Charter Fuels Offers Homeowners Wintertime Propane Safety Tips
LANCASTER, Wis. – December 20, 2011 – With temperatures dropping across the country and energy bills rising, more homeowners are turning to alternative options like propane for their heating needs. Propane is a cost-effective clean energy source, but these savings can be easily canceled out for those who aren’t properly prepared for winter weather.
Doug Pink, president of Midwest energy leader Charter Fuels, says it’s more important than ever during the harsh winter months for homeowners to be up to speed on propane safety.
“We all know that wintertime can bring rough and unpredictable weather, especially for those of us in the Midwest,” says Pink. “Propane is an affordable and safe way to keep your home warm, but homeowners should be knowledgeable about the proper care and maintenance of propane appliances to avoid any accidents during a winter storm.”
First and foremost, says Pink, your propane system should be inspected periodically by a trained professional to make sure it’s running efficiently and safely.
“Before a winter storm hits, make sure your family knows how to detect a propane leak—it smells a little like rotten eggs or a skunk’s spray,” says Pink. “You should also be aware of how and where to turn off the propane supply to your home. If you ever suspect a propane leak, send everyone outside immediately, turn off the gas supply and contact your propane provider right away.”
Here are a few simple propane safety tips to prepare for a winter storm:
- Flag your propane tank with a stake higher than the average snow depth.
- Ensure your propane tank is adequately filled, in case roads are blocked in the aftermath of a storm.
- Create instructions for how to correctly turn off the propane, and even the electricity and water.
- To prevent carbon monoxide hazards, never utilize outdoor propane appliances, gas ovens or range-top burners for indoor space heating.
To ensure your family’s safety after a winter storm:
- Use a broom to remove any snow or ice from around your propane tank and all outdoor vents.
- Check the propane tank regulator to make sure there's no dripping or ice buildup.
- Look for downed trees and power lines or damaged propane equipment, and report problems immediately.
- If it’s dark when returning to your residence after a storm, use flashlights instead of candles.
- Do not attempt to modify or repair appliance parts—always wait for a propane service technician.
- Clear your driveway of snow and ice so any emergency or service trucks can easily reach you.
About Charter Fuels
Family owned and operated for four generations, Charter Fuels has provided the communities it serves with reliable warmth, expert energy solutions and greater peace of mind for more than 86 years. It has offices servicing 46 counties across Wisconsin, upper Michigan, northern Illinois, eastern Iowa and eastern Minnesota. Charter Fuels is active in the local community, donating profits from its pink propane delivery truck in conjunction with the American Breast Cancer Foundation’s “Pink-Ribbon” campaign. As a partner in the national Alliance AutoGas program, Charter supplies clean-burning propane autogas to Midwest fleets. Visit www.charterfuels.com for more information.