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Landscapers: 6 Steps to Switch to Propane Mowers

Propane-powered lawnmower

In an article from Total Landscape Care, see the six steps they list if you are considering switching your lawnmowers to propane:

1. Establish a relationship with a propane-fuel provider in your area. Metro Lawn provides a propane fuel program to help your business go green and save green.
Offering the only complete conversion program from beginning to end, Metro Lawn professionals will train your team on propane conversions and tailor a program to provide Fuel Your Way™.

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LP Gas: Uses Farther Afield

In case you’re interested in how propane is used around the world, the World LP Gas Association just put out a great report on the landscape and opportunities for propane in small islands in developing countries. Propane plays a very important role in these unique economic and geographic situations, and there is even more room for its use to grow. Propane can be quite cost effective compared to other energy sources, and along with its clean burning profile makes for a good fit for island economies that import most if not all of their energy needs.
The report goes into greater detail, but on a high-level basis propane is attractive because it is more easily transportable, has multiple uses such as heating and cooking, and is available at a lower cost than other energy sources, among other reasons.

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Restaurant Owners & Managers: Have you looked at propane?

The cost of energy is a major component of a restaurant’s operating costs, with energy-intensive appliances and high demands on hot water and HVAC systems. Choosing energy-efficient propane kitchen appliances, space heating and water heating systems can lower those costs and provide a quick return on investment.

Water Heating
In high-demand scenarios, an array of propane tankless water heaters offer a space-saving and cost-efficient way to produce hot water. These tankless racks create redundancy, so the hot water supply will continue even if one unit is out of commission. Tankless water heaters offer economical, on-demand, endless hot water. Furthermore, they can be installed either inside or outside, depending on climate.

Space Heating
An efficient rooftop furnace can quickly and cost-effectively heat a restaurant, and can serve two different zones for the kitchen and seating area. Newer units have multiple stages and microprocessors to reduce energy costs, along with variable airflow to meet diverse heating loads.

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Day in the Life: Director of Safety Compliance and Training

For our next Day in the Life blog series interview, I reached out to our Safety Compliance and Training Director, Christopher Wagner, to learn more about him and his role at AmeriGas.

Christopher Wagner, Director of Safety Compliance and Training at AmeriGas

Safety is our highest priority here at AmeriGas. Our safety commitment is an ongoing mission that extends to everything we do. Christopher takes great pride in what he does for a living, but he also makes time for a (very delicious) grand chemistry experiment.

Explain your role at AmeriGas.
I am the Director of Safety Compliance and Training for AmeriGas. The purpose of my role is to ensure that we have the most effective safety training programs available for our coworkers to understand and avoid the risks associated with their jobs. My group focuses on the data collected from audits and incidents to watch for trends, and these trends are used to develop programs that allow us to be proactive in our safety program as opposed to reactive. 

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Propane Can Enhance Profit For Retail Facilities

For owners of retail facilities, the bottom line is always top of mind. Building and renovating with propane-fueled space heating and water heating can help slash energy costs and deliver the key performance amenities that are vital to their business.

Water Heating. In low-demand scenarios, a single tankless unit installed neat the point of use greatly reduces delivery times and standby heat losses. A small installation footprint reserves valuable square footage. A propane-fueled tankless water heater offers economical, on-demand, endless hot water while generating half as many carbon dioxide emissions ass a conventional electric storage water heater.

Space Heating. An efficient rooftop furnace can quickly and cost-effectively heat a small or midsize retail building. Businesses replacing older units with newer, high-efficiency units can expect a payback within two years of operation.

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Farmers Plan Ahead: 2014 PERC Propane Farm Incentive Program

Recently reported by precision.agwired.com: The Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) is encouraging farmers to plan ahead for harvest season and upgrade their grain dryers with new, fuel-efficient propane models with a $5,000 incentive through the 2014 Propane Farm Incentive Program.

Many farmers in the upper Midwest and Northeast faced delayed planting this spring due to cool, wet weather, ice on the Great Lakes, and cold soil temperatures due to snow cover.

“Last year, a cool, wet spring delayed planting and shortened the growing season, and the result was record-high drying needs,” said Mark Leitman, PERC director of marketing and business development. “Farmers can prepare for harvest by speaking with their propane dealers this summer about their estimated energy needs. We also recommend upgrading older drying systems with new, fuel-efficient propane models.”

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Let’s Hear It For The USA! (and for Grilling Safely this Independence Holiday)

This Friday is the one of the most popular grilling occasions of the Summer and while everyone is focused on grilling great food, we wanted to remind you to be even better at safely grilling that great food. Below, please find tips on how to ensure grilling safety for your holiday cookout.

(Photo courtesy of Google Images)

Placement of Your Grill & Propane Cylinders (Find these safety tips and more on our AmeriGas cylinder wraps as well as on our website here)

  • Use your grill outdoors only. Your propane grill should be placed at least 5 feet away from your home.
  • Use your grill in a well-ventilated area
  • Make sure your grill is not up against dry bushes, flowers or plants
  • Never grill or store a cylinder in any enclosed areas (including trailers, tents, houses and garages)
  • Ensure that the grill is firmly in place and that it is stable and cannot be tipped over

Posted in AmeriGas Cylinder Exchange, Propane Cylinder Refill, Residential Propane, Safety | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Reliable Home Heating Act Officially Signed Into Law

NPGA (National Propane Gas Association) Announcement: On June 30, 2014, President Obama signed into law S. 2086, the Reliable Home Heating Act.

From LPGas Magazine’s website:

According to the bill, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) must accept hours-of-service (HOS) extensions during emergencies declared by a governor for up to two additional 30-day periods – for a total of three periods. The law had allowed only the FMCSA or the president, via an emergency declaration, to grant additional HOS extensions.

The Reliable Home Heating Act also provides an early warning mechanism to monitor home heating fuel inventory levels. The bill would require the Energy Information Administration to notify the governor of each state in a Petroleum Administration for Defense District if propane inventory has been below the most recent five-year average for more than three consecutive weeks.

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Homeowners: 10 Most Cost-Effective Upgrades to Improve Your Home’s Energy Efficiency

(Photo courtesy of buildwithpropane.com)

Propane Education and Research Council (PERC) recently shared a new study on their buildwithpropane.com website that will help remodelers and home performance contractors prioritize needed home improvements. (Original article written by Jeffrey Lee, Staff Writer for PERC)

Spurred by state and federal government incentives, utility initiatives, and high energy bills, homeowners across the country are seeking ways to improve their homes to save energy. From 2006 to 2011, national annual electricity efficiency program spending tripled from $1.6 billion to about $4.8 billion, and natural gas efficiency programs increased from $0.3 billion in 2006 to $1.1 billion in 2011, according to a recent report from the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy.

For many homeowners, conducting a whole-house energy retrofit is prohibitively expensive. For these owners, and for the remodelers and home performance contractors who advise them, that leads to a reasonable question that can be difficult to answer: “What are the most cost-effective changes I can make to improve the energy efficiency of my home?”

Posted in Commercial Propane, Home Builders, Residential Propane | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Day in the Life: Acquisition Manager

Chris Griffin, Acquisitions Manager for AmeriGas

For our next Day in the Life blog series interview, I sat down with Chris Griffin, one of our Acquisitions Managers. We discussed his role here at AmeriGas, favorite part about his job and even his current grilling skills.

Explain your role at AmeriGas.
I work in the Corporate Development group at AmeriGas, as an Acquisitions Manager, along with two other Managers and a Director.  We are led by the Group Director.  We manage the process of acquiring smaller propane companies, beginning with developing relationships with their owners We complete a financial valuation and present an offer to the owner, present the opportunity to the executive team, negotiate various points of the offer, and participate in due diligence activities. Finally, we manage the closing and integration process.

The acquisitions program at AmeriGas is definitely a collaborative effort.  When we acquire another company, people from nearly every department participates in the process in some way or another.  Whether it be operations employees in the field, IT, HR, legal, marketing, accounting, audit, supply, fleet, or national accounts; everyone contributes to our success.

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