ReFuel smart propane tank gauge to ensure you're cooking with gas
The Refuel is a smart tank gauge designed to ensure your tank is ready when you need it
The partnership between Quirky and GE continues to bear fruit following the release of various smart products designed to work in conjunction with the Wink app. Joining the family is Refuel, a smart propane gas gauge designed to ensure your barbeque guests aren't dished up a plate of salad and raw meat after your grill runs out of gas.
The brainchild of Anthony Reddington, the ReFuel consists of a ring base of reinforced plastic and rubber on which a barbeque's propane tank is placed. This ring acts as a scale to measure the weight of the tank and calculate the amount of fuel remaining, which can be displayed by a series of LEDs on a sensor module. This sensor module is connected to the base via a heat-resistant cable and attaches magnetically to the tank or grill.
Gas levels can also be tracked remotely through the Wink app (available for iOS and Android), which also tracks the user's barbequing habits over time to calculate the average tank life in days and the average number of grills per tank. The user can also receive alerts when gas is running low. However, Wink app functions require the ReFuel to be connected to the home Wi-Fi network.
The ReFuel is designed to work with any grills without hanging propane tanks and is powered by four AA batteries. The base measures 9.4 x 9.4 x 2 in (240 x 240 x 52 mm), while the magnetic sensor module measures 3.5 x 3.5 x 1 in (90 x 90 x 25 mm). It is priced at US$49.99.
The unit is introduced in the following video.
About the Author
Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag.
All articles by Darren Quick
I love technology & gadgets, but this is just stupid. How weatherproof is this thing? Past the issues of having to worry about batteries and how much wind & rain will it handle, how about sitting outside in below freezing temperatures for 3-6 months?
Why not just buy a standard sub-$20 tank gauge?
I agree with Purple-Stater. This thing isn't anything special. It's not even a new idea. This very similar device was covered in 2007: http://www.gizmag.com/go/7243/
This thing costs $49.99. You'd be better off just buying a spare tank at $45 including gas. Then when the one attached empties, swap them and refill at your convenience.
The only novelty here is that it connects to your smartphone which is only useful if it is internet connected and you carry an empty spare in your trunk... Then you could check your fuel level while at the grocery and refill the empty if needed. That would still mean a $99 investment that a full spare could have solved.
Um, yeah. Cute toy.
But, for about USD$13.00, I can buy a propane gas gauge at any home center. About a dozen companies now sell the gauges and they work like a champ.
No Batteries Required.
I swear, they are just throwing ideas at the wall and trying to see what sticks. I saw this yesterday at Home Depot, and it was already in the "clearance" section. Every one of them looked like they were returns that had been put back on the shelf.
interesting. you go to there website, they show 3 cnet reviews. one says he cannot sync to his phone. the second complains that the best case scenario for battery life is 60 days. and the third review is also negative, and quirky is displaying these on their website. i think i'm gonna hold off.
I will stay with the little 'Walmart' magnetic strip for about $10-15 bucks, sold almost everywhere and need no batteries. Measures by color-change divisions where the tank is warmer or colder above and below the gas level.
I would not buy this 'Gadget' for more than 5 Dollars and then the only reason would be curiosity and the possibility of cannibalizing it for some interesting parts. I agree with VirtualGathis; a spare full tank is the best solution. It's reliable and much more cost-effective.
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