Your propane uses reach farther than just a good grill. One of the many other tools you can use it for is a good torch or soldering iron. Choosing the right one is important and based on your personal needs. Once you have have made your choice, fill up with Colorado propane so you can complete all of your projects!
How to Use Torches, Heat Guns, and Soldering Irons-and When
You only need a little heat to burn right through some repairs.
A little heat burns right through some thorny home fix-up problems. At the low end, 200 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, heat softens old paint and putty. At the higher end, 400 to 800 degrees, it can thaw frozen locks and rusted nuts and solder electrical and plumbing connections. Still more firepower, up to 3,000 degrees, will braze metals (a stronger form of soldering that uses harder filler materials) and cut or weld iron and mild steel.
High heat for home use is created with electricity or by igniting a gas such as propane, MAPP (methylacetylene-propadiene), or acetylene, each of which burns hotter than the last. While these gases will burn on their own using the oxygen in the air, to generate the most heat they need to be burned together with pure oxygen from a separate tank.
Oxygen-fuel torch (MAPP or propane)
Good For: Cutting and welding iron and steel, as in fence repairs. These gases don’t make as sharp and efficient a flame as an oxy-acetylene torch.
Pictured: Oxygen with MAPP gas, which always comes in a yellow cylinder. Though propane is cheaper.
Good For: Brazing, cutting, and welding iron and steel. Caution: Acetylene is harder to control and more dangerous than other fuels. Visit a welding supply store for the goggles and other protective gear — and welding classes — you’ll need to use it safely.
Pictured: A compact oxy-acetylene combo kit, typical of the way these torches are sold.
Good For: Soldering coper pipes, brazing, and heating frozen pipes and rusted nuts.
Pictured: A torch with an electronic ignition, which is safer and more reliable than a spark, and a flame-spreading tip that lowers the heat for softening paint and caramelizing foods.
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