DIY Network

How To Prepare for a Propane Tank Installation

A propane tank is an important element of an outdoor kitchen. A professional should do the installing, but, here's what to expect during the installation.

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  • Time

    Under Half Day

  • Price Range

    $5,000 - $10,000

  • Difficulty



Step 1: Hire a Professional

Following is a summary of the major steps in the propane tank installation, but this job is not something that even the experienced DIYer should undertake alone. In other words, this is one case where you should not do it yourself. Hire a licensed professional for this job.

Step 2: Dig the Hole

Decide where the propane tank will be buried, and use a tape measure to determine how much copper tubing will be needed to carry the propane to each appliance. Using a backhoe, the professional will dig a hole no less than 16-feet wide and five feet deep to house the 1000-gallon propane tank.

Step 3: Fill the Hole

Before putting the propane tank in the ground, the professional will fill the hole with 5 to 6 inches of sand. (Sand helps keep water away from the tank and prevents rusting). Then, he or she will put the propane tank in the ground with a truck-mounted crane (Images 1 and 2).

Step 4: Establish Routes to Other Appliances

After dropping the tank in the ground, the professional will place bags of magnesium around the tank to gather rust. He or she will then dig trenches from the propane tank to each separate appliance (Images 1 and 2). Lay copper tubing in each trench to carry propane to the appliances (Image 3). The 1000-gallon propane tank will be filled with 800 gallons of liquid propane. 20 percent of the tank is left empty for expansion. Cover the tank with sand, then top with dirt and level the ground.