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Gas information sheet 29: Caravan cylinder compartment requirements

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LP Gas compartments or gas lockers are fully enclosed areas or a partitioned-off space primarily used for the storage of gas cylinders, a pressure regulator and other associated equipment.

Compartments and lockers need to be large enough to house the LP Gas cylinders and their associated equipment, allow for the safe removal and reconnection of cylinders and have the capability of securing the cylinders in place and have sufficient ventilation to prevent the buildup of LP Gas in case of a gas leak.

There are a number of constraints involved in the design and construction of LP Gas compartments and lockers on caravans. A summary is provided below; however, ESV encourages manufacturers and gasfitters to review of the requirements of AS/NZS 5601.2: 2013 LP Gas installations in caravans and boats for non-propulsive purposes to ensure their compartments comply.

Design

Compartments and lockers:

  • Need to house cylinders and their associated equipment.
  • Must have cylinders positioned so that they will not obstruct the compartment drain hole.
  • Must not have access from inside of the caravan to the gas cylinder except where both external installation of cylinders and penetration of the bodywork are structurally unacceptable.
  • Need to allow easy removal and replacement of cylinders and the operation of cylinder valves.

NOTE: Refer to AS/NZS 5601.2: 2013 Appendix H for the recommended location for the regulator to mitigate possible fouling of diaphragm by condensate.

Construction

Cylinder compartments and gas lockers shall be constructed of a material that is water and corrosion resistant.

Fastenings

Compartments must have the capability to fasten cylinders and their attachments in place to prevent their movement to keep them from being damaged or causing damage through unrestrained movement.

Gas vapour containment

Compartments and lockers must be sealed to prevent gas vapour from entering the caravan.

Access

The access door or opening shall be to be opened without the use of tools. Keys are not considered to be a tool.

Drainage and ventilation

Compartments and lockers shall have a drain in, or within, 25 mm of the base of the compartment with a minimum clear area of 500 mm2.

The drain outlet:

  1. Shall not face the direction of travel and shall face away from any opening into the caravan which is less than 1 m away unless that opening is more than 150 mm above drain outlet.
  2. Shall be at least 1.5 m from any source of ignition unless the ignition source is at least 500 mm above the drain outlet.

Alternatively, provide vents in the compartment door at both high and low levels. Each opening shall provide a minimum of 5000 mm2 of free area for every cylinder enclosed and shall meet the clearances specified in items 1 and 2 above. The bottom edge of the lower vent shall be within 25 mm of the base.

Electrical equipment storage

No electrical equipment, other than a non-sparking shut-off device, is allowed to be installed in the compartment or locker.

Signage

Cylinder compartments and gas lockers shall have durable sign on the outside indicating the storage of only LP Gas cylinders and their associated equipment.

Cylinder compartments are also required to carry a durable warning label complying with Figure 3.6 of AS/NZS 5601.2:2013 to indicate the presence of an LP Gas cylinder(s).

Combined storage compartment and gas locker

Where cylinder(s) are located in a combined external compartment, also used for general storage, the cylinder compartment shall be separated from the general storage area by a vertical divider sealed to the sides and floor of the compartment and extending to the compartment lid.

The cylinder compartment space shall contain the cylinder(s) and associated gas equipment only and be vented at the base.

Further information

For further information please phone the Gas Safety Technical Information Line on 1800 652 563.