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Old 04-19-2007, 09:01 PM   #1
HarvInSTL
 
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I've been offered a 20# CO2 tank for $15.

The bad news is that it has been expired since 1996. I've found a company (Praxair) that will refill it for $22, but when I asked about them refilling my expired tank the guy danced around my question and never anwsered it.

He said that they would exchange my tank but there would be a hydrostatic charge fee of $18 for my old tank. Which I'm fine with, but when I asked him what would happen if my old tank failed the hydrostatic charge test he couldn't really anwser my question. (Ie. Would my only option at the point be to buy a new tank?)

So has anyone had any experience with exchanging an expired tank for another tank?

Do they perform the hydrostatic test while I stand there or a week later?

Any info is helpful! And thanks in advance!


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Old 04-19-2007, 09:25 PM   #2
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No answers for ya but look forward to someone's comment if there is any. I got a 10 and 20# tank that fits this same scenario...

I know the guys who fill my current tank wouldn't even bother looking to see if it's expired. I want them tested for peace of mind of course!



 
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Old 04-19-2007, 09:47 PM   #3
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The test is to show that the tank will safely hold pressure. It's a very conservative test, which is why it is good for 5 years. If a tank fails, you can't get a new sticker, which means no one is supposed to refill the tank, i.e. it's scrapped.

I do know that many people ignore the sticker, paint-ball fill places seem never to care. However, I have never gone to get mine retested, I really don't know how long the procedure is. I don't know either how long the expected lifespan of a tank is.

Give it a whirl, worst case scenario is you are out $18 and have to get a new tank. With scrap prices the way they are right now, you will probably be able to get most of that $18 back.
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Old 04-19-2007, 09:58 PM   #4
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None of the gas suppliers I have ever been to that exchange tanks have ever looked at any tanks that I was swapping out to check the certification. Just go in and play jimmy the dunce and say that some other place gave you the tank and you don't know anything about any certification. They will just give you a fresh tank.

I speak from experience. I have turned in many empty oxygen, acetylene, CO2, argon and nitrogen tanks that were all out of certification without any questions asked. This is only true if you are swapping. If you want yours filled they will check the certification.
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Old 04-19-2007, 10:10 PM   #5
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Maybe I need to find a swap place like John mentioned in town. The place I go for my other non-expired tank they just fill it up as I wait.

I googled and found a company that certifies tanks locally and just gave them a call. $25 to hydo test a 10# tank and then $1 a lb to refill. Still a good deal since the tank was free for me, unless it doesn't pass then I'd assume I just ate the $35.

http://www.unitedfire.net/UnitedFire/faqs.html

 
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Old 04-19-2007, 10:58 PM   #6
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If it fails the test then it's dangerous anyway. Unless it's dented or has been shot with a 22 or the valve looks like it was used as a hammer, then you have a 98% chance it will pass the test.

$15 for tank and $18 for test is still pretty cheap for a 20lb tank.
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Old 04-20-2007, 01:18 AM   #7
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I just brought three 5 lb tanks in for filling and one was so old but they had no problem exchanging it with no charge. The refils cost $16.50 is that allot and what should my high pressure gauge read my is like 800 psi. I checked all of them and they all read the same

 
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Old 04-20-2007, 01:35 AM   #8
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I started a thread to track CO2 costs. Since some of you filled recently or are about to, we can get some data.
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=27863
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Old 04-20-2007, 05:55 AM   #9
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Well it sounds like I should take a chance. I know that $15 for a 20# tank is freakin' steal so I'm going to buy it this weekend and just walk into Praxair and tell them I need an exchange.

Worst case scenario I take it to another place.

Thanks again and everyone drink a homebrew this weekend, cause hopefully next week I'll have a filled 20# tank for less than $40



Damn it this hobby is addicting. I brewed my first two batchs last friday and I already have bought two more 6.5gl carboy's, 2 5gl carboys, to go along with the two ale pails I bought last week.

Not to mention the 4lbs of hops that came today along with a free freezer from the wifes friend.

Now all I need is a cheap thermostat temp controller, some decently cheap cornies, facuets,shanks and a regulator!

And to top it off, I asked her what my brewery name should be and she looked at me with a straight face and said "Well you do like T&A, so how about T&A Brewing?"

Thanks again for the insight guys/gals!
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Old 04-20-2007, 08:05 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarvInSTL
And to top it off, I asked her what my brewery name should be and she looked at me with a straight face and said "Well you do like T&A, so how about T&A Brewing?"

Tomatoes and Apples Brewing? Well.. to each their own...

Even if Praxair re-certs your tank, which they probably should, you'll only be out a few more bucks. One thing I like about praxair is you can start an account via credit card, and use it at any praxair in North America.


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