Gas fitting Choice for van life

Hi Guys,

Im a bout to start my van project and have watched many videos from the UK and US regards to Underslung LPG Tank Kit for Motorhomes, does anyone know if this is available in Australia at all and if anyone has done it and what are the feedback. for what I understood it is the same system to run the car on gas but used for the hot water and cooking and it is mounted under the car and can be filled in any petrol station, I guess it is a very good choice over cutting the van and only carrying a 4kg bottle. Thanks in advanced

Greetings & Welcome!

I’m in the USA, and the most important thing for me is safety first, followed by availability and price. LPG (Propane) severely flunks on both safety and price for me. For me, kerosene is the clear winner for safety & price, but availability can sometimes be difficult. Luckily both my heater and my cooker will also run on diesel which is available almost everywhere.

Both my heater & cooker(s) are wick based, which means no pressurized fuel needed. They are also portable, so they can be used indoors or outdoors without duplication. When campfires are banned, we can still gather around my kerosene heater in the evening.

I’d check for availability in your area. Propane is definitely the most dangerous, but it is still popular because big oil has dumped a ton of money into making it popular. Prior to big oil getting behind propane, it was banned on boats due to safety reasons. Big oil BOUGHT it’s approval. Personally, I’ve lost too many friends due to propane leaks, fires, explosions, and carbon monoxide poisoning caused by propane. Today, there are carbon monoxide detectors, before that, propane almost killed me too. Today I play it safer by avoiding propane.

I spent last winter in a cold place. My kerosene cost was about $5 per week, and my van was totally comfy. My neighbor was freezing, and paying $200+ per week for propane heat. He’d come to my place to get warmed up. Unlike the propane heaters that require power, my kerosene heater doesn’t require any power either. Relying on power in extreme conditions is a very poor choice. Fuel, you can count on, power not so much. Even a generator is mechanical, plus electrical, which means they can break down. My stuff has a wick and fuel, so not much to malfunction. I do carry spare wicks. So as long as I have fuel, I can heat, cook, and have lights. I carry 2x 7 gallon jugs of fuel, which is enough to last me for many months. This provides me with peace of mind. I try to plan for the worst possible scenario, then everything else is easier. I also carry at least a months worth of long shelf life, no refrigeration needed food with me at all times. It’s not my preferred food, but I won’t go hungry.


"Smiles are contagious, pass them on!" ~ Van_Dweller


Thanks for your input, definitely LPG is the most popular and widely used here in australia and I did not find many cases of dangers carrying and using and Australia is huge with caravan, van life, Yes you have. point but surely as long as installed by a certified fitter it will be safe, after all living in a Van any way is not the safest :slight_smile: I will not busing propane for heating the van that’s for sure will be cooking and hot water only , but I’m considering invest and getting a water and air heater on a diesel , but to have a stove and oven on diesel here its almost $10000 which is not in anyones van life budge I guess . but anyway I appreciate your time and tips


Actually, kerosene/diesel wick type stoves are cheaper than similar propane models. Here’s a link to one on ebay:

I use 2. A folding stove top camping oven is also cheap. For spare wicks, I went to the dollar store and bought a string mop, so I got a lifetime supply of spare wicks for $1. They’re portable, so no installation is required.

Popular isn’t always the best choice. Most people only camp for a few days or a week. Full timing is a whole different ballgame.


"Smiles are contagious, pass them on!" ~ Van_Dweller

Wallas XC Duo is less than two thousand new from store, it is originally designed for boats but I’ve seen them installed in small campers recently. If you can source older Wallas cooktop from a boat, some of them can be fitted with a fan cover so they will work as a heater like this new one.

I’ll bet installation would be less than 8k, even at the most expensive shop :smiley:

Since UK guys are big on small campers, they are marketing it directly to campers too:


I think I’ll stick with ~$25 portable solution. I have under $1500 in my entire rig, van included, and it is more comfortable, convenient, and reliable than 99% of what’s out there.

Everything that is truly important can be done on even the smallest budget, and KISS (Keep It Stupidly Simple) can be a blessing in so many ways.

People say I make this lifestyle look easy. It’s not me, it’s the equipment I choose that makes it easy.


"Never gamble more than you can afford to lose." ~ Dare2Dream