Propane tank distance rules

For safety reasons propane tanks have to be located at a certain distance from nearby buildings or structures such as playgrounds, parking lots, driveways, property lines or other propane tanks. When getting quotes from different propane companies to have a tank installed that you have decided to either buy or rent, you could ask what distance rules apply.

National and local propane tank distance rules

General standards for propane tank distance rules are determined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (US Department of Labor) and the National Fire Protection Association. Local standards may impose stricter distance rules so it is recommended that you check with your local building department to establish what rules are applicable in your area.

Tank capacity (gallons)

Minimum distance (feet)

From tank to building

Between tanks

Underground

Aboveground

Under 125

10

0

0

125-250

10

10

0

251-500

10

10

3

501-2,000

25

25

3

Minimum distance requirements between tanks and between tanks and nearby buildings
Source: Table H23, Standard 1910.110, OSHA

Aboveground tank distance rules

Source: NFPA

Underground tank distance rules

Source: NFPA

Point of transfer distance rules

The NFPA defines the point of transfer as “the location where connections and disconnections are made or where LP-Gas is vented to the atmosphere in the course of transfer operations”. Filling a tank releases propane into the atmosphere (between the tank fill valve and the hose end connection). Therefore, the NFPA has established the following rules for points of transfer:

Between the point of transfer and:

Distance

Buildings with fire-resistive walls

10 ft

Buildings with other than fire-resistive walls

25 ft

Property line that can be built upon

25 ft

Places of public assembly

50 ft

Driveways

5 ft

 

Source: NFPA 58