Frequently Asked Questions
Click on any of the links below for detailed information.
|• Propane Gas||• Fuel Oil||• Air Conditioning|
|• Service||• Carbon Monoxide|
Is propane really convenient to use and store?
Yes. Propane tanks are environmentally friendly, require little maintenance, and can last indefinitely. Propane’s portability in liquid form makes it a convenient fuel for grilling, camping, and other uses.
Is propane gas clean and efficient?
Yes. 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. In addition, propane equipment and appliances have a shorter energy savings payback period.
Will my propane fueled equipment require routine service?
Yes. All propane fueled equipment needs to 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 propane safe for my family?
Yes. Propane is used safely by millions of Americans — and stored, handled, and transported by thousands of professionals — every day. That safety comes from a combination of stringent codes and regulations and our industry’s extensive training and safety awareness programs.
How can I recognize a propane leak in my home?
Propane has a strong, unpleasant smell, like rotten eggs, a skunk’s spray, or a dead animal. Propane manufacturers add the smell deliberately to help alert customers to propane leaks, which can create a safety hazard. You can ask your propane retailer for a demonstration to help everyone in your home or building identify leaks.
What should I do if my pilot light goes out?
Give the office a call so we can have a trained propane service technician evaluate the appliance and relight the pilot light. A pilot light that repeatedly goes out — or is difficult to light — may be signaling that there is a problem with the appliance or your propane system. Accidents and serious injuries can occur when customers attempt to fix a pilot light problem on their own.
Are there alternatives to having a propane tank in my yard?
Yes. Underground storage tanks are a popular option for single-family homes and housing developments. These large tanks can be buried underground because propane is a nontoxic fuel that doesn’t contaminate aquifers or soil.
If I use propane as my primary energy source, what size storage tank do I need?
Generally, a 500-gallon tank can hold enough propane to meet the annual energy needs of an average four-bedroom home. Tanks of 1,000 gallons or more may be needed for large homes with swimming pools and hot tubs.
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.
For Fireplace use, how long with Propane last in my tank?
The size of the fireplace and the number of hours you use it every day will dictate the overall useage.
Is Fuel Oil Heat Economical?
Yes, today’s oil fueled-heating systems are incredibly more efficient than ever before.
Is Fuel Oil Heat Safe?
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 can 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 is air conditioning 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.
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.
How long should my air conditioner last?
That mostly depends on the owner. Without proper maintenance, the life expectancy of the unit rapidly declines. In addition, newer air conditioner models have a more sophisticated construction, and as a result, last longer. So, a modern, well-maintained air conditioner has the potential to last upwards of twenty-five years. While at the same time, a poorly or unmaintained air conditioner will probably only last around ten. It’s all about being proactive instead of reactive.
What does SEER mean?
SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. It is calculated by dividing the typical cooling output of an average season by the total energy input during the same amount of time. The important thing to understand about SEER ratings is that a higher rating equates to a more efficient system.
What does EER mean?
The EER, or Energy Efficiency Ratio of a cooling system, indicates how effectively the air conditioner will operate at a specific temperature (usually at 95 degrees). Once again, the higher the rating, the more efficient the system.
What is the difference between EER and SEER?
The SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) measures how efficiently a unit will operate over the course of an entire season as opposed to under specific circumstances like temperature.
What is a BTU?
BTU stands for British Thermal Unit, it equates to the amount of heat and energy required to raise the temperature of one pound of water one degree Fahrenheit. In terms of HVAC, a 10,000 BTU air conditioner is capable of removing 10,000 BTU’s of heat per hour.
What is HSPF?
Once again, the important thing to note is that a higher score on the HSPF scale yields a more efficient Heat Pump. Specifically, HSPF measures a heat pump’s estimated heating output for the Spring and Fall.
What efficiency should my air conditioner be?
In short, your air conditioner should be as efficient as possible. We recommend at least a 16 SEER unit. The money you “save” on up-front pricing will be negated by higher operating costs within a few years, and throughout the life of an air conditioner, the lower SEER models will actually end up costing you more.
Do You Offer Service Contracts?
Yes. Contact our office for details and to discuss the options best suited for your needs,
or visit our Service Plan page for additional information.
How Often Should My Heating System be Serviced?
We highly recommended that heating systems be cleaned and serviced annually to ensure efficiency and reliability.
Can I Troubleshoot My Furnace Before Calling for a Technician?
Yes. If your burner does not run follow the suggestions below.
- Check the thermostat to be sure it’s set in “heat mode”. The temperature might be set too low. Turn the thermostat five degrees higher than usual.
- Check the Emergency Switch to be sure it is on.
- 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 – make sure you have oil in your tank.
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 a problem. Do not attempt to troubleshoot or fix on your own. Call our office to arrange for a Service Technician to come to your home.
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).
What do I do if My Carbon Monoxide Alarm Sounds?
Contact your local Fire Department and evacuate your home.