What is Propane?

Propane is a safe and widely available fuel that consumers have relied on for nearly a century. It’s one of the world’s cleanest and most versatile sources of energy. Each year, nearly 60 million Americans use about 18 billion gallons of this efficient and environmentally friendly fuel in their homes, farms, businesses and industries.In the residential markets, propane is used primarily for space heating, water heating, clothes drying, whole-home generators and cooking.Commercial customers use propane in many of the same ways residential customers do. Additionally, propane can be used as motor fuel to power forklifts, over-the-road vehicles, and stationary engines.There are also industrial applications, such as fueling large-scale furnaces, cutting metals and in other process applications. In the agricultural market, propane is primarily used for crop drying, tobacco curing, poultry brooding and weed control.Propane is clean burning and, when consumed, produces only negligible amounts of pollutants, which is why propane is such a safe and efficient green energy source year round.

How Does Propane Reach Your Home?

It is important to become familiar with the parts of your propane system so that in the case of a leak or emergency, you can take quick and appropriate action.

Propane is delivered to your home in liquid form and is pumped into a specially designed storage tank. The liquid changes to a gas before it leaves the tank. Propane tanks are typically painted white or silver to reflect heat and to prevent the pressure inside the tank from getting too high.

If you have an underground tank, only the cover will be visible above ground.

The cover on top of the tank protects several components from weather and physical damage, including:
• The tank shut-off valve, which you can close to stop the flow of propane to your home in case of a leak or other emergency.
• The regulator, which controls the pressure of the propane gas coming out of the tank.
• The safety relief valve, which will open automatically if the pressure inside the tank gets too high. The valve will close again when the pressure returns to normal.
• The tank gauge, which shows the percentage of propane in the tank. When full, the gauge will read 80%. The remaining 20% is to enable gas expansion in the tank that may result from an increase in temperature.

Propane flows from your tank to your home through pipes, most of which run through the attic and partition space, crawlspace, strapped to the exterior wall or underground. You may also have a secondary pressure regulator on an outside wall of your home to further adjust gas pressure. A shut-off valve in each pipe can be closed to stop gas flow to an individual appliance. An appliance connector is the final segment in the gas piping system. This specially designed flexible tube—typically 2 or 3 feet long—carries gas from a pipe to the back of an appliance.

What Should I Do if I Smell Gas?

Try to assess the severity of the gas leak. Have you been smelling this leak for an extended period of time? Is it a strong smell or a faint odor? Can you hear gas escaping? If you suddenly smell a strong odor of gas or hear propane leaking, or if you believe that a fire or explosion is eminent, these are some precautions to consider:


Immediately put out all smoking materials and other open flames. Do not operate lights, appliances, telephones, or cell phones. Flames or sparks from these sources can trigger an explosion or a fire.


Get everyone out of the building or area where you suspect gas is leaking.


Turn off the main gas supply valve on your propane tank if it is safe to do so. To close the valve, turn it to the right (clockwise).


From a neighbor’s home or other nearby building away from the gas leak, call Home Gas right away. If you can’t reach your propane retailer, call 911 or your local fire department.


until your propane retailer, emergency responder, or qualified service technician determines that it is safe to do so.


Before you attempt to use any of your propane appliances, Home Gas or a qualified service technician must check your entire system to ensure that it is leak-free.

What Happens if You Run Out of Gas?

It is important to establish guidelines when your account is set up that prevent you from running out of gas. Home Gas makes every effort to ensure that you will have an uninterrupted flow of gas with little-to-no interruption.

If an appliance valve or a gas line is left open when the propane supply runs out, a leak could occur when the system is recharged with propane. For this reason, it is never a good idea to leave an open flame unattended.

If your propane tank runs out of gas, any pilot lights on your appliances will go out. Always ensure that pilot lights are relit after a gas outage.

SET UP REGULAR DELIVERY. Establish a regular delivery schedule with Home Gas. Also, periodically check the fuel gauge on your propane tank. If the fuel level drops below 20%, give us a call.

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