Summer Grilling: Safety Tips for Propane and Gas Handling

Summer Grilling: Safety Tips for Propane and Gas Handling

It’s summer once again, and that means it’s time for outdoor grilling, long road trips in your RV, and reopening your summer cabin in the woods.  These summer activities, in most cases, involve handling propane and gas. In order to prevent fire, injury and death you must handle propane tanks the right way. Use the handling tips provided below to ensure your family’s safety.

Remember The Rules

Get professional help

Do not attempt to fill propane tanks on your own. Call in a professional who will fill the tank until its 80 percent full. This leaves room for the gas to expand in the summer heat.

Check the labels

Propane is flammable, and all new tanks must have a decal to remind consumers of the dangers. Look for the date stamp on the tank’s collar. The stamp will indicate the last date of inspection and refill. Propane tanks must be inspected regularly and should not be refilled if it’s more than 10 years old.

Accident Preventative Measures

Check for leaks

Manufacturers add a scent to the normally odourless propane to make it easy to identify leaks. If you get the smell of boiled cabbages or rotten eggs, then gas may be leaking from the tank. Make a solution of liquid soap and water and pour it on the tank’s valve. Gas bubbles will indicate that there’s a leak.

Don’t travel long distances with a full tank

If you must take your tank to your cottage in the woods, you should stop to refill the tank at a location that’s closest to your final destination. Carrying a full tank of propane in your vehicle is never a good idea since it could lead to further complications if you’re in a vehicular accident or crash.

Be proactive

It’s dangerous to smoke around a propane tank – so don’t smoke. And while you’re at it, don’t tie anything to your propane line. Find another place to tie your pets and bicycle. Remember that your home insurance claims can and often will be compromised if you do not use the right preventative measures to avoid disasters.

Act fast to avoid a disaster

Take leaks seriously. If you suspect that there’s a leak in your home, don’t turn on electrical switches or appliances because it could lead to an explosion. Instead of trying to investigate the source of the leak, you should leave the house and notify your local fire department.

Store tanks outdoors

Propane tanks should be stored in an upright position and in a well-ventilated and shaded area outdoors. Don’t store tanks in your home, car, or garage. You may keep a small amount of gas for fueling small engines in the garage but don’t store your propane tanks there. Keep your tanks in an upright position and make sure that they are always far away from sources of heat and flammable substances.

Use Approved Disposal Methods

Your outdated cylinders must be taken to an approved hazardous waste disposal site in your area. You could also find out if your refueling station will accept the old tank. Do not dispose an empty tank with your other garbage since it could lead to an explosion when the waste is compacted.

Play it safe with gas and propane and you’ll enjoy your summer grilling that’s free from unwanted incidents.

Tom Grant is a retired mechanic who loves to blog online. You can find his articles on various Internet websites. For expert assistance in seeking insurance, visit the BrokerLink website.

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