For my last two brew sessions, my propane burner flame seemed very low. It would take nearly two hours to boil my 6.5 gallons of water. I swapped propane tanks and fiddled with the regulator and nothing seemed to work.
So yesterday, I decide to brew and I turn on the burner. It was roaring! I didn't time it, but I swear it was less than thirty minutes to bring it to a boil. My father-in-law was going to brew with me that day, but he hadn't arrived. Seeing how I hadn't done anything but boil the water, I decided to shut off the burner and wait for him to arrive.
After he arrives, we go to the garage and we start the burner. The flame was very weak! What the heck! Just an hour before it was going to town and now this? So I replayed in my mind what I did when I turned on the burner. Sure enough, the first time I had turned the regulator valve off before I turned the the valve on the propane tank. I shut off the propane, turned off the regulator, and then re-opened the propane valve. I then turned the regulator to on and lit the flame. Whoosh!!! It was back to where it was earlier in the day.
This was an easy fix and I was able to repeat later in the day. All I can figure is that when the regulator was left in the on position, the gas flow is restricted for safety. I only wish I had figured this out earlier. I could have saved so much time during my previous brew sessions.