propane vs butane in confined area

Discussion in 'General Homesteading & Building' started by bunkerbob, May 9, 2010.

  1. bunkerbob

    bunkerbob Supporting Member

    I have been researching the difference between propane and butane for use in a confined space such as a shelter. What Is the Difference Between Propane and Butane? |
    As you can learn from the article, butane is not classified as a toxic gas, thus can be stored indoors. It burns very cleanly and as suggested, is used by chefs, catering services and for indoor cooking.
    I use a small one burner butane stove just for that reason. The stove is designed to only connect the small tank when ready to use for cooking, thus eliminating another leak source from additional hoses or fittings.
    It is of course utmost to have a good powered air source, be it electric or hand-powered, to circulate and exhaust the air in a shelter due to the stove using some of the available O2 in the air for ignition.
    I plan on adding a small exhaust in-line fan identical to the one used in the intake side of the system, this will have a vent above the stove and one in the bathroom, for obvious odoriferous reasons.
    The MRE meals that are stored in the shelter do have their own heat pacs, but do require additional water to work. The stove thus, should help in the conservation of water.

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  2. jungatheart

    jungatheart Beginner's Mind

    Only difference I've heard between the two is that Butane will freeze and propane will not.

  3. sewserious

    sewserious Well-Known Member

    There is no reason you can't use propane indoors as long as you have proper ventilation. That is the KEY! Proper ventiliation. Folks use keronsene heaters indoors, they come with the same warning, use proper ventilation. As long as you have some sort of a fresh air source.....

    I don't know about anyone else, but I live in a house built in the early 70s that, while well-insulated, is not considered "air-tight". No house wrap, the outlets on the outside walls aren't "insulated", it has the original windows and storm windows/screens. This house, while not overly hard to heat'cool, has a far amount of fresh-air exchange naturally due to it not being a "tight" house. When using kerosene or propane inside, we use it in the kitchen (during ice storms with no power), and open the window over the sink (which is sheltered from the wind, etc by a covered porch) just a smidgen. Natural fresh-air infiltrates whenever a door to the outside is opened also. When you have 1800 square feet of living space, it would take a long time to use up all the oxygen.

    I think there is too much worry about using such items indoors because everything has warning labels on it for the lowest common denomintor of brains/guarding against lawsuits. Our camping neighbor this weekend said it best, "All the *******es ruin it for the ones of us who have common sense!"
  4. bunkerbob

    bunkerbob Supporting Member

    You are correct about butane and freezing weather, I don't plan on that in the shelter, steady 60 degress.