When you drive a vehicle with a large built-in propane tank, carrying around small disposable propane cylinders for your barbecue grill somehow seems, well… wrong. We’ll show you exactly how we set up our RV to allow us to connect our grill to our on-board propane tank.

While small portable grills are often designed to use disposable propane canisters, we have a whole list of reasons we object to doing that.

First, there’s nothing much worse than thinking dinner’s ready, only to discover that the propane ran out right after you put your food on the grill. Since those little canisters are so… little, that seems just about as likely to happen as not.

Second, we’re full-timers, so space is at a premium. Removing disposable propane cylinders from the list of gear we need to keep on board saves space, and of course avoids running out of them, too (the best way to exacerbate objection #1 above: rummage around for a fresh canister to finish cooking dinner, then find that you already used the last one). Even though you could connect the barbecue to one of those larger 20 lb portable tanks typically used for grilling in a sticks & bricks house, those of course take up even more of that precious storage space. And… they run out, too.

Third, there are the dual evils of waste (the type that ends up in landfills) and waste (spending money unnecessarily). Those little canisters cost more and are bad for the planet.

Lastly, a prime directive of a do-it-yourselfer is to identify ways of improving the RVing experience through simple modifications. How great is it to be able to eliminate a redundancy, while improving functionality and reducing costs. So having the grill connected to the RV’s propane system is a triple win. A quadruple win if you do the modification yourself. 😉

Because we’ve received so many questions about this, we’ve added some additional details. Besides the video above, we’ve diagrammed out every part we used to modify our propane system to make grill connection (and disconnection) quick and easy. You can click on the two images below to view larger versions of the diagrams. We’ve also catalogued the entire parts list, in sequential order from propane tank to grill, with links to each piece on Amazon.

And if you want to download a copy of these images & the parts list, here’s a PDF document that contains both:

Downloadable PDF with Parts Diagrams and Shopping List

Click to view a larger version.

Click to view a larger version.

Click to view a larger version.

Click to view a larger version.

Of course your system may be a little different, but these details will hopefully make it easy for your to get your grill connected to your RV, and toss those canisters (figuratively, of course).

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