Mysterious Orange Stove Flame

Orange Propane Stove Flames

Orange Propane Stove Flames

The other day, Lora and I noticed that our coach, Freya’s, propane stove flame was burning orange.  What th…  At first, I thought, “Dang. We’re low on propane.”  But a quick check of the propane gauge showed that we had plenty of propane.

Next, we took off the stove top and looked to make sure everything was clean and that there wasn’t anything obviously wrong with the stove.  As if I would know if anything obvious was wrong.  Like are the burners present?  Check.  Do the knobs turn?  Check.  Does it get hot?  Check.  Ouch.  Ok.  There is nothing obviously wrong.

So, I hopped online and started researching.  What makes your propane flame orange?  Are we about to explode?  Should we be concerned?  Nope.  It’s just the humidifier.  The humidifier?  What the heck.  How can the humidifier make the propane stove flames burn orange?

As it turns out, we had just the day before purchased a new ultrasonic humidifier.  And here are the two best explanations for why it turned our propane flames orange.

Best Explanations: If you have a water softener (which we did), the softener is replacing the minerals in your hard water with sodium.  That water is then used in your utlrasonic humidifier.  The humidifier aerates the sodium into the air.  You’ve probably noticed the white powder these things generate.  The sodium spreads throughout your house and ends up getting into your propane stove’s air intake.  This sodium burns a bright yellow color and when mixed with the bright blue propane flame, you get orange.

Next Best Explanations: Hard water is full of minerals.  You put that hard water into your ultrasonic humidifier.  These minerals get aerated into your air and, like the above explanation, end up getting into your propane stove’s air feed.  These minerals then burn a bright yellow and when mixed with the bright blue propane flame, you get orange.

Bam!  Consider yourself enlightened 🙂

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