Propane 101: Where Does Propane Come From?

gas flameWhether you use propane or you’re thinking of using it, you may be wondering where exactly it comes from. Unlike natural gas, propane does not occur naturally. It is created or manufactured for residential and commercial use. But that does not mean that it is inferior to natural gas. Actually, the fact that it is manmade is a major benefit. Propane has been chemically engineered to be safe and efficient. If you’re considering using propane in Greensboro for the first time, here’s what you should know.

Propane is Made from Crude Oil or Natural Gas

Both crude oil and natural gas can be refined to create propane. It is what chemists refer to as a three-carbon alkaline. It exists as a gas under normal pressure, but can be pressurized into a liquid form for ease of storage and transport. When natural gas is processed, propane is one of the components that is removed, along with butane and ethane. When petroleum is made into gasoline or heating oil, propane is a by-product. Therefore propane comes from either natural gas or petroleum.

The Discovery and History of Propane

Marcellin Berthelot first discovered propane in France in 1857. It was then discovered in the US by Edmund Ronalds in 1864 in Pennsylvania light crude oil. But the real beginning of the propane industry was in 1910 when the US Bureau of Mines representative Walter O. Snelling touted it as a potential household energy source. In 1912 the New York Times published an article about Snelling’s work with liquefying the gas and thus it spread and eventually developed into the propane industry we know today.

There are Many Benefits to Propane in Greensboro

 

  • Manmade. The fact that propane does not have to be mined is a major advantage. Though it does have to be made from either natural gas or crude oil, those fuels are currently easy to access. As long as natural gas or petroleum exists, so can propane. And because it is chemically manufactured it can be altered in many ways.
  • Only burns at extremely high temperatures. Propane is one of the safest fuels because it will only burn at extremely high temperatures, which are rarely achieved, even by a house fire.
  • Environmentally friendly. Propane is non-toxic, burns clean, and will not contaminate groundwater in the case of a leak or spill.
  • Efficient. Propane creates more heat/energy per BTU than natural gas. It can heat your home and water faster and sustain a radiant heat that feels cozier on cold days.
  • Easy to transport. In its liquid form, propane is easy to store and move from place to place.
  • Alternative fuel where natural gas is not available. Not every home has access to natural gas. Propane is an alternative that can be delivered rather than tapped into.
  • Only buy propane when you need it. Rather than paying a monthly bill, you can simply pay when you need your tank refilled. Though many propane services do offer a monthly payment option to spread the cost more evenly.  

 

Call Berico today to request propane in Greensboro or speak to an expert about switching: (336) 273-8663.

Spring Cleaning your Propane Appliances

fireplace logsSpring is a season of fresh starts. Many people perform a spring cleaning regiment both inside and outside of their home. Whether or not you do any spring cleaning, it’s important to clean your propane appliances each year, and spring is an ideal time to do it. Greensboro propane supplier, Berico, suggests these spring cleaning tips for your propane appliances.

Your Furnace Needs Yearly Cleaning and Maintenance

It may seem counter-productive to clean you propane furnace at the end of the heating season, but there’s actually a good reason to do so. After a long, cold winter your furnace has worked hard to keep your home warm and cozy for the past few months. Soot, dust, and dirt have likely built up in your furnace, filters, and ducts. When that stuff sits in your system during the hot, humid months it can cause rusting and other damage to your furnace. For thorough cleaning, call Berico and schedule a tune-up. The experts know just what to do to clean up your furnace at the end of the cold season.

It’s Time to Fire Up the Grill for some Backyard Barbecues—But First, Clean it

Your grill has probably been sitting outside all winter, perhaps under a cover, but still unused and exposed to the elements. Even if it’s been inside a garage or screened-in porch the dust and grime can build up inside. Scrub the grates and the inside of the grill. Empty the drip can. If your propane tank is still connected, check the connection and the condition of the tank itself. Also, check the propane level and get a refill or swap your tank if necessary. Make sure your grill is clean and free of debris before you light it for the first time.

Clean all your Indoor Propane Appliances from the Fireplace Logs to the Clothes Dryer

  • Cleaning Fireplace Logs. When it comes to propane fireplace logs, yearly cleaning is important, especially for the non-vented type. Follow these step-by-step instructions for cleaning your gas fireplace logs. Or take the easier, safer route and call Berico for this service.
  • Cleaning your Clothes Dryer. The biggest issue with clothing dryers is lint build up. Follow these instructions for deep cleaning your dryer. Be sure to always turn off the propane supply to your dryer before cleaning.
  • Cleaning your Water Heater. Plumbers recommend flushing your water heater yearly. It could be a DIY project with experience, but it may be best to call your plumber for this service. When it comes to propane water heaters, the propane line and related parts should be inspected and cleaned by your propane supplier. Berico can handle this portion.

Berico can Clean all of your Greensboro Propane Appliances in One Maintenance Appointment

The most convenient way to spring clean all of your propane appliances is to let Berico do it for you. Call and schedule a maintenance appointment this spring and get all of your appliances cleaned and tuned up at once. Berico will also inspect your propane tank and gas line and refill it if needed. You’ll be ahead of the game way before fall when you’ll need your furnace again. Call Berico, your trusted Greensboro propane supplier and schedule an appointment today: (336) 273-8663.

Tips on Choosing the Right Propane Supplier

Gas flameIf you’re a new propane user or you’re thinking of switching, choosing a supplier is an important decision. Not all suppliers offer the same level of service and the same options. You are not obligated to use the company whose name is on your tank. In most areas, there are a variety of suppliers to choose from. Before deciding on a propane supplier in Eden, consider these tips.

Look for a Supplier who offers Automatic Deliveries (and Furnace Maintenance as a Bonus)

Do you want to have to keep tabs on the propane level in your tank, or would you rather let your supplier handle that? Most customers would choose a supplier who will calculate your propane usage and time your automatic deliveries accordingly. Running out of propane is not only inconvenient, but it requires additional maintenance upon refilling the tank. When a tank gets completely empty the pressurization can get out of whack and leaks can easily occur at the time of refill. And if your tank runs out on a cold day, it will take even longer to get your home warm again. It’s also beneficial to find a company that offers furnace maintenance with deliveries so that you can have one company handle all of your home heating needs (and perhaps even your cooling needs as well).

Find a Reliable Supplier with a Good Reputation and Safety Rating

Ask friends and neighbors what supplier they use and if they are satisfied with their service. Check the status of any company you’re considering with the Better Business Bureau. Read online reviews (not just the ones posted on the company’s website). Check to make sure the supplier is licensed in the state where they do business. Look up their safety ratings as well through the BBB to be sure you’re choosing a reliable company.

Ask about Fees and Pricing and get all the Details Before Signing any Contracts

Many propane suppliers will avoid mentioning the fees they charge for certain services or the cancellation of services. Initial pricing may also be promotional and your price for later refills could be much higher. Ask questions and get everything in writing before signing up for propane deliveries with any company. Make sure you understand all of the rules and fine print. Don’t work with a company that is not forthcoming about any aspect of their services.

Carolina Fuels is a Propane Supplier you can Trust

When you look up Carolina Fuels through the Better Business Bureau, you will find an A+ accreditation for customer service and safety. Ask around the community and you’ll hear nothing but positive things. When you speak with a representative at Carolina Fuels you’ll get all the information you need up front, no mystery. Comfort and Protection Service Plans are available that combine your propane deliveries and HVAC system maintenance in one convenient package that saves you money and offers benefits like discounts on propane and repairs. Make Carolina Fuels your propane supplier of choice today: (336) 623-9741.

Steps to Take if you Suspect a Propane Gas Leak

Gas flameA propane gas leak is a very serious matter, and should not be taken lightly. While propane is a safe fuel that only burns at very high temperatures, a leak could lead to a high concentration of gas in a certain area and a spark could cause it to ignite. If you smell gas or suspect a leak for any reason, your Reidsville propane supplier, Carolina Fuels, recommends taking the following steps.

Step 1: Put Out Any Source of Flame or Spark. If you’re grilling, turn off your grill. If you’re home, turn off your furnace. Put out candles and any other source of flame. Do not use electricity.

Step 2: Turn off the Gas Valve on your Propane Tank. If you can, turn your propane off at the tank valve. Simply turn it clockwise until it won’t turn any further. If you can’t figure out how to turn it off or if you are having trouble turning the valve, proceed to the next step.

Step 3: Get Away. If you smell propane inside your home, get yourself and your family out immediately. If you smell propane outside, leave the vicinity. Do not go back inside your home. Get to a safe distance before proceeding to the next step.

Step 4: Call your Reidsville Propane Supplier. Once you are a safe distance away, use your cell phone or another phone to call your propane supplier and alert them that there may be a leak. If you can’t get your propane company on the phone, call 911. Your local fire department will respond to a potential gas leak if necessary.

Step 5: Stay Away until the Area is Deemed Safe. Do not return to your home until it is determined to be safe according to your propane supplier or another emergency responder. Only take the word of a professional in this case.

Prevent Propane Gas Leaks with Regular Inspection and Maintenance

Propane gas leaks are not common, but unfortunately they can happen. However, you can help prevent them by scheduling routine inspection and maintenance for your tank and gas line. Your Reidsville propane supplier will typically do an inspection when refilling your tank. But if it’s been a while since your last refill, it would be wise to have an inspection. Large tanks won’t necessarily need to be refilled every year; it depends on the amount of propane your household uses. For ultimate safety, an inspection should be done yearly whether or not you get a refill.

Carolina Fuels Performs Propane Tank and Gas Line Inspections

Safe propane use is a top priority for Carolina Fuels. Whether you’re new to propane use or you’re a seasoned pro, always exercise proper safety precautions when it comes to your propane tank, gas line, and appliances. If you’re ever unsure about any aspect of your propane, contact your Reidsville propane supplier, Carolina Fuels: (336) 623-9741. Consider signing up for a Comfort and Protect Service Plan for regular HVAC maintenance and propane delivery. Your inspections and tank refills will be automatic, meaning you don’t have to try and remember to call. Let Carolina Fuels handle all of your propane and home comfort needs.

What to do if Your Propane Tank is Making Noise

Are there noises coming from your propane tank? No, this is not normal and may indicate a problem. But don’t panic. Most of the problems that cause these noises are easy for your Burlington propane supplier to fix. If your tank is making noise, call Alamance Oil (336) 226-9371 right away. Then read on for more information on what the problem may be.  

What Sounds are you Hearing? 

There are 3 common sounds your propane tank might make. 

  • Knocking. If you hear a knocking sound as if something is bumping around inside your tank, there is likely an imbalance of air and gas inside. Another indicator of this is the flame. You should see a blue flame with a yellow tip. If you see a yellow or white flame, you have a problem. This imbalance can be dangerous and should be corrected as soon as possible. Call your propane supplier right away. 
  • Hissing. When you hear a hissing sound, it most likely indicates a leak. Turn off the tank itself, your furnace, and any appliances that use propane. Then call your supplier to come out and fix the leak. 
  • Humming or Gurgling. These noises may not be as noticeable as a knocking or hissing sound, but they still indicate a problem. The problem is likely that your tank was overfilled. In this case there is too much pressure in the tank, which puts strain on the regulator. This in turn causes a low flow of propane out of the tank. An indication of this is when the flame appears to be lower than usual. Call your supplier to drain the excess propane. Another possible cause of humming is vibrations of the regulator or air that is trapped somewhere in the line or system. Either way, it’s best to call your Burlington propane supplier to be sure the problem is properly diagnosed and repaired. 

Call Alamance Oil, Your Burlington Propane Supplier, to Restore Peace and Quiet to your Tank 

Propane is a safe energy source as long as it is handled properly by trained professionals. If you hear unusual sounds coming from your propane tank, call the experts at Alamance Oil to identify and correct the problem. =Leaks and other tank issues can be dangerous if not promptly repaired.  

If Alamance Oil is not your current Burlington propane supplier, there are many benefits to switching. Alamance Oil is a local supplier which means your propane won’t have to travel as far to get to you, which saves you money. Free tank swap outs are available for new customers, making it easy to switch suppliers. Alamance Oil offers affordable service agreements that include propane delivery discounts and HVAC maintenance. Call (336) 226-9371 to start the process of switching to Alamance Oil today.