Like natural gas, propane is a safe and efficient way to power your home but as with any fuel, safety is a must. Propane is a colorless, odorless gas that is compressed into a liquid. Since propane is a highly noxious gas that can kill quickly if a leak goes undetected, gas companies add a smell to it, similar to rotten eggs. This smell helps us detect propane leaks before they can poison us. Please follow the below guidelines to ensure the safety of your home while using propane.
1-Inspect your propane system- You will want to maintain a yearly inspection of your propane system to help ensure it continues to be safe to use. Make sure your tank is clean, free of rust, and other corrosion, and properly maintained. This includes inspecting valves, hoses, and your regulator for any leaks. Performing a spray test is an easy way to find out if your system is leaking. This is done by spraying soapy water in the area you are testing to see if any bubbles are produced. If you do notice bubbles forming, shut down your system by closing all the valves and contact your propane professional immediately.
2-Keep your propane tanks in a cool dry area-Don't expose your tanks to heat above 120 degrees. On really hot days, it won’t hurt to use Reflectix, aluminum shade cloth, or even ice to help keep your propane tanks cool.
3-Do not let your tank run out of gas-When propane tanks are empty and then filled, they are more likely to develop a leak. Water and air can seep into an empty propane tank, causing it to rust. Water, air, and rust result in odor loss — a reduction of the concentration of the unpleasant odor that manufacturers include in propane as a warning sign. Your pilot light also goes out when you run out of propane and you will need to reignite the flame if it does.
4-Properly vent and adjust all equipment- This will help ensure you have enough fresh air for safe combustion. Maintaining all your equipment per the manufacturer's manual will help your appliances last longer and make any issues easier to catch.
5-What do I do if I smell gas??- The first step you need to take is to extinguish all flames and shut down your indoor valves. In the event you do smell gas, do not turn on the lights, use any other appliances, or use your cell phone. These sources can produce flames or sparks that can trigger a fire or worse, an explosion. Next, proceed to shut the valve off at your tank that will be located outside. You will then want to leave the area and contact a propane professional(usually your propane provider) and if they are not available, please contact your local fire department.
Propane is a great choice for powering your home both economically as well as environmentally. If you take care of your propane system along with its appliances you will be able to enjoy a safe, efficient and warm environment in your home!! If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office!!