2022 National LPG Study

2022 National LPG Study

  • Report on the 2022 NCWM-NIST National Survey on 20 lb LPG (Propane) Cylinders: Download Here
  • January 2023 NCWM Petition to the U.S. Department of Transportation: Download Here

In 2022, NCWM and NIST conducted a National Survey on 20 LB Cylinders of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG). Approximately 150 weights and measures officials in 20 states collected data during February, March, and April.

The survey had three phases:

1. Determine the accuracy of stamped tare weights

2. Collect data at direct sale refilling stations regarding the method of sale, price posting practices, and filling procedures.

3. Determine net weight compliance of 20 lb cylinders at exchange locations and assess the amount of product consumers leave behind when exchanging.

One motivation for this study was the U.S. Department of Transportation’s expansion of the tolerances for the accuracy of stamped tare weights on cylinders, to take effect in December 2022. The NCWM standards for weights and measures agencies specify a plus and minus 0.5 % tolerance on tare weight for 20 lb cylinders. The DOT will implement the new -3% and +1% tolerance. We believe the DOT was unaware of the NCWM standards that inspectors have been able to maintain. We used the survey data to demonstrate the economic impact on consumers and industry from weight inaccuracies. We petitioned the DOT in January 2023 to repeal the new rule on tolerances.

The data will show the impact of underfills and overfills on consumers and the industry. That may prompt the LPG industry to develop better quantity control practices, protecting them from losses and ensuring equity for consumers and competing businesses.