ARTESIA, CALIFORNIA -- I bought a Blue Rhino propane tank from a Walgreens near me. When I hooked up the tank to my propane grill I heard gas escaping from the valve. I looked at the valve, and the o-ring inside the tank was bad. You could see large cracks where a smooth and rubbery o-ring should be. Blue Rhino supposedly tests all their tanks for leaks, but this is proof that they, in fact, do not. This tank shouldn't have even passed a visual inspection of the valve.
This incident completely ruin my 4th of July BBQ plans. I would tell anyone who buys a Blue Rhino tank to double check the valve before they leave the store, but this is made more difficult by the fact that there is a cover over that part of the valve which indicates that it is a new tank. I am including photos to show the difference between a good and a bad o-ring.
Maybe it is just me, but it seems like the tanks I get when I swap out an empty for a new tank aren't as full as they used to be. I used to get one tank and it would last through the summer; I am now on my third tank of the summer. My grilling habits haven't changed and my grill doesn't have any leaks. The service is convenient, but I am not sure the tanks are being filled to their full potential. Not really a true complaint; more like an aggravation.