Many decisions come with switching to propane as your primary fuel source, including figuring out when you need a refill, but there are options to make this process worry-free. Suppose you are an automatic propane delivery customer. In that case, these steps may not apply to you, as your propane provider has forecasted your delivery, and if you opt into a tank monitor, they know exactly how much gas you have left in your tank.
But it’s still a good idea to know the indicators that your tank is running low.
With this in mind, here are six signs to help you stay financially efficient — all whilst avoiding an emergency where you’re Googling “fast propane refill near me” in desperate need of the fuel source.
1. The Gauge Is Your Best Starting Point
Propane tanks come with a gauge that can help you see how much fuel is left in the chamber. This is the most efficient way to see when you’re running low on fuel.
Don’t be surprised if you never see your gauge over 80% (in fact, that’s a good thing!). Propane tanks should never be filled over 80% capacity to allow for fluctuations from heat and cold. Knowing how to read your gauge is important for customers who are on automatic delivery.
2. Time Is Another Easy Indicator
Over time, you’ll get a feel for how long a full tank of propane will last. This can help you find a rhythm with your refills as you get a feel for your propane usage.
Of course, this will still vary depending on factors like the weather and how many appliances are using the propane at any given time, if additional people are utilizing the utilities, or perhaps you’re spending more time at home than usual.
If the variations are too much to keep track of, you may want to switch from a will-call customer (i.e., you call when you need a refill) to an automatic customer. Paraco Gas uses forecasting methods that make timing the deliveries a breeze and remove any guesswork.
3. Don’t See a Steady Flame? It May Be Time for a Refill.
A flickering or sputtering flame is another sneaky way you can see that you’re low on propane. When you turn on a stove or a fireplace, look for any inconsistencies in how it burns.
If you see that the flame is unsteady, the flow of propane may be erratic. This likely points to a low fuel supply and the need to refill your tank before running out of fuel.
4. When Appliances Don’t Light, a Lack of Gas Is a Likely Culprit
A sputtering flame may be hard to notice. One thing that is much easier to catch is if your appliance or furnace fails to turn on and operate.
Of course, there are many reasons a propane appliance might not turn on. Perhaps the pilot light is out, or the gas line is closed. If you haven’t tinkered with any of the parts, though, chances are you simply ran out of propane, and it’s time for a refill.
5. The Natural Flow of the Year Can Guide You
The weather is one of the best reminders that it’s time to refill your propane tank. As the seasons shift and the temperatures drop, homeowners often begin thinking of preparing for the winter weather, which is when it’s time to consider if you need to refill your propane. Often your propane provider will have your historical usage and forecast when you need the delivery.
Refilling Your Tank the Right Way
It’s never recommended to let your propane tank supply dwindle. When you risk running dry, you put yourself in a situation with the potential to cause a larger financial impact on your wallet. Learning the signs, checking the gauges, and observing unsteady flames are all great habits to develop to become a more responsible propane user.