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Refrigerant: How Much Is Left in My Tank?

Sell Your R12 Refrigerant

Refrigerant comes in all sorts of containers from small cans to 145 lb cylinders! When going through those old containers in your garage, or shop, the best way to figure out how much refrigerant is left in your tank is to weigh them. Weighing them can be done with either a bathroom scale or a refrigerant scale, if you have one, and then you’re good to calculate! 

Whatever weight the scale reads is the gross weight of your material, which is the combined weight of the container and the material inside the container. This doesn’t tell us how much refrigerant is left and this is where tare weights (TW) come in handy! The tare weight is how much the tank weighs empty. When the tare weight is subtracted from the gross weight you are left with the net weight of refrigerant.  

Pounds of Refrigerant Inside Tank (Net Weight) = Gross Weight – Tare Weight 

How do you figure out the tare weight for a refrigerant tank? 

After years of experiences and thousands of tanks processed, we have calculated exactly how much these tanks weigh when empty. Below are the tare weights of some of the most common disposable refrigerant containers we come across. These tare weights can vary depending on the manufacturer. 

Refrigerant Cylinder

15-20lb cylinders – TW is 4lbs

Refrigerant Cylinder

30lb cylinder – TW is 6lbs

Refrigerant Cylinder

50lb cylinder – TW is 10lbs

What about 145lb cylinders and recovery tanks?  

The tare weights for these kinds of containers can usually be found etched into the tank itself. Below are some examples of where you can find these tare weights etched. Note that this can vary from tank to tank.  

Refrigerant Cylinder

30lb recovery cylinder – TW is 17.8lbs


50lb recovery cylinder – TW is 28lbs

Refrigerant: How Much Is Left in My Tank?

145lb cylinder – TW is 59.2lbs without cap

What if I can’t find the tare weight on the tank? 

Here are some tare weight estimates you can use: 

Cylinder TypeTare Weight 
30lb recovery tank18 lbs 
50lb recovery tank28 lbs 
145lb cylinder5lbs  
100lb drum1lbs 
200lb drum20 lbs 

If you’re still unsure of how to figure out the tare weight of your tank, feel free to send us an email at !