Most campers use liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), for cooking and heating, in the form of butane or propane. Both gases are heavier than air, so any leak leads the gas to sink to the floor. It is therefore essential that the built-in floor vents in caravans and motorhomes are not obstructed, either intentionally or otherwise, in order to prevent any leaked gas building up to a dangerous level.
Butane is a more efficient heat producer in summer conditions, but becomes less so as the temperature drops. Propane changes into gas at much lower temperatures, so it can be used all year round.
Traditionally butane and propane bottles required different regulators. Butane (28mbar) must not be used with a propane regulator (37mbar) nor vice versa. However, caravans and motorhomes built from 2004 onwards are supplied with a 30mbar regulator fitted to the bulkhead in the gas locker, for both types of gas. The gas-burning equipment is also designed to suit the new pressure, so pre-2004 outfits must not be retrofitted with the new regulator.
Calor Gas and Supergas are not available in mainland Europe, so either carry sufficient gas to last for the duration of your stay or use Campingaz®, which is usually readily available. Please be aware of any restrictions applying to the carriage of gas on ferries and especially on Eurotunnel.
Calor Gas in the Republic of Ireland is not interchangeable with Calor Gas UK, needing different bottles and regulators. It is best to take sufficient supplies with you.
When transporting and storing LPG the cylinders must remain upright, since there is always a small chance that the valve on the top of the cylinder could leak.