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The Camp Cooking Guide: How to Get The Most Out of Your Fuel Canisters?

Fuel canisters are the most important tool when hiking and backpacking. The fuel cans have changed the way we look at cooking during camps as it has evolved from building a fire to cook to simply lighting up the portable stoves. Therefore, it is very important to understand our fuel canisters and what affects them to get the most out. 

Canisters are filled with pressurized gasses. When opened, the fuel comes out and thus helps in fueling the fire. They are best for short trips and are very easy to use. 


What affects the fuel canisters? 

The most important factor to consider when it comes to fuel canisters is temperature. We are a blend of gases that usually contain propane and butane or a mix of propane and isobutene. Internal pressure is usually in a liquid form while some of the gas is vapor rises well. When you attach the stove to the gas canisters, the gas releases, which helps the burners to burn flames. For the flame to start, the internal pressure of the fuel canister is very important. It needs to be greater than the pressure that is outside. If the pressure drops too much, then the liquid won’t vaporize to gas, making it impossible for the flame to start. 

The temperature of the canister is affected by two things: the outside air and the running of the stove. The canister might be strong initially, but it might start to cool off once the temperature drops, which will also mean that the pressure is dropping. If the pressure drops and the weather outside is cold, it will be tough to have a hot meal on the menu.

When it comes to butane canisters, the store's temperature can draw at around 31° Fahrenheit. And for isobutene canisters, this takes place when the temperature is 11° Fahrenheit. The efficiency of the cooking will also be affected even before it hits this temperature. 

The altitude also affects the working of the canister. As the altitude outside affects the pressure, the internal pressure of the canister is also affected. Higher altitudes result in lower pressure outside, which can help balance the canister's pressure better.


How to keep the stove burning stronger and longer?

Keep the canisters warm: 

You can have your stove burning longer by keeping the canister from getting cold. It is better to warn of the canister before it is attached to the store by storing it inside the sleeping bag overnight or stuffing it in an insulated jacket. It is always better to warm up at least two canisters so that if one of them starts getting cold, you can use the other one for cooking.


Choose isobutene fuel mixes: 

Isobutene is a very high vapor fuel. And hence, the fuel formulation matters a lot. The isobutene vaporizes but helps maintain the canister pressure when the temperature is at 20 degrees or lower. 


Use liquid feed mode for the stove: 

Some stoves allow inverting the canister that helps in feeding liquid fuel. This helps in running the cooking pot strong without having to vaporize. Also, you can carry a camping cooking set to cook in the camps and have fun with your friends and family while having your dinner or lunch.


Building a wind barrier:

Building a rock wall surrounding the stove area will help mitigate wind. However, any wind can affect the cooking period; hence it is better to use a windscreen. Our product, the NH 8-piece windshield, will be the best choice when looking for a barrier. It is foldable and made of stainless steel while being ready to set up. Also, since you would be hiking on the top of the mountain with blazing and chilled winds circling around, you must use the right camping gear.

Insulate the canister: 

Placing a non-flammable barrier under the canister will help keep it away from the cold ground and keep the cooking pots AU warmer. In addition, this will allow supplying the stove with fuel. 


Don’t waste a lot of fuel in boiling: 

When cooking something that needs boiled water, it is always advised not to bring the water to a boil. Instead, it is better to boil one part of water and then add cold water into it, resulting in warm water and very little fuel. Are you camping for the first time? If yes, then you can go through our guide to learn the essential tips for camping.


Lower the temperature: 

To get the most out of the tank, turn the stove's temperature. The performance will be affected a lot, yet the fuel consumed will reduce considerably, increasing the efficiency and longevity of the fuel canister. 

It is always important to know how your fuel canisters work to function the way you want. It is very important to ensure that you carry all the essentials, including travel pots and pans, camping stove, windshield, and many more, for a smooth adventure. You must give priority to safety as well. Along with the fuel canister, first aid, knives, shelter and extra food is also very important to carry. It works differently for different people, so pack what works best for you. The essentials also depend on how long the trip is and whether it is a solo trip or a group hike. 


Image from: NH 8 Piece windshield



How much fuel to carry also depends on the criteria of your trip. It will be better to know your numbers and calculate the number of people and the meals, including the hot drinks that the group will require. Once you get an estimate, you can decide on the numbers and do the math for the total grams of fuel needed. The weather conditions will also decide how much to carry as well as the wind.

As discussed earlier, the temperature and altitude have major impacts on the fuel canisters’ pressure. The type of meal that is being cooked will affect the longevity as well, and it is always better to choose simple dishes that do not require too much boiling. There are many tips and tricks available, and if all things are kept in mind, it will help you get the most out of your canisters and enjoy meals during the trip! 

What did you think about our article? We’d love to hear from you. Share your thoughts in the comment section below! Itching to go on a camping trip? Check out How Do You Know if a Tent is Waterproof?. Also, don’t forget to check out our store for more camping gear!

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