The Inspired Hive

A busy mom building a creative home

Search


How to hide a propane gas tank in the yard

Disguise a heating fuel tank with a picket fence and keep that fence looking great with ease!

If you've ever driven down a country road, you've probably noticed that all of the houses have a big tank sitting in the yard. Rural life, and sometimes even suburban life, can mean no natural gas lines, so alternative heat sources have to be used. In our last house we had a giant oil tank in our unfinished basement. Here we have a propane gas tank in the yard. Gas tank doesn't usually equal curb appeal, so when we started looking for houses in this area, my mind was already spinning with ideas for how to hide one. Luckily, the house we fell in love with happened to already have a picket fence installed in front of the tank, but it needed a little love. Having a painted fence means occasional maintenance and upkeep because of peeling paint, but painting a fence every few years can be quick and painless with the right paint and tools. Today I'm sharing how to keep your painted fence looking good, plus a few more tips for disguising your heating fuel tank.

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

This post is sponsored by HomeRight. As always, I only recommend products I love and think you will too!
This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. For more information, see my disclosure policy.

How to repaint a picket fence

Here is the fence we started with. A cute little white picket fence around the front and sides of the propane tank. But the paint was dull, peeling, and moldy. Yuck. I liked that it was white, but it was definitely in need of repainting!

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

The key to a long lasting paint job is always proper surface preparation. In this case, we used our pressure washer to wash it off (read why I recommend owning your own pressure washer here). I don't think this fence had been maintained for a while because even after removing the mold with a pressure washer, it was still stained green in some areas! Here it is after cleaning...

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

I recommend waiting at least 24 hours after pressure washing before painting so that the wood is fully dry when you apply the paint. When you're ready to paint, protect any areas that you don't want to get paint on. I used plastic drop cloths to cover the fence and drape over plants. I ended up putting cardboard on the driveway too once I got started. Don't forget to protect yourself too! Wear old clothes and eye protection.

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

When doing any exterior painting projects, always use a paint meant for outdoor use. Using a weatherproof finish will give you the longest lasting results. If you just use a regular latex paint, you'll find yourself repainting every single year. I used Behr Premium Plus Exterior Satin Enamel in the ultra white paint straight off of the shelf at Home Depot.

You can obviously paint the fence with a brush, but getting each side of every board is long and tedious work. The fastest way to do it is with a paint sprayer. I absolutely love my HomeRight Finish Max. After using it to paint our kitchen cabinets a few years ago, it became one of my favorite DIY tools. It's quick and easy to set up, produces a professional looking paint finish, and is easy to clean up. If you have a bigger fence to tackle, HomeRight makes the Power Flo Pro which will pull paint or stain right from a 5 gallon bucket. We actually had a brand new picket fence installed along the road to keep our kiddos safe and will be using our Power Flo Pro to stain the fence once the wood has seasoned later this summer.

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

The key to a great finish when using a paint sprayer is thinning the paint properly. The HomeRight sprayer includes a viscosity cup that makes measuring the run-out time easy. Check your paint can for thinning guidelines and reference the paint sprayer manual to see how quickly the paint should run through the funnel to get the right thickness. Then before painting your project, do a few spray passes on a piece of cardboard to check your paint thickness. If it's too thin, you'll have a lot of drips and need to add more paint. If it's too thick, you'll see big splatters or chunks spraying out. Try adjusting the sprayer's flow first, and then thin some more if necessary. Your goal is a nice fine mist.

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

Spray one fence picket at a time, starting at the top and working your way down in a continuous spray. Release the trigger at the end of each pass. Angle the sprayer to the side so that you're spraying both the side and front of the picket, then spray the other side/front of the picket. Move onto the next one.


Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

You'll be surprised at how quickly you make progress and what a beautiful difference it's making already!

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

Once you're done spraying the front and sides of the fence, spray behind the fence if there is enough space between the fence and the tank. You may need to use a brush for hard to reach areas.

Follow directions from your paint can for how soon you can recoat. I recommend doing two coats for a long lasting finish.

Here we are two quick coats later! A nice bright white picket fence!

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

So much better, right?! Hardly an eyesore anymore! I can't wait to show you what it looks like when all of those irises are in bloom next spring too :)

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.

Tips for disguising an outdoor propane gas tank

Looking for ideas to hide your own fuel tank? Here's a few tips.

  1. Maintain the tank's appearance. In most cases, the company that provides your fuel is also responsible for maintaining the tank itself. If your tank is rusty or has peeling paint, ask the company if they can fix it for you.
  2. Install a picket fence in front of the tank. A short run of fencing is an affordable and easy way to disguise your tank. Paint it in a color similar to the tank color to help the tank blend in. You could also install a pre-made vinyl picket fence to make it easier to maintain.
  3. Put decorative items on the fence to distract the eye. I made this cute flower market sign out of some scrap wood. It adds some contrast to the white fence and adds something interesting to look at other than the tank.
  4. Do some landscaping. I was really hoping to grab photos of this project while all those irises were in bloom, but it rained for weeks on end and the blooms were gone by the time I could finally paint! BUT they were beautiful and really distracted from the big ugly tank. I also planted some daisies this year and an edging of phlox along the driveway. We'll fill in with some other seasonal plants too for a beautiful garden that has something growing year round. Greenery and florals are a great way to distract from a fuel tank.
Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.


Do you  have any other ideas for hiding a propane gas tank or oil tank? Share in a comment below!

Great idea to hide a propane gas tank in the yard with a cute picket fence! Plus how to maintain the fence to keep it nice and bright.


post signature

Related Posts:




No comments

Post a Comment