling – make life easier for yourself and order through your holiday park, to ensure safe transportation. If you must transport gas bottles yourself, ensure you store them upright and securely
- Always store them in a well-ventilated area and ensure they are always upright
- When you know you won’t be visiting your holiday home for a long period of time, turn off your gas bottles
- Make sure you switch off all gas-based appliances in your holiday home when you lock up to return home
- Regularly check the level of gas in the bottles to see if you need to order more –
- Also, check regularly for leaks and to ensure they remain in an upright position
- Check your holiday park’s policy about storing gas bottles, including how many you can have on your plot
- Ensure the gas is disconnected and switched off as part of your winter drain down procedure
8. Gas can be scary for some – here’s how to foolproof
Regularly completing and filing a gas safety certificate is a common clause on most holiday parks in the UK. This entails an annual gas check, performed by a qualified plumber, which then produces a certificate. At Lyons Holiday Parks, this is a vital document that proves to not only us but yourselves as owners, your families, and any guests you may have that the correct safety procedures are in place.
If your gas safety test fails, there’s no need to worry – this is why they’re performed! Most issues can be resolved or advised upon by our team of plumbers who would be more than happy to help.
9. What’s new in the gas bottle world?
We all know about the boom in domestic tourism that went hand in hand with the Coronavirus lockdown. With more people looking to holiday at home, there’s been an epic uptake in holiday home sales – and even tourer caravan purchasing. With the spike in ownership and units being used, it’s no surprise therefore that there’s a higher demand for gas bottles in the UK.
A spokesperson for Calor Gas told MailOnline: “To address this and improve cylinder availability for customers, Calor has prioritised cylinder exchange transactions for certain size cylinders, whereby cylinders are returned to Calor for filling and redistribution.”
In light of this, Calor Gas is encouraging any existing holiday home owners who have unused or empty cylinders to return them to the supplier where they can be refilled and reused. It’s all about recycling these days!