Propane Companies Respond To The COVID-19 Crisis
As we all deal with the threat from COVID-19 (Coronavirus), Iowa propane companies are working hard every day to provide safe service to their customers.
Per the advice of health officials, your propane provider may have changed operating hours or procedures for such tasks as tank and cylinder filling, service, installations and customer payments.
Please keep in mind that your propane provider may need extra time to respond or make deliveries. If you normally call for deliveries, we recommend that you discuss your situation with your supplier. These are trying times for all of us, but propane companies here in Iowa—and across the country—remain united in responding to the needs of their customers.
If you have questions or concerns about deliveries or service, please reach out to your local propane provider.
Consumer safety tips for propane
With health and safety the major concerns today, we thought it would be timely to share some safety reminders as you hunker down in your propane home.
If you smell gas, here’s what to do—and what not to do
In order to alert homeowners of a gas leak, manufacturers add an odor to propane. The smell, comparable to a skunk’s spray, rotten eggs or a dead animal, is sure to catch your attention.
It’s important that everyone in the home can recognize the smell. However, if you are concerned that you or others in your home may not be able to identify this smell, you will want to install one or more propane gas detectors.
If you smell propane at home or at work, here’s what to do:
- DO attempt to shut off the valves at the tank if you feel it is safe to do so.
- DO make sure everyone leaves the home and gets away from nearby areas.
- DO place a call to your propane supplier and to the fire department. (Make this call off the premises.)
And here’s what not to do:
- DO NOT use a phone from inside the home or in nearby areas. Leave the area to make your call.
- DO NOT light matches anywhere inside or near the home.
- DO NOT try to repair your appliance or relight the pilot.
- DO NOT try to locate the leak.
- DO NOT use light switches inside the home.
- DO NOT return to the building or area until you have received instructions from responders to do so.
Other tips for staying safe in your Iowa home
- install carbon monoxide (CO) detectors on each level of your home.
- be sure to follow manufacturer’s recommendations for placement and maintenance.
- perform an annual battery test for your CO detectors. (Do this for your smoke detectors too).
- replace batteries at the beginning of each heating season. Make a note to fully replace the unit every five or 10 years, depending on the unit you have.
- for those with a propane backup generator, check that you have enough fuel to last for a week or more if a power outage occurs. Run the generator once in a while to check that it is operating properly. This will also help maintain lubrication on critical moving parts.
Dealing with storms or other weather emergencies
- be sure to adhere to any local instructions from the authorities regarding evacuations and shelter-in-place emergencies.
- do not attempt to operate propane equipment if you suspect that it has been damaged or is not working properly. Instead, set up a repair to take place as soon as possible
- after a storm, clear debris from vents, chimneys and flues after a storm to prevent a dangerous buildup of carbon monoxide. Maintain a cleared path to your propane tank. This will ensure efficient deliveries.
- reminder: safety codes require you to call in a licensed professional to restart your system if your gas supply is shut down for any reason.
Get more safety tips here and then contact your propane company if you have any questions or concerns. Stay safe!