Propane: The Versatile Fuel For Outdoors
An appealing outdoor living space can be a welcome retreat, bringing you the comforts of home under a canopy of stars. One of the best ways to deliver those comforts is with the help of propane gas.
Adding a propane-powered outdoor kitchen or propane firepit is a great way to bring a getaway vibe to your home at a fraction of the cost of a home addition. An investment in your outdoor space will usually pay for itself by making your home more desirable if you choose to sell it, to say nothing of what it will do for your energy bills if your family spends more time outside your home than in it with the A/C running 24/7.
Propane Can Do That – Outdoors, Too
Imagine what you could do with an outdoor space packed with comforts you know and love. Consider these propane possibilities for your outdoor space:
- Propane patio heaters – Keep your guests comfortable on chilly nights and extend your outdoor entertainment season by weeks or even months.
- Propane mosquito magnets – Imagine mosquito protection without the noxious smells or obnoxious sounds of sprays and zappers (here’s how a propane mosquito magnet works).
- A propane grill – When it comes to outdoor cooking, nothing beats the precision control of propane. Make a built-in propane grill the centerpiece of your outdoor kitchen, or upgrade your charcoal grill to a portable propane model.
- Propane pool heaters – Why limit your swimming to hot summer days? Get a propane pool heater and you’ll stretch your summer by several weeks. Propane is great for spa heating, too.
- Propane lighting – From tiki torches to modern fixtures, propane lighting adds ambiance to any outdoor space without the wires or stinky candles.
- Propane fire pits and fire tables – Imagine sitting by a hearth under the stars – without leaving your backyard! You can do it, thanks to propane.
Power your outdoor fun with propane – delivered when and where you need it from the pros at Cherry Energy. Contact Cherry Energy today to learn more about reliable propane deliveries and propane outdoor living installations in eastern North Carolina!
May is National Barbecue month – which means it’s time to get out and cooking on your propane grill! Just be sure you have enough propane to get you through a busy summer of outdoor cooking.
If your grill is built-in and connected to your main propane tank, that means keeping an eye on your fuel gauge and scheduling a propane delivery when it gets to about one-quarter full. But if you use a 20-pound portable propane cylinder, things get a little more complicated.
That’s because 20-pound propane cylinders generally don’t have a gauge – which means you’ll have to find another way to judge how much propane is in your tank.
How To Check Your Propane Level
Here are three simple ways to do that.
- Use warm water. The FIX IT Home Improvement Channel shared this safe and simple trick to determine how much propane is left in your tank. To do it,
- Fill a small bucket with warm to hot tap water.
- Pour the water down the side of the tank.
- Run your hand along the side of the tank and feel for a cool spot.
The top of the cool spot is the fill level of the tank (it’s cool because liquid propane inside the tank absorbs heat from the water, which makes the metal wall of the tank cool to the touch).
- Weigh the tank. Most propane grill tanks come with two numbers stamped on the handle – the water capacity (“WC”) and “Tare Weight” (TW – the weight of the tank when it’s empty). Most grilling tanks weigh about 17 pounds when empty and hold about 20 pounds of gas.
To measure how many pounds of propane are left in your tank, simply weigh it on a scale and subtract the TW number. For example, if a tank weighing 27 pounds has a TW of 17 pounds, there’s about 10 pounds of gas left – a little more than half a tank.
- Install an external gauge. External propane tank gauge options include:
- Inline pressure gauges install between the gas line from the grill and the cut-off valve on the tank, measuring pressures to determine how full the tank is.
- Analog propane scales look like luggage scales and are pre-set to take your tank’s TW into account.
- Digital propane tank scales provide a digital readout of remaining cook time and gas fill percentage. Some even come with smart phone apps.
Pick the gauge you like and give it a go!
How Much Cooking Time Do I Have?
So what does all of this mean when it comes to planning your meals this summer?
As a rule of thumb, a medium-sized grill on high heat will use approximately two pounds of fuel per meal. Following this rule, a 20-pound propane tank will provide 18-20 hours of cooking time on a medium grill. A larger grill can burn through 20lbs of propane in as little as 10 hours.
Remember – these are only estimates, so be sure to plan ahead!
Don’t get burned by your propane cylinder – follow these tips to know how much gas is left in your tank before your next summer cookout!
If you need a propane cylinder refill, please visit one of our Cherry Energy Dealer Locations for an exchange.
If you have a built-in propane grill, be sure to keep enough propane gas on hand to keep it running all season long. Contact Cherry Energy today to schedule a propane delivery in eastern North Carolina today.
If you read this blog, you probably already know that propane is one of the most versatile and clean-burning fuels around – a gas capable of efficiently powering just about any appliance in your home or business (or even your vehicles), and almost always more effective than electricity.
How much do you really know about propane? Here are 10 facts to get to know more about this clean, green home energy source:
- Most domestically produced propane is a byproduct of domestic natural gas processing. In fact, current U.S. propane supplies are abundant due in large part to the recent increase in natural gas production. Some propane is produced from the crude oil refinement process.
- Propane is a three-carbon alkane with the molecular formula C3H8; it is one of the lightest hydrocarbons in existence, which makes it one of the cleanest burning of all fossil fuels.
- In its natural state, propane is nontoxic, colorless, and virtually odorless; an odorant (which smells like rotten eggs) is added for safety’s sake.
- Propane is 270 times more compact as a liquid than as a gas – which is why it’s far more economical to store and transport as a liquid.
- Propane is the only alternative fuel listed in the 1990 amendments to the Clean Air Act and the National Energy Policy Act of 1992; neither the process by which propane is produced nor the combustion of propane gas produces significant acid rain contaminants.
- Propane gas does not spill, pool, or leave a residue; this makes it harmless to soil or groundwater if a tank leaks.
- Propane furnaces can be up to 95 percent efficient; propane tankless water heaters can achieve even greater efficiency – up to 98 percent.
- Propane clothes dryers dry more quickly while creating less static than electric units, saving you time and money and reducing wear and tear on your wardrobe.
- Propane cooking ranges offer precision temperature control – a key reason why nearly 95 percent of professional chefs choose to cook with gas. Propane stoves also cost less to operate than their electric counterparts.
- Nearly 90 percent of the U.S. propane supply is produced domestically; almost three-quarters of the remaining 10 percent is produced in Canada or Mexico.
No matter how you look at it, propane is a premium performance fuel for your home, business, or farm. Why not consider making the switch?
Did you know that Cherry Energy offers reliable propane delivery and expert propane appliance installation and service anywhere in our North Carolina service area? Now you do! Contact us to become a Cherry Energy customer or to request a propane delivery today.
Heating water accounts for just almost one-fifth used in a typical American home, according to the U.S. Department of Energy – which means the type of water heater you choose can have a big impact on your wallet (along with your carbon footprint!).
For these reasons and more, we’re big believers in switching from electric to propane it comes time to install your next water heater.
3 Advantages Of Propane Water Heating
Compared to an electric-powered water heater, a propane-powered water heater is:
- A more cost-effective investment – When you consider the total cost of owning a propane water heater – including installation fees, the longer lifespan of the equipment, and the amount of water you can heat per dollar spent on fuel – propane equipment ends up being about 30 percent cheaper than electricity over the course of the equipment’s lifetime.
- A better performer – A propane water heater heats water nearly twice as quickly as an electric heater, which means faster recovery times (and therefore less time without hot water; with a propane tankless water heater, that downtime shrinks to zero). Propane water heaters are also extremely durable, lasting up to 10 years longer than electric heat pump models.
- More eco-friendly – More than one-third of the electricity produced in North Carolina is generated by burning natural gas, which is mostly methane – a gas that is more than 80 times more effective at trapping heat than carbon dioxide. Another 20 percent of the state’s electricity is generated by burning coal, another big GHG producer. Burning propane, on the other hand, releases virtually no greenhouse gases.
In short, compared with electric models, propane water heaters cost less to operate, last longer, and are less harmful to the planet. If you make a further investment in a propane tankless water heating system, you’ll also save space, get unlimited hot water, and gain more accurate temperature control and longer equipment life.
When you add it all up, propane and water heating are a perfect match. To learn more about propane water heater installation in western NC, contact Cherry Energy today!
After a mild start to winter 2020/21, we can officially declare that winter has arrived here in North Carolina (thanks to our old friend the polar vortex).
Frigid temperatures like the ones we’ve seen recently can cause you to use more propane gas than you expected to or planned for. That’s why, if you’re a Will Call customer, it’s important to keep a close eye on your gas gauge to avoid a costly and potentially dangerous propane run-out.
Reading Your Propane Gas Gauge
If you’re new to propane, or aren’t sure how to read your tank gauge, here are three important things to remember.
- Larger domestic propane tanks typically have a built-in fuel gauge, often located under the tank dome or cover.
- The gauge usually looks a lot like the gas gauge in your car, with numbers that show the percentage of the tank that is full. Most gauges read from 0 to about 90 percent; tanks are never filled to 100 percent capacity because propane gas expands as temperatures rise (space must be provided to allow for the expansion).
- Never wait until you’re nearly out of fuel to order your propane! Contact us when your gauge reads no less than 25 percent full.
Skip The Hassles: Choose Auto-Fill From Cherry Energy
Of course, you could avoid the hassle of gauge gazing by letting Cherry Energy manage your propane supply with FREE Auto-Fill. If you’re not familiar with Auto-Fill, here’s how it works:
- Our delivery teams will estimate how much fuel you’re likely to use based on your past bills and the current weather (if you have recently become a Cherry Energy customer, we’ll estimate based on local averages for a home your size).
- Your delivery will be scheduled when your tank is about one-quarter full.
- With Auto-Fill, we’ll manage your propane deliveries and scheduling to help you prevent an unexpected run-out. You’ll also get priority service over Will Call customers – a benefit that can really come in handy during unpredictable weather.
Drastically reduce your risk a propane run-out with FREE Auto-Fill from Cherry Energy. Contact us today to learn more, or to schedule your propane delivery!
Among home energy sources, propane gas has one of the best safety records around. But like any fuel that you use inside your home, you need to take precautions when dealing with propane or propane appliances – and know what to do, quickly, if a problem arises.
Tips For Using Propane Safely
Here are some important propane safety reminders for the winter months to come.
- Make sure all adults in your home know how to shut the valve on your main propane storage tank in case of emergency. If you don’t know how to do this, contact us – we’ll walk you through it.
- Make everyone in the house – including your children – knows how to detect a propane leak – and what to do if you think you have one.
- Prevent potentially dangerous carbon monoxide (CO) problems by:
- If severe weather is forecast,
- make sure you have enough propane gas to last at least a week in case of road closures; if you don’t, schedule a propane delivery as soon as possible.
- flag your propane tank so that the fill valve is visible and accessible in high or drifting snow.
- if your propane equipment has been damaged or is not working properly, contact us right away. Remember: if you shut down your gas for any reason, the law requires you to hire a licensed professional to restart you system.
For more winter propane safety tips, visit the Propane Education Research Council (PERC) website.
Stay safe this winter – contact Cherry Energy if you have any questions about propane safety, or if you need reliable propane deliveries in the North Carolina!
Propane is a great fuel to have around during winter, offering an efficient, powerful, and green way to keep your family safe and comfortable as temperatures plunge here in North Carolina.
But as a propane delivery customer, you have some important things to keep in mind during the cold months, especially before, during, and after storms and severe weather.
Propane Delivery Readiness
To help things go smoothly during heating season, be sure to follow these five steps:
- Keep a path to your propane tank clear – Snow, ice, and debris can make it difficult to reach your tank for proper maintenance, tank gauge monitoring, and refilling. During winter,
- keep at least an 18” path cleared to your propane gas tank, with special attention paid to its fill valve;
- keep your driveway clear, if propane delivery teams have to park there to deliver your fuel;
- install a colored flag near the fill valve of your propane tank so our delivery crew can find it in any weather; a flag also helps the driver to safely and most effectively position his truck for your delivery.
- Keep the tank clean – Once you clear a path to your tank after a snowfall, turn your attention to the tank itself. Always use a broom to clear snow and ice from your tank; a shovel could damage the tank.
- Keep a close eye on your propane levels – If you are not a Cherry Auto-Fill propane delivery customer, keep a close eye on your propane levels throughout the winter – especially during a cold snap when you will probably use propane more quickly than you realize. Call when your tank is about one-third full; the colder it is, the busier our delivery crew gets, so don’t wait until the last minute to contact us for a propane delivery.
- Remind your family about propane leaks – Always keep a nose out for a propane leak, which smells like rotten eggs. If you detect that odor, follow propane safety procedures immediately.
Be prepared for any weather this winter with reliable propane deliveries in eastern North Carolina from the pros at Cherry Energy. Contact us today to learn more, or to become a Cherry Energy customer.
Propane gas is one of the smartest and versatile ways to power equipment in your Eastern North Carolina home – but don’t sell it short for your business, either.
Because propane burns hot and clean, commercial propane appliances and heating systems can achieve efficiency ratings that reach well into the 90s. With that kind of performance, opting for propane is a great way to improve your company’s bottom line.
Commercial Propane Uses
Consider the benefits of commercial propane for these applications in your office or workspace:
- Space heaters – High-efficiency propane space heaters are a flexible way to add high-efficiency zone heating to your workspace and take some of the load off your primary commercial heating system. In larger spaces, shops, and warehouses, propane-fired Salamanders and radiant heaters will keep your workers warm and happy.
- Water heating – A propane water heater can deliver hot water at 40 percent the cost of an electric water heater – or even less if you use a tankless system. Tankless water heaters will also produce hot water indefinitely – an advantage in many commercial applications.
- Furnaces – A propane gas furnace is designed to deliver high heat in short bursts to minimize operating costs – unlike an electric heat pump, which produces lukewarm air and runs almost constantly. Once temperatures drop below freezing, a heat pump uses a backup heat source to keep pace with the increased heating load, eliminating any efficiency advantages it might otherwise have.
Propane For Farms, Temporary Heat, And Commercial Operations
While propane will definitely help out around the office, it really shines in industrial applications. For example:
- Forklifts powered by replaceable propane cylinders can operate for longer than gasoline models, and unlike electric-powered models can operate in wet and dry environments.
- Farmers can use propane for just about anything on their farm – from crop drying and powering irrigation machines to space heating and weed control.
- Construction companies can use propane for temporary heat, keeping their projects on time and on budget.
- Restaurants and commercial kitchens can use propane to cook in large quantities.
- Fleets can choose propane autogas over gasoline to improve their fuel economy, lower emissions, and reduce downtime for maintenance and repairs.
The Bottom Line
When it comes to efficiently powering your office appliances and commercial equipment, propane delivers – especially when compared to electricity. Contact Cherry Energy today to learn what propane can do for your business!
Need propane for your commercial operations? We can help! Contact Cherry Energy today about bulk propane delivery options, or to get a FREE, no obligation estimate on commercial propane equipment installations in Eastern North Carolina.
Looking for ways to be more efficient and productive in your North Carolina farm or agribusiness? Propane and propane-powered farm and commercial equipment can help you with both.
Clean, green, versatile propane is the perfect way to power just about any equipment or vehicle on your farm – and Cherry Energy has plenty of quality commercial propane gas on hand to keep your operation up, running and productive in this critical time of year.
Ways To Use Propane On The Farm
Cost-effective and eco-friendly, American-made propane can be used as a high-efficiency solution for just about any application on your farm, including:
- Farm equipment fueling
- Irrigation pumping
- Livestock area and other space heating
- Water heating
- Brooder house heating
- Crop drying
- Weed control
- Pest control
- Forklift fueling
- Backup / stand-by generator power
Cherry Energy: Convenient services, expert advice for your farm
Keeping pace with the demands of customers is hard for any business, but it’s especially difficult for farmers who have to respond to ever-changing conditions quickly and efficiently (as we’ve certainly learned in the last seven months!).
To keep pace as a commercial farmer, you need partners who can make your operation run better – and Cherry Energy can do just that. We offer:
- Convenient bulk delivery
- Flexible payment options to keep fuel costs manageable
- Expert technicians who are rigorously trained in safety procedures.
- 24/7 emergency service for automatic delivery customers
- And more
Considering adding propane-powered equipment to your agribusiness? The Propane Farm Incentive Program currently offers up to $5,000 toward eligible propane agricultural equipment. Contact us today to learn more, or to become a Cherry Energy customer.
The way 2020 has gone so far, it’s probably best to be prepared for anything as we transition from summer to fall – and one of the best ways to get face unpredictability at home is to install a whole-house propane backup generator.
When severe weather knocks out power – as it often does here in North Carolina these days – there are few things more comforting than knowing that your home comfort equipment will stay on until power is restored.
Why invest in a backup generator?
Unlike a portable generator, a whole house Generac standby generator can power all your major appliances, starting automatically within seconds of an outage. In addition to keeping the lights on, your backup generator will:
- provide flood protection – A generator will keep your sump pump working to keep water out of your basement and away from your property.
- keep your food fresh – Generators can keep hundreds of dollars of food from spoiling.
- power critical medical devices – A whole house generator can literally be a lifesaver, keeping emergency medical equipment online and working.
- keep your valuables safe – With a whole house generator, home security systems will keep protecting your valuables.
- help you stay connected – Battery operated radios, laptops, tablets and cellphones need to be recharged; a generator will help you stay connected.
- keep you comfortable – A whole house generator will keep your HVAC equipment running. Remember: even your gas-powered furnace needs electricity to fire up its computer and ignition system!
For all these reasons plus peace of mind in any weather, nothing beats a backup generator. Just remember: installing a backup generator is NOT a DIY job – it requires contractors with expertise in plumbing, electrical, and HVAC systems, along with local, regional, and federal flood, noise, gas, and electrical codes. Always hire an expert!
Be prepared for severe weather with a Generac propane backup generator, installed by the pros at Cherry Energy. Contact us today to hear more about backup generator installations in North Carolina!
Already have a backup generator? Make sure it’s filled up and ready for the fall and winter seasons! Contact Cherry Energy to schedule a propane delivery today.