Whether it’s a front passing through, a coastal storm, hurricane or pop-up storms from summer heat, Central Massachusetts is vulnerable to severe weather this time of year.
It’s important to know all there is to know about propane safety so you can protect your family and home when severe weather hits our area.
We’ve gathered some essential information and suggestions so that you may handle things if there is a bad storm.
Pay attention to propane leaks. If you smell the distinct rotten-egg odor of propane, it’s an indicator of a propane leak. Small propane leaks, particularly in inclement weather, can become worse and more dangerous.
Be informed and prepared. Every adult member of your family should know how to shut off the gas main at your propane tank. It must be done if you need to evacuate your home. Shutting off the gas avoids any damaged tanks from leaks which can ignite.
Be careful. When the storm arrives, take shelter inside and as far away as possible from electrical wires and conductive metals like your propane tank. If you’re outdoors and a storm strikes, stay away from trees, poles, and other tall, conductive objects or structures. Pay attention for instructions from local authorities on safety alerts and possible evacuations.
Inspect your property. If possible, go outside and look for trees or large branches that have fallen. Keep an eye out for downed electrical lines, which may harm your propane tank and put you and your family in risk.
Inspect propane appliances. Examine your propane appliances for any damage, leaks, or other concerns. You don’t want to use candles when inspecting your propane appliances because they might cause a leak and set off the gas.
Contact us if there’s a problem. If you see something worrisome with your propane tank, gas line, or propane equipment, get in touch with us right away. We will inspect and test all components to guarantee that they are functioning safely. If you detect gas, follow propane safety best practices and get everyone out right away (put out potential ignition sources like candles or cigarettes and don’t use any light switches or phones on your way out), then call 911 and Pioneer Oil and Propane.
Become a Pioneer Oil and Propane customer for safe and dependable propane delivery and service!
Taking a vacation this summer? Join the crowd!
According to Forbes, six out of 10 Americans are planning to travel at least once this summer, in spite of inflation and gas prices.
If you’re concerned about your summer vacation expenses, we’ve compiled five ideas to help you save money on your energy costs so you can relax and enjoy the trip.
During the summer, cooling accounts for roughly half of your home’s energy costs. By switching your air conditioning to 85°F when you’re gone for more than a day, you’ll save money! Before returning home, set your smart or programmable thermostat to go back to your preferred temperature several hours before you arrive so that the air is comfortable when you get home. Closing curtains and blinds can help keep your home from overheating as well as prevent people from peeking into your home when you’re not there.
Energy vampires are all over your home. Computers, TVs, media players, ovens, gaming systems, coffeemakers, toasters, multicookers, blenders, electric toothbrushes, and phone chargers, are examples of energy vampires. These devices are known as such because they’re constantly sucking up energy, even when they’re not in use. Before you go, unplug or turn off any of these you can.
A vacation mode is included in most modern water heaters. This lowers the temperature setting so that the water heater doesn’t run as frequently while you’re gone, but it heats up quickly when you reset it after your return.
If your water heater does not have a vacation setting, set it to low. Water heating makes up about 20% of home energy use, so turning it down while you’re gone can help you with your energy costs.
Want to keep saving money on your water heating even after your vacation? Set your water heater to 120˚ Fahrenheit rather than the manufacturer’s setting of 140˚. Your water will still be hot, but you will save up to 10% on your water heating energy costs. The lower temperature reduces the risk of scalding as well, especially for children and the elderly.
If you’re a Pioneer Oil & Propane Automatic Delivery propane customer, we ask that you inform us when you’ll be away from home for more than a few days. This is because we consider your usage history when we schedule your deliveries. Notifying us you’ll be away may keep us from making an unneeded propane delivery.
The days and hours leading up to your departure for vacation can be hectic, with packing and other tasks needing to get done.
All of this activity might cause you to forget if you completed necessary tasks such as our suggestions for conserving energy before leaving. This advice ensures that you have peace of mind about your energy savings and the protection and security of your house.
To begin, make a checklist on your phone covering energy-saving procedures to complete before going on vacation. As you complete them, check them off so you know they’ve been done.
Before you go, do a walk-through with your smartphone. Take photographs of all the rooms with the lights out, electronics and small appliances unplugged or shut off, water turned off to your washer, doors locked, and windows closed and secured. If you’re concerned about whether you left a light or appliance on while traveling, check the photographs from your phone for assurance.
By the way, if you have a smart thermostat, you can check your home’s HVAC system and your thermostat settings from your smartphone anywhere you get a cellular or WiFi signal.
Become a Pioneer Oil and Propane customer and get the most reliable fuel delivery and service in Central Massachusetts!
There has been a strong push nationwide as well as right here in Massachusetts lately to make electricity the primary energy source for homes based on the false belief that it is the best way to fight climate change.
But when you look more closely, you’ll notice that propane is the energy source that will assist us in achieving a zero-carbon future in a variety of ways.
You may think that electricity is “cleaner” than propane. However, this isn’t accurate. About half of all electricity generated in the United States comes from coal-fired power stations that increase greenhouse gases and cause acid rain. Propane, on the other hand, is so clean burning it produces close to zero greenhouse gas emissions!
Electricity is inefficiently transmitted. When electricity travels from a power plant through wires to your home, it encounters resistance, which results in a great deal of energy being lost. To create a unit of electricity in your house, it takes three units of source energy. To give us power, therefore, more coal must be burned, resulting in more carbon and CO₂.
Because propane is right there at your home, there is virtually no loss of energy from the tank to your appliances.
Propane is a better alternative to electricity for many appliances, allowing you to reduce your environmental impact even more. Propane water heaters heat more water faster than their electric counterparts and do it with about 30% less cost. Propane clothes dryers get your laundry dry about 25% faster than comparable electric dryers.
Propane is the most dependable fuel. Electricity can’t match its reliability. When the power goes out in a home heated by electricity, you have no heat. With propane, on the other hand, you’re not reliant on a utility grid for your heating, water heating, cooking, or other needs because your propane supply is right at your home.
Renewable propane is a revolutionary new development in creating more environmentally friendly energy sources.
Molecularly, renewable propane is identical to conventional propane. It’s made from non-fossil fuels like animal fats, plant oils, biomass, and other triglycerides, which are sustainable and renewable resources.
More of us here in Central Massachusetts will be able to use renewable propane in coming years to reduce our environmental impact even further while enjoying efficiency and comfort in our homes.
Become a Pioneer Oil and Propane customer for the most reliable propane delivery and service!
When your home’s water heater is approaching the end of its lifespan and becoming less efficient and dependable, you may feel like the process of purchasing a new one will be hard. It isn’t with Pioneer Oil and Propane!
We are with you every step of the way with expert water heater sales, installation, and service. We’ll also help you with securing financing and any rebates your new water heater is eligible for.
Something else we’ll do is help you answer these three questions, so you get the right water heater for your Central Massachusetts home.
Is your current water heater fueled by electricity? If it is, this is a fantastic opportunity to switch to a propane water heater! That’s because propane water heaters give you both better comfort and money savings.
Propane water heaters have an average cost of $25 less each month to run than electric water heaters, resulting in substantial savings on your water heating expenses.
Because to its exceptional energy efficiency, a propane water heater will save you up to $4,000 over the typical 10-year lifespan of a tank-style water heater from a comparable electric model.
In terms of energy efficiency, a propane water heater is fantastic in several ways. Its recovery rate is twice as quick as an equivalent electric water heater. The wait for hot water to shower will be significantly shortened.
You have a choice when it comes to propane water heaters.
There are several advantages to installing a traditional storage water heater with a tank. A 40-gallon propane water heater model generates the same amount of hot water as a 50-gallon electric unit while being far faster when it comes to heating water. It’s also less expensive to purchase, install, maintain, and repair.
On-demand propane tankless water heaters provide limitless hot water. Furthermore, because it only heats water when you require it, your energy bills will go down considerably. When you consider that water heating accounts for roughly 20% of your home’s energy use, it is a significant amount of money saved.
Look for the Energy Factor (EF) rating while comparing water heaters; this indicates a water heater’s energy efficiency based on how much hot water is generated per unit of fuel burned over a typical day.
The higher the EF, the more efficient the water heater is. Here is what goes into the EF rating:
Recovery efficiency: How efficiently the heat is applied to the water
Standby loss: The percentage of heat loss per hour of the stored water
Cycling loss: The loss of heat as the water circulates through the unit
There are so many things to appreciate about pets. They provide us with love. They keep us entertained. They’re there for us when we need them.
Pets can also shed dander and fur, which contribute to allergy symptoms and other respiratory issues. The fur and dander may be carried into your home’s HVAC system, where they get circulated throughout your Central Massachusetts home.
Pets shed more in the summer months. That’s why we’ve created a list of suggestions to help you keep your pets and HVAC system happy while also keeping your home comfortable and sneeze-free.
Brushing and combing your pet on a regular basis will help to decrease shedding. Determine the best technique for brushing and grooming your pet with the advice of your veterinarian.
Pet fur and dander can enter your home’s air, where they are then carried into your HVAC filter. When the filter becomes blocked, your HVAC system must work harder. This can result in increased energy consumption as well as equipment failure. Check your HVAC air filter once a month, or more often if someone in the home has allergies or a breathing illness like asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Consider using HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filters if your HVAC system can use them.
Pets’ fur and dander can get into your vents. The simplest approach to prevent this is to vacuum your vents on a regular basis and clean them with a damp microfiber cloth. Dust, dander, and fur are attracted to and trapped by flooring, carpeting, and rugs. Vacuum and/or mop them at least once a week.
Pioneer Oil and Propane service technicians provide annual HVAC maintenance to ensure that your HVAC system is in optimal operating condition. This also allows us to see whether your dogs’ fur and dander are the sources of any problems, allowing us to address them before they get worse.
When your ductwork collects a lot of fur and dander as well as dust, it can become a breeding ground for germs and viruses. Every three to five years, have your ductwork cleaned by an expert.
You can trust Pioneer Oil and Propane for all your HVAC needs! Get in touch with us to learn more about our equipment services.
Have you been enjoying all the grilling that comes with warmer weather here in Central Massachusetts?
A propane grill is an ideal way to elevate your home grilling. A propane grill can be modified to include a side burner, multiple levels of grilling surface, a smoker attachment, a rotisserie, and more!
Did you know that you can have your propane grill connected to your home’s propane tank? You’ll never have to worry again about an empty propane cylinder bringing your cookout to a screeching halt. And if you do that, with reliable propane delivery from Pioneer Oil and Propane, you’ll always have the propane you need to make your backyard a cookout destination!
Grilling with charcoal takes time and effort, your life is busy enough without adding more of those. It all starts with lugging out the bag of charcoal and filling the grill or chimney. Then you might have to wait half an hour for the coals to be ready for grilling.
That’s only the beginning. After your meal is finished, you must still deal with the ashes, which will most certainly get on your hands and clothes.
Propane is also easier to use when grilling. Simply open the supply valve, turn on the burners, push in the igniter, and you’re ready to cook in just a couple of minutes. Cleanup is also much easier. When you’re done grilling, turn everything off, quickly clean the grates, and you’re done.
There is no alternative to a propane grill when it comes to temperature control: it provides precise and immediate control. You can change the flame simply by rotating a knob so the food is grilled perfectly.
Propane is also superior to charcoal in terms of the food that comes off the grill.
Because you have precise temperature control, your performance will be far better. Your steak will be medium-rare perfection. The pork tenderloin will be cooked to a safe temperature without drying out.
Grilling with propane allows the tastes of your food to come through instead of being masked by smoke. Fish, fruit, and other meals have more vibrant flavors and seasonings.
Propane can do a lot for your outdoor living. Get in touch with us to learn more!
We know many of you are looking at energy cost increases and wondering when this will end, and we don’t blame you. Our goal is to keep you in the loop as much as possible, even though the situation remains very fluid.
Last week, our suppliers again raised prices by more than 65 cents per gallon over a few days. The reasons are complicated and seem to be affecting heating oil and diesel fuel much more than gasoline.
The driving factor is that heating oil in our area is in short supply now. In fact, if you look at prices on the commodities exchanges, they show heating oil at a dollar less than we can get it! That never happens. It’s called “basis blowout” and reflects a disconnect between the markets and actual supplies.
The good news is that the supply issues are happening because the markets expect heating oil prices to go lower by a fair amount over the next several months. Fuel suppliers are reluctant to purchase fuel now and get stuck with higher-priced product. The bad news is that it is causing prices to be artificially higher now, and no one really knows for sure what will happen with the Ukraine war. By the way, we are seeing the same kind of surges in natural gas and electric costs.
We decided to hold off most deliveries except for those customers who seemed to be running low. It didn’t help that we’ve had an unusually cold spring, and people are still using their heat. Beyond that, we want to urge people to get on our budget billing program, which allows us to spread your fuel payments over 11 months. If prices stay high next year, it will be much easier to manage your bills if you don’t have to pay for all of your deliveries in just five months of fall and winter.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to call our office. We are here for you.
Updated March 11, 2022
Unsurprisingly, we’ve been getting many calls around two connected issues: the surge in fuel prices and supply concerns. People are astounded by how much prices have risen and how fast. So are we. They are also concerned that there will be interruptions in supply that will cause them to run out of fuel.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine shocked energy markets, sending crude oil to record territory and spiking all energy prices. We’ve had increases from our heating oil suppliers of over $1.25 per gallon in less than a week. Propane prices have been better but still increased over 40 cents per gallon. And the situation remains very fluid.
We don’t know where things will go from here. One thing we can tell you is that we hate this as much as you do. Some people are under the misconception that when prices rise, we make more money. The opposite is true. People cut back usage. They have trouble paying their bills, and our receivables skyrocket. It is an awful mess for everyone.
One thing you can count on is that we will not let you run out. We have been in business for many years and have very strong relationships with suppliers and financial institutions. We are already getting calls from customers who are with other companies that can’t say the same. These customers are unable to get deliveries for 20 days out. You don’t have to worry about that with us.
If you are having trouble paying your bill, talk to us before it becomes a problem. Many times, we can work out something to give you more time, especially if you’ve been with us a while. We can also set you up on a monthly payment plan.
Nothing will make us happier than when prices start dropping. Until then, trust us to look out for you, and let’s pray for the people of Ukraine.
You may be familiar with Pioneer Oil & Propane for its exceptional fuel delivery and equipment maintenance. However, our unique programs go above and beyond.
Several of them allow you to skip the wait and worry for your heating oil and propane delivery and equipment service, giving you peace of mind.
When it comes to receiving your home’s propane and heating oil, this is the most customized service available. That’s because Automatic Delivery is tailored to your home’s specific fuel needs. We use your fuel usage history as well as current weather conditions to determine when you’ll require extra heating oil or propane. We schedule your delivery early so you don’t have to worry, based on the data. Your delivery time is reserved.
Our affordable service plans are another way you can be a priority customer. Each of our service plans comes with a tune-up every year. Also, if something goes wrong, you receive priority emergency service 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Even if your heating system conks out in the middle of the night, one of our skilled and experienced service technicians will be there promptly to get it up and running again.
When you join our popular cost and payment plans for propane and heating oil, you’ll be able to end the hassles of huge delivery invoices and yo-yoing monthly fuel expenses.
Because your expenses are spread out over 12 easy and inexpensive payments, our monthly Smart Pay payment plan provides you stability when it comes to how much you’ll be paying for your propane or heating oil each month.
When you use paperless billing, there are no more worries about your statement being lost in the mail! Because we send your statement to your email inbox, you’ll never have to worry about it again.
There’s no need to write a check, find a stamp, drop your payment in the mail and hope it arrives before the due date if you use Auto Pay. With Auto Pay, you don’t have to worry about making your bill payments on time because they’ll be deducted from your checking account or credit card automatically. With Auto Pay, you can rest assured that each payment will arrive on schedule.
Get in touch with us today to learn more about and enroll in these programs so you can enjoy premium service!
At Pioneer Oil and Propane, reliability is the heart at everything we do, whether it’s fuel delivery or equipment installation and service. We strive every day to be the company you can count on.
However, we must rely on your assistance in keeping our promise that we will deliver your propane and heating oil to you as soon as possible. That help includes making sure that we can safely get down your driveway and to your fuel tank.
If our delivery person is unable to safely access your propane and heating oil tank, they will not be able to fill it. That could land you in a bind if you run low on fuel as a result.
In the winter, it means keeping your driveway clear of snow and ice, as well as maintaining a clear path at least one foot wide to your tank. Obstacles and safety concerns remain after the snow melts, however, and we value your help in ensuring that our propane and heating oil deliveries are safe and regular.
Here are some methods for ensuring that we can always deliver your propane and heating oil on time.
Schedule a fuel delivery before your tank falls below 25% full. Doing this avoids the need for emergency propane or heating oil delivery. The fewer emergency deliveries we need to make, the more time we can keep our delivery schedule on track. If you enroll in Automatic Delivery, you’ll never have to worry about this again!
Make sure your driveway and tank are accessible. Do you have a driveway gate? The day of your scheduled delivery, make sure the gate is open for us. Remove bikes, scooters, toys, and any other objects from the driveway and the route to your propane or heating oil tank. Also, don’t forget to clean any pet waste from the path leading to your tank; it might cause slippage when the delivery person is carrying that heavy hose to your tank.
Keep pets and children away. Our drivers are operating big trucks that can’t always come to a halt on a dime. Pets running nearby may cause a fall when the delivery guy is bringing the hose from and back to your tank. The hose might also be hazardous for youngsters because they may trip on it.
Become a Pioneer Oil and Propane customer and get the most reliable fuel delivery service in Central Massachusetts!
Spring has finally arrived here in Central Massachusetts, and we’ve been enjoying getting out for walks, bike rides, picnics, and visits with loved ones. However, we should do one task to be ready for next winter: contact Pioneer Oil & Propane today to schedule your heating system’s annual maintenance tune-up.
“Why would I need to get the tune-up now when I won’t have to turn on the heat again until fall?” you might be wondering. There are good reasons for this advice.
Convenience is a popular incentive. In the HVAC industry, this is known as a “shoulder season.” Because the heating season has ended and air conditioning season hasn’t started yet, our service department isn’t receiving calls for furnace or boiler repairs. We can provide a maintenance tune-up at a time that is convenient for you as long as we have a more flexible schedule this season. If our trained specialists identify an issue, it may be quickly fixed.
Another benefit is that you won’t have to worry about the next heating season. Cold snaps early in the fall may catch you off guard. Having your boiler or furnace maintenance service now will guarantee that it is prepared when you need it. It will also run at its best possible efficiency, resulting in lower energy costs.
Did you know that our heating system service plans can help you save up to 10% on your heating expenses each year? This is because a well-maintained furnace or boiler performs more efficiently than an unmaintained one.
Each of our affordable service plans comes with a comprehensive tune-up once per year. Regular maintenance is also an investment in your heating equipment since it extends the life expectancy of your boiler or furnace.
We provide numerous extra services with each plan, including priority emergency service 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If you lose heat, we’ll be there for you right away. You also get almost parts and repair coverage for the majority of your home’s heating system, which may help you save money if something goes wrong.
Contact Pioneer Oil & Propane today to schedule your heating system’s annual maintenance tune-up and enroll in one of our service plans!