Gaslow or Calor for Europe???

TheDoris

#1
Hi
I am converting a VW Transporter T4 panel van for a year long trip around Europe. Trying to decide on a solution for gas, it's only going to be used for a 2 ring hob. Been looking at Gaslow kit, or just take calor and buy replacement bottles and regulators when needed.....??? Will only be able to carry a 12kg bottle at any one time.
Can anyone help me with how long a calor bottle will last when only using a hob? Does anyone have Gaslow and what are your opinions?

Help much appreciated!
 
#2
I would expect a 12kg bottle to last a few months powering a hob, obviously depenant on time. I have just fitted a gasit refillable 11kg bottle to mine, £145 including bottle, fill adaptor, and euro adaptors, £17 to fill in the UK, no worries over ever being without gas in europe, just done 4 days including cooking, heating water and using space heating and the contents gauge has hardly moved.
 

John H

Full Member
#3
Hi
I am converting a VW Transporter T4 panel van for a year long trip around Europe. Trying to decide on a solution for gas, it's only going to be used for a 2 ring hob. Been looking at Gaslow kit, or just take calor and buy replacement bottles and regulators when needed.....??? Will only be able to carry a 12kg bottle at any one time.
Can anyone help me with how long a calor bottle will last when only using a hob? Does anyone have Gaslow and what are your opinions?

Help much appreciated!
Sound of hornets nest being opened!!!!
You will get lots of conflicting advice on this one but we have Gaslow because it is not only cheaper than Calor but it can be refilled all over Europe (although in Spain there are relatively few sites and you may have to travel a long way to re-fill). Legally, the Calor cylinder is not yours - it is owned by the company and your contract states that you can only exchange with them - and this is not possible in Europe. Some people are happy re-filling cylinders; others believe it is potentially unsafe as well as breaking your agreement with Calor (and therefore invalidating your insurance in the event of disaster). Gaslow (and similar systems) may be initially expensive but if you use your motorhome as much as we do (virtually full-time) then it soon pays for itself (less than 18 months in our case).
 

n brown

Full Member
#4
if you can afford it get the gaslow sorted,if not get a couple camping gaz cylinders and a regulator and sort things out as you go along.
 

Mastodon

#5
Gaslow and a bunch of adaptors. We carry either a Calor or Camping Gaz tank as a reserve depending which country we're in. Great thing about Gaslow is the ability to top up at will so the chances of runing out are minimal. Same reason we have a SOG - you can empty anytime and anywhere without wasting chemicals.
 

stevebeercock

#6
What is a SOG?

What is a SOG?
 

shortcircuit

#7
Very simply it an extractor fan that is plumbed into the loo. When you open up the shutter in the loo the fan starts and extracts the odours. No need for any chemicals. The extractor fan is a 12v computer cooling fan complete with housing and adapters, switch for the loo. Great device and simple to fit and I would not be without now as no horrible chemical smells.
 

baloothebear

#8
We fitted a Gaslow. Mke sure that you get the various different adaptors as well as the Europeans use different type connectors to the UK.

There are other companies who make refillable cylinders as well

If you are doing a system, make sure that you fit an external filler for the cylinders. Some French petrol stations will stop you refilling. I think that it was the Total chain that banned filling last year.

So don't fill up with LPG and fuel at the same time :)
 

Northerner

#10
Think very carefully about a SOG. I wouldn't have one at any price. First of all I cannot understand the comment about 'horrible chemical toilet-fluid smells'. Mine smiles very nice thank you. That's the whole point of the stuff!

Standing near someone emptying a cassette that has no toilet fluid to mask what really are disgusting smells is not to be recommended and parking next to a SOG equipped 'van on an aire can result in foul smells being pumped in your direction whenever the lavatory is used.

Then there's the cost. SOG units need a new filter every year. These cost more than a 5 litre container of very sweet-smelling own-brand toilet fluid that I buy from my local dealer. The SOG unit is about £100 I believe which, amortised even over ten years is a another tenner a year. Then there's the battery drain from the fan and the risk of the fan failing.

My five litre bottle of fluid £10) gives me about fifty nights, or over seven weeks of camping. I can understand those who believe that SOGs have an environmental advantage but, as long as you dispose of your waste in the correct place that should not be a problem.

I appreciate that there are those who like SOGs and will always prefer them, but not everyone shares the same view and there are good reasons why we don't.

As for Gas! I love my Gaslow set up. If you stick to one large Calor cylinder, what do you do when it runs out half way through cooking dinner? With Gaslow you can top up regularly when you pass a filling station that sells LPG. Even in Spain you can plan as there are books available that tell you where the filling points are.
 
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fishy & Nina

#11
We have Gaslow and wouldn't change it now.

We bought it when we planned a long trip into Scandinavia - very easy!

We have also moved between vans with no problems.

Essentially - very versatile; easy to use; cheaper than Calor (after the initial urchase cost); no need for lots of different regulators / cylinders when abroad - just purchase the european fillers with the Gaslow kit.

good luck
 

John H

Full Member
#12
Hi again

nbrown and Mastodon suggested using camping gaz - and it is certainly widely available across Europe but I would add that it is also the most expensive way of buying gas (by some considerable distance!) so if you go down that route, then I would advise using camping gaz only as a back-up.
 
#13
A 12kg Gas bottle is quite big to fit into a T4 i'd of thought
 
#14
Hi again

nbrown and Mastodon suggested using camping gaz - and it is certainly widely available across Europe but I would add that it is also the most expensive way of buying gas (by some considerable distance!) so if you go down that route, then I would advise using camping gaz only as a back-up.
that's what i meant to say.i put a t joint on my gas pipe and have a calor and a camping gaz regulator,i then try to carry enough calor to cover the trip but keep one large c/gaz cylinder as back up.
 

groyne

Full Member
#15
I've just fitted the 6kg Gas-it bottle, less than £9 to fill up, and after several days usage I recon a full bottle will last me for our 3 week tour of France in the summer. I know I won't make the cost of the system back, approximatley £150, on the life of this van (Mk2 already on the drawing board :scared:). When I sell this van I'll do as someone suggested in another thread, just leave the filler cap and let the new owner decide what system they want.
 

Mastodon

#16
Hi again

nbrown and Mastodon suggested using camping gaz - and it is certainly widely available across Europe but I would add that it is also the most expensive way of buying gas (by some considerable distance!) so if you go down that route, then I would advise using camping gaz only as a back-up.
We run off the Gaslow cylinder and use the other as a backup in case sh*t happens... Yes it's expensive but you can remove it from the van and exchange it almost anywhere.
 

barryd

Full Member
#17
For a year trip maybe Gaslow would be the way to go. However do bear in mind that depending where you are going LPG stations are not available all over Europe. We have not had a problem filling ours in the likes of Germany, France, Italy etc but if your heading east or indeed even to Spain they can be thin on the ground I am told. Maybe have a back up plan and a secondary "foreign" bottle if that is possible. Just out of interest, how are you going to heat the van?

We have gaslow and love it but its used all the time for heating, water heating and cooking including an oven so an 11KG bottle may only last a week or so in Winter and just about a month in summer.
 

channa

Full Member
#18
I personally would buy a French bottle and regulator whilst in france...25 euros will do it from the brico
Then replacement bottles. Are widely available.

As my back up, I carry a two burner Coleman that runs off lead free petrol.

Leave the calor at home , as others have saiid hard to get them refilled.

Gaslow etc is the way to go if you are comfortable with the initial investment

Channa
 

barryd

Full Member
#19
I personally would buy a French bottle and regulator whilst in france...25 euros will do it from the brico
Then replacement bottles. Are widely available.

As my back up, I carry a two burner Coleman that runs off lead free petrol.

Leave the calor at home , as others have saiid hard to get them refilled.

Gaslow etc is the way to go if you are comfortable with the initial investment

Channa
Hi Channa

Just out of interest can the French bottle be changed all over Europe?

We currently have 1 x 11KG Gaslow and 1 x 6KG Calor as a backup. I can easily change the regulator over from one to the other but 99% of the time just use the Gaslow and hardly ever have to use the Calor. What I am think is if we go away to countries where LPG stations are not available, is there a common standard of exchangable bottle we can get to replace the Calor and swap over from the Gaslow should we need to or will this involve having a differnet regulator fitted?
 

channa

Full Member
#20
Tbh Barry first extended trip I bought an antargas calypso and ended up carrying a empty calor around Europe lol.

Second trip, left the valor here and just used the calypso..and changed as and when with the Coleman as back up.

You actually have the best arrangement, my post really was offering the op an alternative solution if they were reluctant to make the investment.

Common regulator fittings is a little hit and miss ...eg French butane reg will work on a dutch propane...but then the regulator pressures are technically wrong .

I do believe that antargas standard bottles are easy to change in Spain.

For me, I knew I would be predominantly in France, hence the French set up
Channa
 

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