Propane Safety Information
Propane, also known as liquefied petroleum gas (LP-gas), is one of the nation’s most versatile sources of energy. It is normally compressed & stored as a liquid. It is nontoxic, colorless, and virtually odorless; an identifying odor is added so it can be detected. Propane is most commonly used for heating, water heating and cooking. It’s also used as a fuel in forklifts, mowers, generators, and irrigation engines.
Propane is abundant and priced competitively compared with electricity, heating oil, and other fuels. Not to mention, propane powered appliances are energy efficient which helps you save money on annual energy costs. Because propane is one of the lightest, simplest hydrocarbons in existence, it is also one of the cleanest burning of all fossil fuels. Propane is an approved, clean fuel listed in the 1990 Clean Air Act as well as the National Energy Policy Act of 1992. Propane has always been a “green” fuel.
Frequently Asked Questions
Propane smells like rotten eggs, a skunk’s spray, or a dead animal. Propane manufacturers add this smell to help alert customers to propane leaks. Make sure everyone in your family can recognize the smell of propane.
At Polar Gas the safety of our customers, employees, and members of the communities we serve is our top priority. If you smell gas inside or outside of your home:
- NO FLAMES OR SPARKS. Immediately put out all smoking materials and other open flames. Do not operate lights, appliances, telephones, or cell phones. Flames or sparks from these sources can trigger an explosion or a fire.
- LEAVE THE AREA IMMEDIATELY. Get everyone out of the building or area where you suspect gas is leaking.
- SHUT OFF THE GAS. Turn off the main gas supply valve on your propane tank, 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 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 it 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.
Services & Tank Information:
We provide reliable propane delivery service to homes and businesses throughout the Colorado Front Range. Please view our Locations page, or call our office to see if we service your area. In addition to propane delivery services, we offer propane system installation for both new construction and existing tank swap outs, maintenance, and propane safety/leak checks. We do not service or repair appliances or provide any services inside the home or business (outside only). Our office is staffed to take your phone calls and answer your questions. We also offer online account management.
- Send us a Message online, or call the office. A Polar Gas representative will be in touch to discuss the details of your request.
- Submit the forms in our New Customer Packet via email, fax or mail.
For New Installations:
We will perform a site survey at your location and help you choose the best location to place your tank. We will schedule a time and complete the tank installation (including installing lines, regulators and shut-offs). Then we will perform a Propane Safety Check to ensure everything is safe and running as it should. This process takes approximately two hours.
For Tank Switch Outs:
We will schedule a time to set our tank in place of your current tank that is owned by another company. We will respectfully set their tank aside, in area that is out of the way, but accessible for pick up. We will hook everything back up and get your system running again. We will then perform a Propane Safety Check to make sure everything is safe and running as it should. This process typically takes less than two hours.
For Customer Owned tanks:
If you own your propane tank, it’s easy to switch to Polar Gas. We require a Propane Safety Check prior to your initial fill. During this process we document all of your propane appliances and check the integrity of your system. This takes approximately 30 minutes and requires the homeowner to be home.
The State of Colorado requires that any time there is an “interruption of service” a test for leakage must be performed. Running out of gas IS an interruption of service and the Company MUST perform a test for leakage, i.e. “Propane Safety Check” or "Leak Test".
A Propane Safety Check will also be required whenever any of the following conditions occurs:
- An initial safety check will always be performed for new installations.
- On piping systems that have been in place and previously used, but are new to Polar Gas, whether or not there has been an interruption of service. Examples include propane systems with customer-owned tanks and situations where we swap our tank out with a competitor’s tank.
- When a section of piping is added, replaced or repaired unless otherwise isolated by installing a shut-off valve or disconnecting the gas piping. Or, when a regulator or appliance has been replaced or added.
- When a customer requests a safety check because of a possible gas odor or excessive usage.
- All out-of-gas deliveries: A system is considered to be out of gas when the gas pressure in the system will no longer support the appliances and pilots.
Because a Propane Safety Check requires a service call with a technician, charges may apply.
A Propane Safety Check is required prior to your initial fill from Polar Gas. We are not familiar with your system and we want to make sure that it is safe and running properly. During this process, we document all of your propane appliances and check the integrity of your system.
Your tank gauge is located on the top of the tank, usually under a lid or hood which can be lifted up to view the gauge. Look for a gauge dial with numbers from 5 to 95. The numbers indicate the percentage of propane in the tank. When the level reaches to 30%, please call the office or schedule a delivery online.
If you are a Will-Call, or call ahead customer, you should request a delivery when your tank reaches 30% to allow ample time for a delivery. If an emergency or expedited delivery is required, additional fees may apply. You can request a delivery online or by calling the office. If you are Auto-Fill, we will automatically fill your tank on route. We ask that you still keep an eye on your tank percentage and call us if the tank gets below 30%.
Auto-Fill is a service where we estimate your tank level and automatically schedule your deliveries. We forecast your demand based on the weather and your appliances. A credit approval is required for this service.
As a Will-Call customer, you must monitor the level of propane in your tank and call to schedule a delivery when the percentage reaches no lower than 30%. This will allow time for scheduling to avoid running out of gas.
For safety, propane containers are only filled to 80% of their capacity. The 80% fill rule is a preventative safety measure against fluctuations that happen inside a tank. Propane, like water, will expand when heat is added to it. Propane, however, will increase in volume nearly 17 times greater than water over the same temperature increase. Filling the tank to only 80% allows for extra space in the tank to allow for this expansion.
In many cases propane gas lines run underground between your propane storage tank and your house or business. That’s why it is important for you to know exactly where your gas lines are located and to avoid digging in that area. Please visit: http://www.colorado811.org/ BEFORE YOU DIG, or dial 811 from your telephone.
In general, you should pick a light, reflective color. Do NOT pick a dark color. Dark colors retain heat. Heat can cause excess pressure to build in the tank, causing the relief valve to discharge. Also, be sure that you do not paint tank valves, caps, regulators or data plates.
No. The emergency valve for shutting off the entire system is located under the dome cover. Dome covers should NEVER be locked. They are designed simply to protect various valves and fittings from the elements.
Installation of an underground propane tank is a job only for trained installation technicians. Underground tank installations require a special tank made to be buried. Please contact our office for more details.
We recommend that a carbon monoxide (CO) detector listed by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) be installed on every level of your home. Be sure to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding installation, location and maintenance.
Propane gas detectors provide an additional measure of security. We recommend that you consider installing one or more propane gas detectors listed by UL in your home. Again, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding installation, location and maintenance.
Yes! Log into your account here, or sign up to create a login. You can pay bills, view account transactions and order propane online at your convenience.
Cathodic protection, which is corrosion protection, is required for all underground tanks. This helps keep the tank from deteriorating and preserves the integrity of the tank surface. Corrosion protection systems consist of a special coating on the underground tank and a placement of an anode system. An anode bag is attached by wire to the tank and placed in the hole with the tank before it is covered with backfill. This sacrificial anode bag absorbs the electrical currents in the earth that would have ordinarily targeted the tank resulting in damage to the container. In short, the anode bag will act as a “decoy” for the damaging currents that can harm a tank in an underground environment. After install, a cathodic check should be done to make sure the anode system is working. Then, a verification cathodic check should be done at approximately 12-18 months after the initial testing was done. If the initial test and verification test are successful, the system should be checked every 3 years.
Snow or ice accumulation can potentially cause parts of your propane system to crack or break, resulting in a gas leak. It is beneficial to make sure that all propane pipes, valves, regulators, and tanks are clear of snow and ice. The regulator vent area needs to be free from accumulated snow. Gently brush away snow or ice that has accumulated around the tank, meter, regulator, and any other piping.
When installing systems in a heavy snowfall area, some installation considerations can include:
- Locating above ground piping, regulators and meters above snow levels.
- Locating above ground piping, regulators and meters on the gable ends of buildings.
- Adding support to above ground piping, regulators and meters or securing them to the structure to withstand snow and ice load.
- Installing dedicated snow load covers for regulators.
- Locating above ground piping, regulators and meters in an elevated and protected location under extended roof hangs and eaves.