Use this Propane Service Guide to Help You Select the Right Company
Fall is here and it’s to start thinking about heating your home. If you’re looking to switch L/P companies or finding a company for the first time here are 10 questions to ask before making your decision.
It doesn’t matter if you are going to get one delivery or 10 deliveries a year. You want to know that you are in good hands. If you call when your tank is low, a company should be able to deliver within 2-3 business under normal working conditions. Ask the company representative how long the typical time is for will-call deliveries. If you are automatic what is the company policy on runouts? How long will you wait for your delivery?
Ask if there is a 24-hour emergency service. If there is an issue you want to know your company is there for you. They should have an after-hours procedure that they can explain to you before you sign up. You always seem to need a delivery or have an issue at the worst times. It’s important your company is there for you. If not, than you should consider switching your propane providers.
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What happens after the first fill price?
Propane companies can be very aggressive in summer offering low first-fill rates. Ask if there are price protection programs available. Also, if you only get 1 delivery of propane per year o less be honest with the company and simply say “ I might only use 50-100 gallons a year, will my price go up drastically if the market doesn’t move? The company should be able to provide an expected price range
Ask your company if budget plans are available. Paying for all your deliveries during the tough winter months can be difficult. Being able to spread your payments out over the whole year can be quite beneficial to you & a great question to ask when signing up.
If you are new to propane and need a tank installed there are a few general questions to go over. Ask about the rental fee if it’s an above-ground tank. If you are installing an underground tank ask if there is lease & buy options available. If you are going with a lease option where the company retains ownership of the tank ask if there is a buyout option. It should be made clear upfront. If you need more information on this make sure you check our Owning Vs. Renting Your Home Propane Tank piece.
Years in Business
This is a great opening question. Obviously, if a company has been around a long time they are doing something right. They are serving their customer’s needs. Obviously, new companies can do this too. But I think it’s important to know. Also, if they are new to propane it’s good to know the background. Was the company a heating oil company now offering propane or an HVAC Company etc. You want to know if your company knows what it takes to serve homeowners/businesses during the cold winter months.
Leak Check & Service Applications
When signing up ask if the company is capable of performing leak checks and running gas lines for additional propane applications. All companies should be able to perform a basic leak of your system. Also, a great benefit of propane is its versatility around the house. Choosing a company that can run additional lines in the future for you can save a lot of time and money instead of needing to call a plumber or somebody else out.
Safety & Insurance
When it comes to propane safety needs to be a priority. You can ask about their safety performance and ask if they are fully insured. In addition, you need to ask if there is a leak and what the company’s procedure is.
Online customer tools
Lastly, in this day in age, it’s nice to see your account online. You can see past deliveries, order propane, and pay a bill. This is a question to ask when signing up.
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