How Long Do Camping Fuel Canisters Last

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Camping is a passion. Once you find your inner peace in camping, then there is no coming back. Both backpacking and full-fledged camping render the same mental peace.

But camping can be more challenging than it seems. It is a toilsome job, and camping requires proper preparation.

Any camping is about surviving somewhere out of your comfort zone. For such an adventure, you need to be fully prepared and have proper knowledge of your equipment.

Food is one of the biggest challenges in any camping. You have to have an idea about how many meals you are going to need and pack your fuel canister accordingly. But before that, you need to know how long do camping fuel canisters last.


How long do camping fuel canisters last?

The life span of a regular camping fuel canister depends on a lot of factors. When asked the manufacturer companies how long do camping fuel canisters last, a generic answer was given.

According to them, any 1 lb. of fuel canister may last up to 1.52 hours.


How to determine the life span of a camping fuel canister?

If you want to know how long the camping fuel canister last, you need to know some factors. These factors determine the longevity of your fuel canister.

Every camping gas canister gives different longevity. You need to know the type of canister you are carrying, how you will use it, and where you are using it.

Time management is critical in these cases. You need to have a clear idea of how long you are going to be camping. The longer you stay, the more meals you’ll need. Thus, you’ll need more camping fuel.

How often you are planning to use your stove is another factor to observe. If you plan to cook just one meal a day, it will take less fuel. But if you want more than one adequately cooked dinner, then the canister won’t last long.

The canister brand is another vital issue to think about. Different brands offer different sorts of services. Other brands come in different sizes, and the stoves to burn varying amounts of fuel.

A simple principle is the size of the gas canister. If you carry a canister bigger in size, then it is evident that the canister will last longer. A smaller canister will burn out faster.

Overall, the weather is a significant factor. Your camping areas, altitude weather, etc. have a huge impact on the lifespan of your fuel canister. If you want a low maintenance canister, purchase a bigger one.


How much fuel should you carry during camping

Many people get tricked at this point. If you go camping often, you should have known by now exactly how much fuel you need per camping. But this information below is for the novice ones.

To determine how many fuel canisters you need to carry, you have to consider two factors. First, how many people will be camping with you and how many hot meals or drinks they need per day.

You can get the rough estimate if you multiply the total number of members in your group with the hot meals per day and then add the number of hot drinks they need.

When you get the total number of liters of water, you will need to boil; you’ll need to find out how much water your stove burns per ounce of fuel used. You can seek help from this chart.

MSR Canister Stove Water Boiled (Per oz. to fuel)
MicroRocket 2L
PocketRocket 2 2L
SuperFly 1.8L
WindPro II 1.8L


The chart is just the estimated amount. The total usage may vary depending on the weather, wind, altitude, etc.


What are the different conditions that may impact the fuel?

At the primary level, the stoves are typically tested at 70-degree Fahrenheit temperatures, with no wind, and sea-level.

  • Temperature

The pressure inside the canister depends on the temperature outside. If the weather is low, then it will cause the pressure in the canister to drop. The stove will struggle more to burn the gas, and thus the fuel will exhaust sooner.

Upright canister stoves only work reliably down to about 20˚F. So, if you are camping in a colder place, then it is suggested to carry liquid fuel and not a canister stove.

  • Altitude

Altitude is a significant issue when considering how long do camping fuel canisters last. Water boils faster at a higher height. On the other hand, raw food takes more time to cook at a higher altitude.

Research says that the water boiling point drops for every 18 degrees Fahrenheit, and the cooking time becomes double.

  • Wind

The wind is another most essential factor to consider fuel consumption time. If you are hit with a 5 MPH breeze, it can slow down your cooking for as much as three times than open flame burner stove; in cases like this using a windshield is helpful. It is better if you can cook any vestibule.

  • Water availability

Campers tend to boil snow to make pure drinking water in any scarcity. This boiling snow consumes a lot of fuel.

Even boiling water form glacier streams and ponds also take up much fuel. The colder the water, the more time it will take to boil.

  • Cooking type

What sort of cook you have also impacted the use of fuel on camping. If you are more into simple boiled food, then you will need less energy for cooking. But a multi-step gourmet cook will need more fuel. So, choose your cooking style wisely while camping.


How to know how much gas is left in a canister?

It often creates trouble when you cannot decide exactly how much gas is left in your used canister. If you want to reuse the same canister, there remains a possibility that the canister will be empty in the middle of your cooking.

You can weigh the canister in such cases. An empty 8 oz. fuel canister weighs 4.6 oz. So you add the remaining fuel to the 8 oz. of fuel that a new canister has. Then you need to consider your canister and subtract the weight. Now you know roughly how much energy you’ve used.

You can use a fuel gauge to measure the remaining fuel in your tank,  but there is no gauge specifically made for measuring MSR fuel canister. But you can find one for Jetboil canisters.


Tips for the best use of fuel canister:

Some short tips and tricks always help a lot in any project. The same goes for your camping experience. To get the most from your camping canister, you need to know how long do camping fuel canister last. You can sue some tricks for this longevity.

  • Prepare your supplies before starting to cook. If you are carrying pouch-cook meals, then you should take them out beforehand. Take out the oxygen absorber before the water boils.
  • Always try to use a windscreen. Wrap it around your principal cooking place. Blocking the airflow will make your fuel last longer.
  • You can try placing your canister in warm water before using it. This may help you in cold weather.
  • Try to use a lid. Water boils in vapors quickly. If you put the lid on, it will create a built-in pressure inside the pot and cook faster.
  • For sustainability and lower fuel cost, you can always choose liquid fuel. It might be a bit costly overall, but the fuel is very economical. And if you don’t want to deal with empty canister weigh on long trips, you can always top off the power in your bottle rather than having partial canisters sitting around.
  • Keep your group members’ numbers steady. Keep the proper count of them and the amount of boiled water or food they will need.
  • The amount of money you want to spend on fuel is also essential. The place where you are planning to purchase your fuel is crucial. The price varies with geography.
  • The camping fuel doesn’t need to be only used for cooking. How long do camping fuel canisters last also depends on using it for any other cause, such as lighting lanterns? So you have to be alert about this too.



Nobody wants to starve while out there camping. But it is quite impossible to consume unprocessed food on such a trip.

If you make mistakes in calculating how much fuel you need for the whole trip, it can cause uninvited problems. You need to avoid any such situation.

Do the math correctly and carry precisely how much you need. Knowing how long do camping fuel canisters last works a long way in this situation. If required, take an extra one to be sure. But remember not to make the bag too heavy because it will slow you down.

Choose wisely and use smartly. Follow the tricks. And hopefully, you will have a unique camping experience.