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Calor Gas discontinuing some smaller bottles background image

Calor Gas discontinuing some smaller bottles

Cube, 3.9kg Propane, 4.5kg Butane, 6Lite Propane and 12kg Butane cylinders all to be discontinued.

Calor Cube Butane Bottle
Calor Cube Butane

Recent Calor gas cylinder shortages have been well documented; increased demand throughout the pandemic, a growth in self-build leisure vehicles, whilst maintenance issues and staff shortages at key depots have all led to supply chain issues over the last couple of years.

If you've tried to get hold of a 4.5kg or 7kg Calor butane gas bottle, you've likely been met with a shake of the head from your usual supplier. J. R . Hartley made fewer calls in the 80s than we did when trying to source some of the popular smaller-capacity cylinders last year.

To help reduce the impact some of the issues have caused, Calor has announced that they will be streamlining their offering from 1st February 2023.

What cylinders are being discontinued?

Calor 3.9kg Propane bottle
Calor 3.9kg Propane bottle

The following cylinders are being discontinued from 1st February 2023:

  • Cube
  • 3.9kg Propane
  • 4.5kg Butane
  • 6Lite Propane
  • 12kg Butane

Why are these sizes being discontinued?

Calor 12kg Butane bottle
Calor 12kg Butane bottle

Paul Downes, Calor's National Account Manager for the leisure and hospitality sector, says, "Improving our cylinder service is a priority. Our existing range of cylinders is creating complexity within our supply chain. This means longer change over times and reduced filling capacity on high-volume key sizes. That's why we've taken the difficult decision to reduce our cylinder range, simplifying the business. We realise this change will affect customers that rely on these sizes, but we know these changes are necessary to improve our cylinder service significantly."

What if I have one of these bottles?

So, what can you do if you already have one of the sizes that are being discontinued? Assuming bottle dimensions (and weight) aren't an issue, alternative capacity cylinders are available, often without swapping regulators. Those looking for a 4.5kg Butane could be offered a 7kg Butane, and those looking for a 3.9kg Propane could swap to a 6kg Propane. If that doesn't suit you, then the Campingaz range might have a suitable alternative.

Compatability Table

Current Cylinder SizeExchange toNew Regulator Required
Cube Butane7kg Butane*No
3.9kg Propane6kg PropaneNo
4.5kg Butane7kg ButaneYes - See below for further guidance
6kg Lite Propane6kg PropaneNo
12kg Butane15kg ButaneNo

*7kg Butane will not fit the "Cube Heater"

What if I need to change my regulator?

If you currently have a 4.5kg Butane cylinder, you'll need a new regulator to switch to a 7kg Butane bottle. We always recommend using a gas-safe registered engineer when changing regulators, though Calor has produced a helpful YouTube video.

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What if I'm restricted to a 4.5kg butane bottle?

Calor 4.5kg Butane bottle
Calor 4.5kg Butane bottle

If you are restricted on cylinder size due to space limitations, you might be able to swap from a Calor 4.5kg Butane cylinder to a Campingaz 907 bottle

This bottle does have a smaller capacity at 2.72kg but is the largest Campingaz offer at 20.3 x 23.5cm. They weigh around 6.5kg when full and hold enough gas to run a double-burner stove for approximately 8 hours. 

You will need to change from a Calor regulator to a Campingaz regulator, and these are readily available with or without an attached hose. Again, we recommend you consult a gas-safe registered engineer when changing regulators.

Buy a Campingaz regulator without a hose 

Buy a Campingaz regulator with a hose

What about the 6kg Lite cylinder?

Calor 6kg Lite Propane bottle
Calor 6kg Lite Propane bottle

Problems with the supply and delivery of the Calor Lite 6kg Propane bottle are nothing new, with rumours of a replacement product dating back to 2017.

The initial batch of Lite bottles (made between 2008 and 2011) suffered from manufacturing and maintenance issues, including a product recall of the older bottles in 2014.

Unfortunately, Calor tells us there are currently no plans to replace the Calor Lite product.

Alternative options

If the above options don't work for you, then there are a couple of alternatives.

Gaslow

Single Gaslow 2.7kg Cylinder Kit with Direct Fill
Single Gaslow 2.7kg Cylinder Kit with Direct Fill

Gaslow offers refillable cylinders and refillable cylinder-based systems that store LPG (or Autogas, as some European retailers brand it). 

A Gaslow refill at a garage forecourt works out to around 50% of the cost of a Calor swap; however, there is a higher initial outlay for the bottle or for the purchase and professional installation of a system. So you might need to do some maths before taking the plunge.

A further advantage is that these bottles can be refilled throughout Europe (subject to having the correct adaptor), and you don't need to wait until the bottle is completely empty.

Flo Gas

Flo Gas 5kg Gaslight
Flo Gas 5kg Gaslight

Flogas is a bottle-swap alternative, and they offer a couple of lighter options, with their 5kg and 10kg Gaslight options being popular alternatives for caravanners and motorhomers. These bottles take a 27mm regulator and are translucent, allowing you to see the remaining gas level. 

Flogas also offer a 3.9kg propane bottle and a 4.5kg butane bottle, which may provide you with a suitable direct swap for the discontinued smaller Calor bottles. 

Further information

Further details can be found on the Calor website.

Butane versus Propane

If you're a year-round camper, then you're probably already aware of the limitations of butane once the thermometer heads below zero. The boiling point of butane is -2 °C (28.4 °F). This means that the closer you get to 0° and below, the harder it is to produce a gas vapour. 

There is more at play than just the ambient temperature; humidity, bottle construction, and the amount of gas used all play a part in the performance of your appliance's efficiency. By comparison, the boiling point of propane is -42°C (-43.6 °F) In short, if you camp or caravan year-round, then it's likely that propane would be a better option for you.

An Autogas Pump
An Autogas Pump

LPG percentage mixtures by country.

LPG purchased from a pump at a UK or Ireland garage will generally be 100% propane, whereas elsewhere in Europe, this can be a mix of propane and butane. Furthermore, this can vary by season to allow for proper vaporisation. 

If you're looking for LPG on the continent, you may need to look for GPL (in French, it is “gaz de pétrole liquéfié” and in Spanish, it is called “gas licuado de petróleo”.)

Austria80% propane / 20% butane (summer)
Upto 100% propane (winter)
Belgium60% propane / 40% butane
Czech Republic40% propane / 60% butane (summer)
60% propane / 40% butane (winter)
Denmark70% propane / 30% butane
Finalnd95% propane / 5% butane
Greece20% propane / 80% butane
Hungary

40% propane / 60% butane

Italy20% propane / 80% butane (summer)
90% propane / 10% butane (winter)
Portugal92% propane / 8% butane
Slovenia35% propane / 65% butane
Spain35% propane / 65% butane
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