Understanding a Propane-Powered Lifestyle

Apr 02, 2021
Are you considering the purchase of a propane powered home, appliance, or workspace? Have you recently purchased a property but are new to the propane process? Moving into a new home or shop can be overwhelming. If you are new to it, having a propane-powered lifestyle shouldn’t be something that causes you to lose sleep. Here is what you need to know to get yourself on the right track:
  • Propane is an odorless and colorless gas. Since you can’t see or smell propane in its natural state, manufacturers and retailers add a rotten egg smell to propane for easy detection in the event of a leak.
  • Like water, propane expands when it’s hot and contracts in the cold. To safely account for this expansion, it is recommended that propane tanks are only filled to about 80-85 percent capacity.
  • Propane doesn’t spoil. If it’s stored properly, no matter how long it sits in your tank or propane-powered generator, it will always be there for you when you need it.

If you’re purchasing a property that’s powered by propane, the following tips can help you get more out of this efficient fuel source.
  • Do you own the tank? If the tank on your property was leased by the previous homeowners, that is a leased tank, you do NOT own it. If a customer leases a tank from a company, by law no other company can fill that tank. The only company that can fill a leased tank is the company that owns it. In the home buying process, it is important to verify who the tank is owned by. This leased versus customer-owned practice is standard in the industry.
  • Consider money-saving options. Generally, filling your tank in the summer in preparation for the winter will be less expensive because the fuel is in lower demand. To help manage your utility budget, ask about contracting options. This helps control expenses and guarantees yourself supply when propane is in higher demand.
  • Investing in propane appliances. Propane appliances offer higher efficiency, less maintenance and, in many cases, greater convenience over electric options. Whether you’re exploring a propane-powered dryer, water heater or a new gas range, it’s best to hire a professional for installation. A contractor will be up to date with the newest technology and will be able to troubleshoot on the spot for any leaks or other issues. Safety should always come first. Always call to schedule a required leak check after home closing and when adding appliances to the propane supply onsite.

Once set up, your propane-powered home should run seamlessly — with the added bonus of better efficiency and clean-burning energy.
  • Care of your tank. General maintenance of the tank is the responsibility of the tank and homeowner. Regulator upgrades are strongly recommended every 15 years. Additional leak checks should be done on the setup as often as possible. Keeping the area around your tank clean and clear of any tree branches or debris will also help with keeping your tank safe during a storm and easily accessible for our driver and maintenance technicians at any time.
  • Reading your tank gauge. It is important to check your tank gauge on a weekly basis to monitor how much propane you are using. If you are on “Scheduled” delivery, your tank will automatically be filled to 80-85% on your delivery day. If your account is notated on “Will Call” status, you will be required to call in for a fill when the tank gets between 20-30%. It is important to call in with a two-day call-in notice prior to your assigned delivery day.

With the right setup, a propane tank can take care of itself with little maintenance or energy from you. Having United Cooperative as your provider and exploring our programs, propane becomes an even more reliable and affordable option. For questions regarding a propane set-up on the property you have or are considering a purchase of a propane-powered set-up, please contact United Cooperative with questions at 1-800-924-2991.

Joseta Halbur

Energy Sales Specialist | Eastern Region


David Cramer

Filed Under: EnergyPropane