When a winter storm is in the forecast, plenty of people swarm the grocery store to stock up on batteries, water, and milk. (Some may throw in extra chocolate and a bottle of wine.) Often forgotten in the rush to be prepared is your home heating source. Here is what we recommend you do to prepare:
In the middle of a snowy blizzard or in the depth of a Polar Vortex is not the time to run out of fuel. Be sure you sign up for automatic fuel delivery and, with Dead River Company, you’re guaranteed to have the fuel you need. If you aren’t able to take advantage of automatic delivery, it’s always a good idea to try to keep at least a quarter of a tank of fuel, whether you use propane or home heating oil. Keep a close eye on your tank and call whenever it gets below 25%. This will give you enough time to receive a delivery on the day the truck is already scheduled to be in your area.
Even propane, oil, or kerosene furnaces need electricity to operate, so if you have alternative heat sources, make sure those are ready too. Got a fireplace, wood or pellet stove? Make sure you have fuel on hand to keep them running for at least a couple of days.
A propane powered generator can also be a savior if the power goes out. Make sure it’s been professionally installed, with a double-throw safety switch. And NEVER run a portable generator inside your home or garage.
If you don’t have a back-up heat source, make sure you know where local, emergency shelters are, just in case.
If the forecast is calling for deep snow, be sure you mark your propane tank location with a flag, pole, or stake that is higher than the expected snow depth. The markers will help you avoid shoveling—or worse, plowing—too close to the tank. They can also keep you from pouring snow from the roof down onto the tank.
Once the weather clears, please remember that snow removal around your home includes clearing any heavy snow and ice from fuel tanks, appliances, chimneys, flue pipes, and vent connectors so they can vent and operate properly. Whenever possible, use a broom to clear off your tanks. Should you discover, or even suspect, any damage, don’t try to repair it on your own! Turn everything off and call a certified service technician.
Delivering fuel in the winter is challenging, so a clear pathway to your fuel tanks allowing easy access ensures timely delivery—and is deeply appreciated by our drivers!
Finally, we all know even the best preparations are sometimes no match for Mother Nature (or Murphy’s Law) and emergencies can arise. If you’re a Dead River Company customer in need of Emergency Service, please contact your local Dead River Company office. We guarantee to contact you within one hour of your after-hours call being placed.