Archive for Safety

Outdoor Summer Safety Starts in Sping

Despite winter taking its time getting on its merry way, Spring is indeed here and hot days and warm Summer nights are not too far off on the horizon. What a welcome thought! Here at Styer Propane, there is no question that things around here do tend to quiet down this time of year until the beginning of Fall. That said, we are still plenty busy with new installations and helping folks out who need propane through the Summer months.

Who needs propane through the Summer? Well, lots of folks as a matter of fact. Certainly homes are still running appliances like stoves and dryers on propane year round. But, there are far more fun applications that our customers have going all throughout the Summer Season. This time of year means picnics and barbecues. We have a good number of customers who have outdoor kitchens and built-in grills on their property which run propane off of a rutted line. And after you’ve had that burger (and waited 45 minutes), what’s better than a dip in the pool? Sure enough, we also have several accounts who also run pool heat off of propane. After you are dried off from the pool, why not spend some time over by the outdoor fire pit which runs off — Yup — Propane!

We enjoy Summer more than anyone, because, well, there is not much room for us to take any time off in the Winter! And though we stress safety throughout the year, we would like to remind folks that now is the time to make sure that there has been no damage to propane lines that run to outdoor usage. It’s best to have a professional run through a safety check in advance of the season so that you can ensure safe operation all Summer long! And whether you have your propane coming to your grill from an underground tank or your BBQ on a traditional grill, we urge all of our home chefs out there to be safe this Spring and Summer in the backyard!

Add 9 Volt Batteries to the Grocery List

There is never a bad time to think about safety in your home. Fire departments around the country and in our area have done a great job making a connection between Daylight Savings and the checking of smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors over the last several years. Not all models run on the trusty 9-volt battery, of course, but with Spring Forward coming up in mid March, it is a good time of year to test all alarms, and smoke or carbon monoxide detectors in the home. Furthermore, it is a good opportunity to review your family’s fire escape plan with one another and even practice a few times. Finally, you will want to make sure any fire extinguishers are in proper working order. An emergency is not the best time to find out that your fire suppression equipment is not functional.

Very soon, we will be saying goodbye to what is left of winter and it will be time to enjoy more time outside with our friends and family. Remember that fire safety is not just for inside the home. For those of you who grill, barbecue and even fry food outdoors, it is important to know that there are important safety measures which apply to outdoor cooking as well!

All of us here at Styer Propane take a safety-first mentality as it relates to our clients and want you to know that we are always here for your safety questions regarding propane energy.

Safety First If You Smell Gas

We preach safety a good deal in our business because frankly, we have to. Our business and the industry at large takes a tremendous amount of time and energy to ensure that our employees and customers are safe in their handling, transportation and use of propane. Propane in its normal state is actually odorless. An odorant, ethyl mercaptan is added so that folks know if there is a leak. The smell of this additive has become synonymous with the smell of propane, and that is desired intent.

When you smell gas, the first thing you need to know is do not cause any sparks or attempt to create an open flame. It is best to leave the area immediately. If it is safe to do so, shut off the main valve on the tank. If it is not safe, simply leave the area and call our office and/or the fire department. Do your best to keep others away from the area until the situation has been resolved. Going forward, be sure to get your system check and maintained in regular recommended intervals.

If you have any questions about propane safety, ask a Styer Propane professional and he or she will be happy to assist you in addressing your query.

Important Safety Rules for Propane Gas

At Styer Propane, we have been providing propane to homes and businesses across the Delaware Valley for over 20 years. In that time, we have made it our number one goal to provide comprehensive safety information to our customers via print and online materials as well. For those who use propane as a source of energy for their home or business, it is important that you are familiar with the smell of propane gas and that you know what to do if you smell gas in the building. Do you?

Here are some important safety tips for what to do in a situation where you smell propane gas:

  • Avoid Open Flames and Sparks – Immediately put out all smoking materials and other open flames. Do no operate lights, appliances, telephones, or cell phones. Flames or sparks from these sources can trigger an explosion or a fire.
  • Evacuate the Area – Get everyone out of the building or area where you suspect gas is leaking.
  • Shut Off the Propane –  Turn off the main gas supply valve on your propane take if it is safe to do so. To close the valve, turn it to the right (clockwise).
  • Report the Leak. From a neighbor’s home or other nearby building away from the gas leak, call your propane retailer right away. If you can’t reach your propane retailer, call 911 or your local fire department. Do Not Return to the Building or Area until your propane retailer determines that is safe to do so.
  • Get Your System Checked. Before you attempt to use any of your propane appliances, your propane retailer or a qualified service technician must check your entire system to ensure that it is leak-free.

Safety is Key When Operating Outdoor Kitchens and Pool Heaters

There are literally millions of homes nationwide that run propane or natural gas lines to outdoor equipment used for recreation and cooking such as pool heaters, outdoor stoves, kitchens and even fireplaces. Having these features in our backyards is wonderful for spending time with family and friends. They also add tremendous value to a property when it comes time to sell.

This time of the year, we recommend that homeowners have their lines and systems checked by  a professional prior to seasonal use. The lines that run from tanks to equipment can get compromised over the winter months, so it is important that a qualified trained technician check these lines for leaks and blockages so that homeowners can operate pools, grills and fireplaces in a safe manner all spring and summer long. Propane is a wonderful energy source for any home. As with all forms of energy, there are risks if safety guidelines are not followed properly. We wish everyone a happy and safe spring and summer season and invite you to call our offices if you have any questions about using propane properly throughout the year.

Reminder to Will Call Customers

At Styer Propane, we do our best to accommodate all sorts of customers who have differing propane needs based on usage and budget.

For most of our customers, we offer automatic delivery. Our office has a number of comprehensive programs that factor into account the size of your tank(s), the size of your home, the number of appliances you have which run off of propane and even the outside temperature over time (degree days). Using this data and more, our program is able to estimate the volume of all of the tanks for all of our customers every day. When a customer gets to a certain estimated volume, a delivery order is created and that customer receives a deliver within a few days.

For those customers on will-call, please remember to call us for an order when your tank is at 30%. We say this because, especially during times of high volume, it can take us several days to get to all of our customers. If it is snowy and icy outside and we have a backlog of orders, it would not be good if you waited until your tank got to 10 or 5 percent before placing an order. Doing so could create a risk of you and your family running out of propane.

If you have any questions about your plan or our policies, please do not hesitate to call our office to speak to a Styer professional anytime.

Winter Weather and Your Propane Service

As colder temps and the promise of winter weather draws near, we ask that you help us at Styer Propane ensure timely deliveries of your propane this winter. When winter weather strikes, we would appreciate your taking the time to clear driveways and tanks free of snow. We would also appreciate your help in marking the tank location in advance of coming winter weather if you are scheduled for a delivery. Remember, if our drivers cannot access your tank, we will not be able to keep you warm when temperatures become cold.

All of us at Styer Propane thank you in advance for your cooperation!

Maintenance of Your Heating System is a Must

As we move into November, most of our friends in Chester County, Berks County, Montgomery County and beyond have already had to turn on the heat a few times so far this fall. Several nights these past few weeks in October have been downright chilly! At Styer Propane, we promise to do our best to serve your propane needs all winter long, but we also recommend that you have a qualified heating and cooling technician who maintains your heating system prior to the start of Fall and Winter. Many HVAC companies have maintenance programs which offer customers a savings but you can choose a path that is best for your home and your family’s budget. The most important piece is that you are operating your system in a safe and effective manner. A trained heating and cooling specialist will check your furnace, boiler and other equipment to make sure it is operating in a safe and effective manner and may make recommendations based on equipment age and performance. Not every winter is a bear, but it will get cold enough for you to make sure that your system is running safely. If you have any questions about the safety of your system, call a qualified heating company today.

Grilling Season is Upon Us

If you are like we are, you fire up the grill on the first warm Saturday or Sunday in springtime. What’s better than a backyard picnic with the smell of meat cooking on the grill. If you are grilling with propane this spring and summer, we invite you to review some simple tips which will provide you with safe grilling all season long.

Checking for Leaks

After a long period of sitting idle, such as through the winter season, a grill and its propane tank and hose should be checked for leaks. You should also check for leaks each time you change out a new propane cylinder.

  • Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose using a brush or spray bottle.
  • Turn the propane tank on. If there is a gas leak, the propane will release bubbles around the hose.
  • If there are no bubbles, your grill is safe to use.

Getting Started

  • Don’t ask the propane supplier to overfill the cylinder. A 20 pound cylinder should be filled only to 80% of its capacity, leaving room for expansion.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s procedures for lighting, cleaning and maintaining your grill.
  • When lighting a gas grill, always keep the lid open to prevent a flash off from gas build-up.
  • Do not lean over the grill when igniting the burners or cooking.

Good Grilling

  • Be present when grilling. Do not leave an active grill unattended.
  • Never use a propane cylinder if it shows signs of dents, gouges, bulges, fire damage, excessive rust or other forms of visual external damage.

A Reminder Regarding Snow

This past weekend’s blizzard was certainly one for the record books in and around Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Berks Counties. So far this week, we have had the pleasure of serving a number of folks who were able to get their driveways shoveled and plowed out. Many of these customers even cleared off the top of their propane tanks and shoveled a pathway for our drivers to walk easily from our trucks. A big thanks to all. We have also had a small number of instances where driveways had yet to be cleared and access to the tank was limited at best. We would like to remind folks as long as there is still snow on the ground (and a few months remaining in winter) that our drivers need a clear driveway so that we can deliver propane. Also it is greatly appreciated if you can clear the tops of tanks and shovel a pathway so that our delivery staff can make it safely from the truck to your tank and back.