FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Got a question? Scan our FAQs for answers. If you’re still not finding the information you’re looking for, give us a call at 800-647-4427 or send us an email at contactus@paracogas.com.

Know What to Do

How can I tell if there is a gas leak?

By the Odor! As a protective measure for your safety, a strong odorant is added to propane so that you will easily be able to detect the odor. Make sure your entire family can recognize the odor of propane gas. Under some conditions, such as when suffering from colds, allergies or sinus congestion, or when strong cooking odors are present, you may not smell a leak. Therefore, it is recommended that you install a propane gas detector in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. Carbon monoxide detectors are also recommended for oil, natural gas, propane or any other solid, liquid or gas-fueled system.

What should I do if I smell gas?

Take immediate action. If you smell gas in your house, camper, RV, workplace or around any gas equipment:

  • Extinguish smoking materials and other open flames.
  • DO NOT turn light switches, appliances or thermostats on or off, and DO NOT use the telephone. An electric spark could ignite the gas.
  • Promptly get everyone out of the building, vehicle, RV, trailer or area.
  • If safe to do so, close all propane container supply valves.
  • Contact Paraco from your cell phone, or a neighbor’s phone.
  • Stay out of the building until the problem has been corrected.
My propane container has been locked off. Why do I need to have someone home for it to be unlocked if you were able to lock it when no one was home?

We can disconnect service at the propane tank or regulator and install a lock on the tank without entering your home. To resume service, we must remove the lock and perform a leak check, which may require us to access your home to shut off gas flow to an appliance(s). Once the leak check is completed and the propane is turned back on, all appliance pilots must be verified for proper operation.

My propane container gauge reads 45% but my appliance is not working. What should I do?

See if your other gas appliances are working. If they are, call your HVAC service professional to fix the broken appliance. If they are not, contact us as soon as possible.

Paying Your Bill

What address should I send my payment to?

Paraco Gas Corporation
P.O. Box 412227
Boston, MA 02241-2227

What forms of payment do you accept?

We accept checks, cash and major credit cards (Visa® and MasterCard® only). You can also select our Direct Pay or Easy Pay Programs to set up worry-free automatic payments. Go to My Account and choose whether you want your account balance automatically deducted from your checking account within 10 business days of the service (Direct Pay) or added to your credit card upon statement date (Easy Pay).

How can I pay my invoices automatically from my checking account or credit card?

Visit My Account to sign up for our convenient Direct Pay or Easy Pay Programs. Choose whether you want your account balance automatically deducted from your checking account within 10 business days of the service (Direct Pay) or added to your credit card upon statement date (Easy Pay). Or, contact customer service to request an authorization form. You can supply your credit card or checking account information, sign the form and return it in the envelope provided. Although there is no charge for this service, you must be a credit-approved customer.

How do I pay my bill online?

The easiest way to pay your bill online is through the My Account feature. Sign in and make a payment right there. We accept checks, cash and major credit cards (Visa® and MasterCard® only). You can also select our Direct Pay or Easy Pay Programs to set up worry-free automatic payments. Go to My Account and choose whether you want your account balance automatically deducted from your checking account within 10 business days of the service (Direct Pay) or added to your credit card upon statement date (Easy Pay).

Reading Your Bill

Who do I call if I have a question about my invoice or statement?

Billing questions should be directed to the customer service department at the Paraco location printed on your invoice. Paraco utilizes a mobile customer management system that will provide you with an invoice immediately upon the completion of your delivery. You do have the option of receiving an invoice in the mail if your billing address is different from your delivery address. At the end of the month, if there is an outstanding balance, you will receive a statement showing all deliveries/services for the month plus any prior balance.

Where can I find my account number on my invoice, statement or service work order?

Delivery ticket: Your account number is located under the word “invoice,” (red type).

Statement/Invoice: Your account number is located in the top right corner on the remittance section and also in the center of the invoice/statement under the Paraco logo.

Service work order: Your account number is located in the top left corner, a few lines down.

Cost & Fees

What is an ECC fee, and why am I being charged for it?

Insurance and regulatory compliance greatly affect the propane industry, and these costs continue to rise. To ensure safety in all aspects of our operations, we pass along a portion of our expenses in these areas to our customers in the form of a Safety and Maintenance/ECC charge. Some companies build the cost of compliance into their propane price; Paraco prefers to bill for this cost separately. Compliance expenses include insurance, Hazmat registration, HUT (Highway Use Tax) permits, Auto Fuel Carrier permits, International Fuel Tax Authority permits, local licenses and more.

Why have my propane costs gone up?

Inventory supplies in the United States and Canada are often depleted faster than they can be replaced, which drives up prices. This affects transportation costs as well, since the trucks used to transport gas to our storage tanks have to travel greater distances to pick up supply. Prices in the Northeast are high, but not as high as they are in the Midwest, where wholesale propane is being sold for more than $5 per gallon.

When will my propane pricing come down?

If the price of propane rises, the higher costs will likely last through the winter. Once demand decreases and production outpaces demand, prices should return to lower levels.

What is a lease fee?

Companies charge this fee to offset the high cost of purchasing, maintaining and replacing the equipment installed at your home or business. Propane containers may need to be recertified or replaced after their original test date expires. If the propane container is in good condition, we can sometimes recertify them on location, but in many cases, they are rusted or in poor condition and need to be changed.

If I increase my usage will the lease fee be waived?

Yes. By adding uses such as heating or hot water, you can eliminate lease fees and decrease your price of propane. Changing your old oil system or electric heat to propane can not only save you money, but it can help the environment and reduce our country’s demand on foreign oil. Read more about propane’s benefits.

I found a company that said it doesn’t charge a lease fee—why shouldn’t I change companies?

Our priority is serving you quickly, safely, and properly. Some companies might not charge a lease fee because they don’t carry as much insurance as we do. They also may not replace as many propane containers a year due to maintenance matters. In addition, their technicians and drivers may not be properly trained or qualified to handle emergency situations.

What will happen to the cost of my fuel once the introductory rate has expired?

Your price will revert to the market rate. The price you pay will be based on the market cost plus your annual consumption; the more propane you use, the better the rate we can offer you.

How often will the price of propane fuel fluctuate?

Unfortunately, there is no way to predict how often the price will fluctuate. However, we can guarantee that we will always give you a fair, competitive rate.

Why am I being charged a restocking fee?

A restocking fee is a service charge that covers the cost of the technician coming to your home and safely disconnecting the equipment. The fee also covers the cost of transferring out the gas and restocking both the propane and the propane container itself.

My propane container has been installed here for a very long time—shouldn’t it be paid for by now?

Propane containers may need to be recertified or replaced after their original test date expires. If the container is in good condition we can sometimes recertify them on location, but in many cases, they are rusted or in poor condition and need to be changed. We charge a fee for these services. You may also be charged a fee to cover problems with your propane container or regulator. When you own your container, the cost to replace a regulator could exceed $250 (including labor). Container replacements can cost more than $700, depending on your tank size.

Isn’t the cost of the equipment factored into the price per gallon?

No, the price of propane is based on changing market conditions, estimated annual usage and what it costs us to deliver it to you. Our cost for the truck, the driver and other related delivery expenses stays the same, whether we are delivering 40 gallons or 400. That’s why the more propane you use, the lower the price per gallon. This principle applies when you buy almost any commodity—even milk (compare the price of a quart of milk to the price of a gallon, for example).

Can I purchase my Propane Container?

Yes, you can call your local office to get current pricing. It’s important to note, however, that once you purchase your propane container any maintenance work, leak repairs, or replacement container and parts will be a billable service, which can get expensive (especially after hours).

Delivery

Do I need to be home for the installation or can I have someone else there?

Someone 18 or older needs to be present for an installation.

How can I help Paraco help me?

Keep your driveway and a pathway to your propane container clear so our driver can easily access your equipment. Alert us to any changes in your account, such as the addition of appliances or any other known change in usage. Please pay your bill on time; during these times of high-cost product, our suppliers pay very close attention to their credit terms.

Service Calls

Do I need to be home for a service call or Safety Survey?

If your whole propane system is in an accessible area outside your home (as in a pool heater or generator), you don’t have to be home—just make sure any gates are left unlocked and dogs are put away. However, if we find a problem and can’t reach you, we will have to turn the propane container off as a precaution until we can arrange a time to meet with you. If you have an indoor appliance, someone 18 or older must be home so our technician can enter your home and verify proper operation and compliance with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) codes for all appliances. Paraco offers after-hours Safety Checks and service resumption in select markets—contact us for details.

Your technician “red-tagged” my propane container/appliance. What does that mean and what do I do now?

If a technician finds the container or appliance in an unsafe location, leaking or in violation of code, he must turn off the system until a repair, relocation or replacement can be arranged. The technician reports red tags to a local Area Manager, who will schedule a follow-up call to remedy the situation as soon as possible.

I received a change-out letter. What does that mean?

To remain in use, DOT propane cylinders must be recertified 12 years after the original manufacture date and then every 5 years thereafter by a visual inspection. We need to schedule an appointment when someone is home to remove your current propane cylinder, install a replacement container, and perform a leak check. You will receive full credit for propane that is in your current cylinder and billed for the propane needed to fill the new container.

Safety Surveys

What is a Safety Survey? Do I need one?

During a safety survey your technician will test your propane system for proper operation and safe installation. They will perform a test(s) on your gas line and propane container to ensure they are leak free. They will also make sure that both the propane container and your appliances meet all National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) guidelines.

Why do I need to have a leak check?

Leak checks are required any time there is an interruption of your gas service—meaning any time the flow of gas in your home is stopped for any reason. NFPA 54 (2017), states, “Immediately after the gas is turned on into a new system or into a system that has been initially restored after an interruption of service, the piping system shall be tested for leakage. If leakage is indicated, the gas supply shall be shut off until the necessary repairs have been made.” The leak check may be billed at Paraco’s standard service rate.

Does the propane shortage affect my ability to get supply?

Because Paraco sources its fuel from more than 10 supply points, we are somewhat insulated from the shortages that other propane suppliers experience. While no propane company is immune to these shortages, we generally have enough fuel on hand to satisfy our customers’ needs throughout the winter. Diversifying our supply this way is a little more costly, but it is necessary to ensure you have the supply you need, when you need it.

Filling Your Propane Container

How do I know when I’m due for a delivery?

If you are on Automatic Delivery, we will know when to refill your tank(s). Paraco monitors your consumption and refills your containers accordingly. However, it is important that you notify us of any changes in routine usage; for example, the addition or removal of an appliance or increased usage of appliances. If you are on Will-Call Delivery, call our customer service department when your container gauge is at 30% to schedule a delivery. Pool customers should check their gauge weekly. Ask about our peace of mind Tank Monitor—it calls us automatically when you need a delivery.

I don’t want to turn my propane container off every time I leave for vacation or the season. Is there a way to save money and not heat my hot water when I am not home?

Many hot water heaters have a vacation mode, where the pilot remains on, but the burner does not. When you return, turn the valve on and the hot water heater will work as normal.

What is the wait time for a delivery if I am a “will-call” customer? Is there a way to shorten the wait time?

We do our best to service you within a couple of days. The typical wait time depends on the location of your home, and is usually two to three business days. Paraco does offer next-day delivery service for $75 plus tax and same-day service for $150 plus tax. Please note that same-day service is dictated by driver and truck availability and is at the discretion of Paraco dispatch.

My delivery is scheduled for today. What time is it coming?

Unfortunately, due to the uncertain nature of our business and the possibility of emergency calls, it is not possible to accurately predict a narrow delivery time window. If you are not out of fuel, you do not need to be home for the delivery driver. If you run out of fuel, a general time window will be given—for example, 8am to noon, or noon to 5pm.

Why isn’t my propane container filled to 100% capacity?

Propane is delivered and stored in liquid form. Propane liquid expands nearly 17 times more quickly than water over the same temperature increase. As a result, propane containers are filled to about 80 to 85% of their capacity. This allows the propane liquid to expand freely with changes in temperature caused by hot days, cool nights, rain, snow and other factors. Because of these temperature changes, you may see fluctuations in your container gauge—this is normal.

There are propane companies offering partial container filling for customers. Can we expect the same?

No. Paraco fills your container to its full capacity to reduce the number of deliveries we make so we can be available for you when you need fuel most.

About the System

How is my propane system designed?

Your propane system has four basic parts:

  • A tank or cylinder
  • One or more regulators
  • Gas piping
  • Gas appliance(s)
Can I bury my current aboveground propane container?

No. Your aboveground container is not coated or manufactured to be buried. We carry underground propane containers in various sizes; please contact our sales department at 800-647-4427 to learn more.

Can I connect my barbecue to my main propane container?

Built-in or stationary units can be connected to the main propane supply. Installation options include quick disconnect and barbecue box models. Contact us for information.

What is a tank monitor and how does it work?

A monitor is a cellular receiver that reads the amount of propane in your propane container and sends us a report each day. It is a great solution for customers who aren’t eligible for automatic delivery because they have a “sporadic use” appliance such as a fireplace, pool heater or generator. Contact your local branch for information about an optional monitor service. You do not have to be home for any monitor installation or service.

I have two large propane containers in my backyard and would like to switch companies. What do I have to do?

Inventory the containers to determine who owns them (you or the supplier), what the gas is used for, how many gallons you use yearly, where the containers are located on the property, whether they are aboveground or underground, and if they meet all the code requirements. Paraco can survey your site at no charge to make sure your containers are up to code.

I have had these propane containers for a long time. Why do I need a permit now?

The gas company installing containers is required to ensure a storage permit is approved by the fire department or the authority having jurisdiction. If new gas piping is needed, a permit may also be required from your town or city.

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