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LPG vs. CNG: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Published on February 6, 2024
LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas) is a mix of propane and butane stored under pressure as a liquid, while CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) is mainly methane compressed at high pressure and stored as a gas.
LPG vs. CNG

Key Differences

Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) is primarily a mixture of propane and butane, stored in liquid form under moderate pressure. It is produced during natural gas processing and oil refining. Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), predominantly composed of methane, is stored under high pressure in a gaseous state. CNG is obtained by compressing natural gas to less than 1% of its volume at standard atmospheric pressure.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 06, 2024
LPG is known for its versatility and is used in heating appliances, cooking equipment, and vehicles. Its energy content is higher per volume compared to CNG, making it more efficient in specific applications. CNG, on the other hand, is primarily used as a cleaner alternative to gasoline and diesel in transportation. It burns more cleanly than LPG, producing fewer pollutants and greenhouse gases.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 06, 2024
The storage of LPG requires pressure-resistant vessels, as it is stored as a liquid. This liquid state makes it denser and easier to transport and store in smaller tanks. Conversely, CNG requires high-pressure storage (up to 3000 psi), often resulting in larger and heavier tanks. This can be a limiting factor in vehicle design and storage facilities.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 06, 2024
In terms of safety, LPG is heavier than air, which means in the event of a leak, it tends to settle at ground level, posing a risk of fire and explosion. CNG is lighter than air, so it disperses quickly when leaked, reducing the risk of fire. However, the high storage pressure of CNG also presents unique safety challenges.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 06, 2024
LPG's global supply chain is well-established, with robust infrastructure for transport and distribution, making it widely available. CNG distribution is more challenging due to the need for high-pressure pipelines and storage systems, limiting its availability to areas with established infrastructure.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 06, 2024
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Comparison Chart

Composition

Mixture of propane and butane
Mainly methane
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State and Storage

Stored under pressure as liquid
Compressed and stored as gas
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Energy Efficiency

Higher energy content per volume
Lower energy content compared to LPG
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Primary Use

Heating, cooking, vehicles
Alternative fuel for vehicles
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Environmental Impact

Produces more pollutants than CNG
Burns cleanly, fewer pollutants
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Safety Concerns

Heavier than air, risk of ground-level accumulation
Lighter than air, disperses quickly, high-pressure concerns
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Storage and Transportation

Requires pressure-resistant vessels, easier to transport
Requires high-pressure storage, challenges in transportation
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Availability

Widely available due to established supply chain
Limited to areas with infrastructure
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LPG and CNG Definitions

LPG

LPG is a versatile fuel used in a variety of applications, from heating to powering vehicles.
LPG-powered forklifts are common in many warehouses.
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Jan 11, 2024

CNG

CNG is a clean, environmentally friendly fuel made from compressed natural gas.
Many city buses run on CNG to reduce urban pollution.
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LPG

LPG is an efficient energy source, producing high calorific value.
LPG is preferred in remote locations for its energy efficiency.
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Jan 11, 2024

CNG

CNG is used in homes for cooking and heating, offering a cleaner combustion.
Many households are switching to CNG for its cost-effectiveness and cleaner burn.
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 11, 2024

LPG

LPG is a mixture of hydrocarbon gases used as fuel in heating appliances and vehicles.
Many camping stoves are powered by portable LPG cylinders.
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Jan 11, 2024

CNG

CNG is used primarily as a substitute for gasoline and diesel in automobiles.
CNG cars are popular due to their low emission levels.
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 11, 2024

LPG

LPG is a portable, clean-burning fuel made from petroleum.
Many households use LPG for cooking and heating.
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CNG

CNG is methane stored under high pressure as a gas.
CNG stations compress natural gas for vehicle refueling.
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LPG

LPG is a liquefied gas that turns to vapor at room temperature.
When LPG leaks, it evaporates quickly into the air.
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CNG

CNG is a safer alternative to other fossil fuels due to its lighter-than-air quality.
In case of a CNG leak, the gas quickly disperses, minimizing fire risks.
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 11, 2024

Repeatedly Asked Queries

What are the main uses of LPG?

LPG is used in residential heating, cooking, and as automotive fuel.
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How does LPG compare to natural gas in heating efficiency?

LPG has a higher calorific value, making it more efficient than natural gas.
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What is LPG?

LPG is a mixture of propane and butane, used as a fuel in heating, cooking, and vehicles.
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Is LPG environmentally friendly?

LPG burns cleaner than many other fuels but still produces greenhouse gases.
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How is LPG stored and transported?

LPG is stored as a liquid under moderate pressure in tanks and cylinders.
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What are the primary uses of CNG?

CNG is mainly used in transportation as a cleaner alternative to petrol and diesel.
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Shumaila Saeed
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Which is more cost-effective for vehicles, LPG or CNG?

The cost-effectiveness depends on local fuel prices and vehicle efficiency.
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How does CNG impact the environment?

CNG burns cleaner than other fossil fuels, producing fewer emissions.
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Which is more energy-efficient, LPG or CNG?

LPG is more energy-efficient per volume compared to CNG.
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Can LPG be used in CNG vehicles and vice versa?

No, they require specifically designed engines and fuel systems.
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How is CNG stored and transported?

CNG is stored at high pressure in gas form in cylinders.
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What are the storage challenges for CNG?

CNG requires high-pressure storage tanks, which can be bulky and heavy.
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How does the availability of LPG compare to CNG?

LPG is more widely available due to a well-established global supply chain.
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Feb 06, 2024

What is CNG?

CNG is Compressed Natural Gas, mainly methane, used as an alternative to gasoline and diesel.
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Is CNG safer than LPG?

CNG is generally considered safer as it is lighter than air and disperses quickly.
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How do LPG and CNG contribute to reducing air pollution?

Both fuels burn cleaner than traditional fossil fuels, reducing air pollution.
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Shumaila Saeed
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Can LPG and CNG be used in the same heating systems?

No, they require different systems due to their distinct properties and storage requirements.
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What are the storage challenges for LPG?

LPG requires pressure-resistant vessels to maintain its liquid state.
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What factors affect the choice between LPG and CNG for a vehicle?

Factors include fuel availability, vehicle design, and personal preferences.
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Are LPG and CNG interchangeable in appliances?

No, they require different handling and storage systems.
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About Author
Shumaila Saeed
Written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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