Frequently Asked Questions
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• Fuel Oil
What Influences Propane Prices?
Propane prices are subject to a number of influences, some are common to all petroleum products,
and others unique to propane. Because propane is easily transported, it can serve many different markets, from fueling barbecue grills to producing petrochemicals. The price of propane in these markets is influenced by many factors, including the prices of competing fuels in each market, the distance propane has to travel to reach a customer; and the volumes used by a customer.
Is Propane Gas Clean and Efficient?
Yes. Propane is both clean and efficient. Propane has long been recognized as the “green” energy. By using this energy, homeowners can help cut emissions and protect the environment. Propane,
on average, costs about half as much per BTU as electricity. It burns hotter and more evenly than many other fuels. Also, propane appliances have a shorter energy savings payback period than other types of appliances.
Is Propane Safe?
Propane has a remarkable safety record, due in large part to the stringent codes and regulations developed by the propane industry and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).
What Has the Industry Done to Safeguard Propane Use?
GAS Check® (Gas Appliance System Check) is an award-winning preventive maintenance program developed by the National Propane Gas Association (NPGA) and funded by the Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) that provides training for technicians, and educates homeowners on the safe handling of propane and the maintenance of propane appliances.
The Certified Employee Training Program (CETP) developed by NPGA and funded by PERC is a training program used extensively throughout the country by people involved in the handling of propane, equipment and appliances.
May Propane Tanks be Buried?
Since propane is environmentally friendly, most towns and municipalities allow underground tanks.
What Size Tank Do I Need?
The size tank that you need depends on your total BTU load. For example, a gas range could use just a 50-gallon tank, while a home with central heating, hot water, gas range and dryer could use up to a 1,000-gallon tank.
How Much Does it Cost to Have Propane Gas Installed at My Home?
Propane gas installation prices vary depending on what needs to be completed at the home as well as what size tank will be needed. Please call our office for information on all propane pricing.
How Close Can a Propane Tank Be Placed to My Home?
There are numerous regulations on tank placement depending on where you live.
How Do I Read the Gauge on My Propane Tank?
Most tanks of 47 gallon capacity or higher have a gauge. If your tank does have a gauge it will be located on the top of the tank, under the lift able hood. The tank gauge reads in percentages from 0% to 100% with 85% being full to allow for gas expansion.
How Long Will a Propane Tank Last for My Fireplace?
The size of the fireplace and the number of hours you use it every day will dictate the overall life of the tank. On average, you should get 300 to 400 hours of operational time from a 100-gallon tank.
Will My Propane Fueled Appliances Require Routine Service?
Manufacturers recommend that gas-burning heaters, furnaces, and boilers have an annual maintenance and safety check. We recommend that you schedule service during the summer, when demand on your system is likely to be minimal.
Is Fuel Oil Heat Economical?
Yes, today’s oil fueled-heating systems are incredibly more efficient than ever before.
Is Fuel Oil Heat Safe?
Unlike gaseous fuels, fuel oil will not support combustion (flame) unless the temperature is about 140 degrees Fahrenheit. There are not enough fuel vapors to cause an explosion or fire.
Why Should I Heat My House With Fuel Oil?
Home heating with fuel oil is clean burning. Modern oil fueled-heating systems produce negligible amounts of smoke and soot, and exceed a 90% efficiency rating. Fuel oil heating equipment innovations have been revolutionizing fuel oil heat technology.
Is it True That I Will Save Lots of Money by Switching From Fuel Oil to Natural Gas?
No. In most cases the cost of getting the line to your home, the upgrade or replacement of your equipment and the loss of BTU's with natural gas can exceed $10,000.
Is it True My Annual Savings on Fuel Oil Gallons Consumed Could be Reduced by as Much 25% by Upgrading to New Efficient Equipment?
Yes. If your equipment is 20 years old or more, by upgrading to new efficient equipment you can reduce the gallons purchased by up to 25%.
How are Air Conditioners Typically Sized to Meet the Cooling Needs for a Home?
Your comfort while using air conditioning depends both on reducing air temperature and removing humidity. An air conditioner should ideally run for 20 minutes or more on each cycle to cool the indoor air and to reduce humidity.
Oversized air conditioners run in short inefficient cycles. They waste energy since they must run for a few minutes at the beginning of every cycle just to cool down the indoor coil and ducts. Only then can they can cool and de-humidify your home. That original cool-down energy is wasted after the air conditioner shuts off.
What is Meant by “BTU” and “Ton?”
An air conditioner's ability to remove heat is expressed in BTUs (British Thermal Units) per hour, or "tons" of cooling. Each ton equals 12,000 BTUs per hour, and is equal to the energy contained in a ton of ice, a term left over from the days when buildings were cooled with ice. Your air conditioner should have a ton of cooling capacity for every 400 to 1,000 square feet of floor area, depending on your home's energy efficiency and your local climate.
How Does Insulation Affect My Cooling Needs?
A poorly shaded home with little insulation and lots of air leaks might need a ton of air conditioning for every 400 square feet of floor area. Well insulated and well-shaded homes with few air leaks might only need one ton per 1000 square feet.
Do You Offer Service Contracts?
Yes. Contact our office for details and to discuss the options best suited for your needs.
How Often Should My Heating System be Cleaned?
If is highly recommended that heating systems be cleaned and serviced annually to ensure efficiency and reliability.
Is There Anything I Can do to Troubleshoot My Furnace Before Calling for a Technician?
Yes. If your burner does not run follow the suggestions below.
- Check the thermostat. The temperature might be set too low. Turn the thermostat five degrees higher than usual.
- Check the main switch and make sure it is not turned off.
- Check to see if the circuit breaker or fuse is blown.
- Unit might be off on safety. Press the reset button ONE time.
What Should be Done if My Chimney Smokes?
A cold chimney flue can cause this when the unit first fires; however, if it persists this can indicate incomplete combustion or another problem. Do not attempt to troubleshoot or fix on your own. Call our office to arrange for a service.
Carbon Monoxide Information
Can My Heating System produce Carbon Monoxide?
Yes. Carbon Monoxide is a natural byproduct of combustion. During normal combustion, each atom of carbon in the burning fuel joins with two atoms of oxygen, forming a harmless gas called carbon dioxide (CO2). When there is a lack of oxygen to ensure complete combustion of the fuel, each atom of carbon links up with only one atom of oxygen, forming carbon monoxide (CO) gas,
a colorless, odorless and toxic gas. Any fuel-burning appliance that is not adequately vented
and maintained can be a potential source of carbon monoxide (CO).
The most important safeguard against CO risks is a properly working carbon monoxide
detector. Battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors are relatively inexpensive and easy
to install. They may be purchased at almost any store that sells home supplies.
What do I do if My Carbon Monoxide Alarm Sounds?
Contact your local Fire Department and evacuate your home.