How Long Will a 20 LB Propane Tank Run a 5-Burner Stove Oven?

With the summer grilling season in full swing, many homeowners want to know how long they can continue cooking on their outdoor propane cooktops. As the temperatures rise, keep a propane tank filled with enough fuel to feed your outdoor cooking fire for the entire summer. But how long will a 20lb propane tank run a 5-burner stove oven?

To determine how long a 20 LB Propane tank will run a 5-burner stove oven, you need to consider two things. Firstly, how many BTUs are in your propane tank? Secondly, what is the efficiency of your 20 LB propane tank? With these two, you can determine how long your tank will run with a 5-burner stove oven.

Calculating It on Average

Averagely, a 20 LB propane tank will run for 18-20 hours under normal conditions and with 100% efficiency. That means a 5-burner stove will run for 4 hours at least. This could be subject to other conditions like usage and temperature. These can also affect its longevity. Using the AFUE rating of heaters, you can calculate your propane tank’s efficiency. The following denotes how long a 20LB tank at 50,000BTU will last for different efficiency rates, respectively:

  • Burning Efficiency: 100%, 95%, 90%, 85%, 80%, 75%
  • Burning Hours: 8.41 hours, 7.99 hours, 7.57 hours, 7.15 hours, 6.73 hours, 6.31 hours. 

Other Factors That Determine How Long a Propane Tank Stove Will Last

1. How Many BTUs Are in the Tank

The amount of propane you need to run your oven depends on the BTUs (British Thermal Units) of your oven, which is the amount of energy needed to heat one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. The higher the BTUs, the more energy it takes for the same temperature rise.

The more BTUs, the more heat it will generate. This means that if you have an extremely large oven, you may need to get a larger tank than 20 lbs. If you have an extremely small oven, however, you may be able to get away with using less gas per hour.

2. The Efficiency of the Propane Tank

The efficiency of a propane tank is how much fuel it can hold and how many BTUs it can produce from that fuel. Their cubic feet capacity rates propane tanks, so if you know how big your tank is in cubic feet, you can calculate how much fuel it holds and how many BTUs it produces at once. Some tanks are more efficient than others at turning energy into heat

A high-quality tank should be able to convert about 85% of its energy into heat, while some cheaper models might only convert 60%. So if two people use the same sized oven and one used an 85% efficient propane tank and the other used a 60% efficient propane tank, they might both not get the same amount of hours out of their tanks (assuming they used them at the same rate).

3. The size of your tank

The first thing to consider when calculating how long a 20 lb propane tank will run is the size of your tank. Larger tanks provide more fuel, which means you don’t have to refill as often. A 20 lb tank will last about 4-5 hours on average if you’re using 5 burners at once (like an oven). The more burners in use, the faster your tank will drain.

4. The number of burners being used

If you have 6 burners turned on full blast, then you will use more propane and, therefore, have less time before needing to refill your tank. If only 5 are turned on full blast, then you will use less propane and, therefore, have more time before needing to refill your tank.

5. Your cooking habit

The longevity of your propane tank depends on how often you use the stove and what temperature settings you use (low, medium, or high). If you cook for an hour every day, it will take about three weeks for the tank to run out. If you cook for 30 minutes every day, it will take about one month for the tank to run out. If you only use your oven once a week, then it will last almost two months before it runs out of fuel. 

If you’re like most people and tend to cook during peak hours (dinner time), then your propane usage will increase significantly during those times as well. If you plan on using your stove more than once per day, then make sure that there’s enough gas in your tank before each use so that it doesn’t run out halfway through cooking dinner for everyone.

6. Propane Tank Size

The first thing to consider is the size of your propane tank. The bigger the tank, the longer it will last. As a general rule of thumb, 20 lb tanks will run an average-sized home stove for about 4 hours at max heat. If you’re trying to conserve energy, then try limiting yourself to 3 hours of use at high heat per day.

Some Key Propane Usage Longevity Stats

  • Depending on how often it is used, an average home uses up to 500-1200 gallons of propane in a year.
  • In a year, it costs a home about 200-300 gallons of propane to use hot water.
  • 1250 gallons of propane tanks are exhausted annually for cooking and heating by a family. 

Tips to Make a Propane Tank Run for Long

There are several tips that you can follow to ensure that you use your filled propane tank for as long as possible. Here are some tips on how to make a propane tank run for longer:

1. Use a larger tank if possible

A larger tank will hold more propane, which means that it will last longer before needing to be refilled. The larger the tank, the less often you will have to refill it. A 20 lb. tank will last approximately 3 months, whereas a 100 lb. tank will last about 6 months without needing to be refilled again.

2. Find a reputable company

You may think that any company will do this when it comes to refilling your propane tank; however, this isn’t always true. Some companies may be more reputable than others and offer better service for their customers than others do, so make sure you find one that does good work before signing up with them.

3. Monitor your refill cycles

Once you know how much propane you’ll need each month, make sure that you monitor how often you refill your tank so that it doesn’t run out too soon. If possible, try filling up when there are coupons or discounts available so that it won’t cost as much money or kill trees by printing coupons from home.

4. Do not overfill your tank with propane.

Overfilling your propane tank can cause leaks and damage the seal on top of the container. This can lead to gas leakage, which makes it unsafe and dangerous for your family members, who may be using this type of fuel source in their homes or businesses every day.

Final Note

Now that you know how long a 20 LB Propane Tank will run your 5 Burner Stove Oven, you can accurately plan your outdoor cookouts and tailgating parties to maximize the use of the tank.


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