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Where can I buy a co2 tank locally?

Discussion in 'Home Bar' started by jlordi12, Oct 10, 2012.

  1. Does Target or Walmart or any store like that sell tanks that can be used for kegging purposes?
  2. Superdad

    Superdad Aficionado (105) Sep 1, 2012

    No , you have to go to a place that sells compressed gas . Also , make sure when you purchase your CO2 that its "Food Grade " . Ive been told that you really shouldnt use the same CO2 that is used for paintball as some of it is lubricated
  3. That's a bummer. Thanks
  4. JoRado

    JoRado Savant (275) Minnesota Oct 26, 2010

    You could always check craigslist in your area if you can't get one at a local home brewing store. Typically someone on craigslist will have one that they don't use anymore.
  5. I've explored this option, as well. So far they don't seem like a huge discount over buying new, I'll keep scanning it periodically .
  6. JoRado

    JoRado Savant (275) Minnesota Oct 26, 2010

    What size and price were you looking for?
  7. probably 5 or 10 lb. I just found out I can buy them at the LHBS, but I'm sure it will be for a premium. They also run an exchange program which is cool. With that I'd probably want to go used.
  8. canoale

    canoale Aficionado (175) Ohio Apr 9, 2010

    Beverage element ( online ) has some good deals . Their refurbished ones are excellent
  9. cubbyswans

    cubbyswans Savant (365) Missouri Jun 10, 2008

    I'm not sure who told you this, but there seems to be more myth and "someone told me" BS regarding CO2 floating around than anything. I spent hours 'researching' (googling) food grade co2 and come up with more bullshit than anything. Everything from "there's no such thing as food grade co2, it's the container" to lubricated co2...... But not one of these things regarding food grade co2 comes from any credible source. It's all from internet forums. Someone seemed to think that it's the co2 cartridges that you would use in a BB gun (or a paintball gun) that are lubricated. I find this last piece regarding lubricated co2 to be plausible.

    The best I could come up with is looking at the purity of the co2 that the gas sources are selling. Looking at their websites and you see the lowest purity of co2 you can buy is something like 99.97 percent pure, and above that there's medical grade which is 99.99999 or whatever pure. Neither are lubricated. The 100lb tanks that the paintball places are carrying is the same co2 that the co2 source will put in your 5lb tank unless you want to pay through the nose for the medical grade stuff. They are not lubricating anything in these tanks and you certainly don't need medical grade co2. I've been buying co2 from the paintball store for 6 years and I watch them fill it from 100lb tanks that come directly from the co2 gas suppliers.
    IceAce likes this.
  10. Keezer54

    Keezer54 Aspirant (40) Michigan Jul 30, 2011

    i was waiting for someone to jump on that myth,my supplier is a fire extingusher shop .they do paintball supplies & fill Co2 for a large area of the state for bars & restraunts.I don't think Micky D's would allow unsafe Co2 in their sodas.Area Beer distributor's get theirs here too
    cubbyswans likes this.
  11. IceAce

    IceAce Advocate (560) California Jan 8, 2004

  12. seanoj

    seanoj Aspirant (40) California Jun 16, 2010

    I would look for Airgas or similar business. Often they have exchange programs for CO2 tanks. You bring in an empty and walk out with a full on sitting on the shelf. Perhaps you can buy your way into the exchange program cheaper than buying a new tank and getting it refilled. This way you don't have to worry about your tank expiring too.

    Be sure to factor in the cost of refills (probably a lot cheaper at a place like Airgas than your LHBS).
  13. Thanks for all the good information
  14. Samantha55

    Samantha55 Aspirant (35) Florida Oct 12, 2012

    I saw some on Craigslist here locally, even one in a newspaper.
  15. cubbyswans

    cubbyswans Savant (365) Missouri Jun 10, 2008

    yeah usually these places will charge you extra on the first visit as a 'deposit' on the tank. From then on out you just pay for the refill or more likely a swap. So unless you want to buy your own tank for a reason, like having a cheap place to go to fill, it's not really necessary.
  16. You'll need to buy the tank, but check out your local fire supply store for cheap refills.

    Lots of places to buy empty tanks online - a new 5 lb tank might run you $60 shipped. (It's not that big/heavy so shipping isn't much) I can't imagine saving that much on a used tank to make it worthwhile, unless you really want a huge one.
  17. I frequently see 20# tanks on Craigslist for around $25 versus maybe four times that for a new tank + shipping. I'd say that's a significant savings, partularly since you want the flexibility of swapping the tank from time to time.
  18. einhorn

    einhorn Savant (345) California Nov 3, 2005

    Remember that if you buy a tank, it retains it's resale value. You can sell it for what you paid for it.
  19. I called the local airgas place and they had never heard of buying your way in. I'm likely going to have to spring for a new one, the used ones are going for the same price around the Boston area.
  20. That's only true for a used tank. A new tank's price will drop, perhaps by half, the day it transitions to 'used'. After that, the price is determined by the number of dents. Rust can be cleaned and painted over. These tanks never really wear out, so a ten year old tank is just as good as one that is still in its original packaging.
  21. Yeah, like I said, the savings might be worthwhile on a huge one. Not on a 5 pounder though, where they practically resell for what they cost new.
  22. robinsmv

    robinsmv Initiate (0) Florida Jun 24, 2010

    Usually the gases with lubricants in them are propane with a small amount of silicone added in. It is called green gas and is primarily used by the airsoft community to both fire and lubricate a gas powered airsoft gun.
  23. Why not just buy a tank from Amazon, Kegworks or some place similar?
  24. It is certainly an option but if I could avoid shipping and lag time that would be better .
  25. I guess we have different opinions on what a 'huge' tank is. A 20# tank is about the size of a corny keg - not huge, IMO. Unless you're really cramped for space, I'm not sure why anybody would opt for a 5# tank. The money you save on a refill will pay for the tank after only a few fills ($4/lb for a 5 lb refill versus $1.25/lb for a 20 lb refill in my neck of the woods). Not to mention the convenience.
  26. VikeMan

    VikeMan Advocate (740) Pennsylvania Jul 12, 2009

    Some places don't do direct refills and will only swap out 5 lb tanks. I do have a larger tank in addition to a couple of 5s, but it's an hour drive round trip for me to get it filled, vs. 15 minutes for a 5 pound swap. Still, if I had to do it all over again, I probably wouldn't have 5s.
  27. cubbyswans

    cubbyswans Savant (365) Missouri Jun 10, 2008

    They have to be inspected every 5 and if done properly, some of the internals should be replaced at that time because they do wear out. A ten year old tank that has not been inspected properly is illegal to fill and possibly dangerous.
  28. that pretty much goes without saying. My supplier swapped my son's tank that was out of date. My son pointed that out and was told that's not his headache.
  29. Good point. It actually just got put on the backburner. I settled on my first home on Friday and until the wife is happy with everything I think the kegerator project will have to take a backseat. I'll continue to monitor craigslist and I'll bite the bullet and buy a new one if need be.
  30. cubbyswans

    cubbyswans Savant (365) Missouri Jun 10, 2008

    lol - you'll never get a kegerator if that is the case.
    IceAce likes this.
  31. IceAce

    IceAce Advocate (560) California Jan 8, 2004


    "Kegerators are like kids...if you wait until the time is right, you'll never do it"

    ~ IceAce on October, 2012


    Edit: Cubby beat me by mere seconds!
  32. LOL. I bought the mini fridge & the tower taps and all the hardware and the the tower cooler. So whether she likes it or not the kegerator is in fact going to happen sooner rather than later...
  33. VikeMan

    VikeMan Advocate (740) Pennsylvania Jul 12, 2009

    So who's going to notice a CO2 cylinder added to that pile?
  34. She won't notice but I am feeling guilty and after all my expenditures lately, I'm looking to save a buck.
  35. I'm assuming "the Boston area" is Boston, MA?

    Try calling the places on ths list:
    http://wiki.wort.org/cgi-bin/moin.cgi/Boston_CO2_Locations

    Maybe they'll have one kicking around.
    jlordi12 likes this.
  36. Great link. Thank you , I definitely have airgas(hingham) on my radar, I think a 5lb tank was 70$ full
  37. Conventional wisdom says to keep a 5# tank as a spare. My wisdom says a 20# tank makes a nicer spare. I've now got two 20's. As long as I keep the leaks at bay, I can go 4-5 years between fills :)
  38. I ended up getting one of the 7 LB refurbished ones on their site. It was like 42$ including shipping, can't beat that.

    Thanks for the advice everyone
  39. VikeMan

    VikeMan Advocate (740) Pennsylvania Jul 12, 2009

    That's going to be very tall and skinny compared to typical 5 or 10 lb tanks. Do you have enough room for its height (assuming it's going inside your kegerator)?

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