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How Propane Influences Home Market Prices

home value energy virginiaWhen it comes to home value, you may not be able to change the location, but you can do a variety of things to add value. Boosting curb appeal with a nice door or a welcoming porch and good landscaping are easy DIY projects. Making sure your heating systems are efficient and upgrading appliances is another good way to increase the value of your home and make it stand out if you’re looking to sell.

While it’s not usually featured on the home makeover shows because it’s not “eye candy,” considering the systems and fuels that run your new home can be undeniably important. If you’ve never lived in a propane-fueled home before, you might be surprised to know all the benefits. Propane is one of the cleanest, most versatile, and most efficient fuels around. It’s a domestically sourced alternative fuel that can provide exceptional performance and efficiency in a wide range of home appliances, as well as heating and water-heating equipment, at a much lower cost than electricity.

Truth be told, propane may not have an overwhelming influence on the price of your home, but it can affect the comfort of the buyer in many ways. Let’s get you familiar with all those benefits it can bring:

Propane is More Efficient

Propane generates more Btus than an equivalent amount of electricity, so you need much less propane to produce the same amount of heat or energy. That means propane appliances are very efficient, so they waste very little fuel in the combustion process. On the other hand, about two-thirds of the energy used by a power plant to generate and transmit electricity is wasted.

In other words, propane is a win-win for customers who care about the environment, but also want to keep costs under control. 

Propane is Very Versatile

Because propane is so efficient, it’s a smarter choice than electricity for a wide variety of appliances. For example, propane water heaters generate much more hot water at a cheaper cost per gallon. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, homes that heat water with propane rather than electricity can see average annual savings of $174 or more.

The same technology that makes propane ideal for water heaters makes it a smarter choice than electricity to power all kinds of appliances that use hot water or heat:

  • Clothes washers and dryers
  • Dishwashers
  • Outdoor lighting
  • Patio heaters
  • Pool and spa-tub heaters
  • Outdoor grills

…and many more!

What’s another benefit that adds value? When storms knock out power, a propane-fueled backup generator will keep your lights and everything else running until the utility companies can make repairs. Many insurance plans will offer discounts on your homeowner’s insurance plan if you install a standby generator. That’s because, like a security system, a generator helps protect your property. SWVA Gas Service can help run the necessary lines for your new backup system. Give us a call today to learn more!

Gas Cooking is a Preferred Choice

There’s a reason gas is the choice of professional chefs, hands down. The high degree of control and precise temperatures you get with a gas range can’t be beaten—and propane grills offer the same control, plus are much cleaner and easier to use. Want to really pump up the value of your home: Consider an outdoor kitchen with a built-in grill!

Propane Has a Strong Safety Record, too.

When it comes to environmental impact, propane gas is a good choice. It burns cleanly and produces minimal emissions. Propane also doesn’t harm soil or groundwater – an important factor when it comes to determining whether fuel is “green.”

Propane leaks are easy to detect due to their strong rotten egg odor (thanks to the Ethyl Mercaptan that manufacturers add to the naturally odorless gas). If you detect the odor of propane, know what to do. Additionally, propane will not ignite until the air reaches 940° F. In fact, propane has the lowest flammability range of all alternative fuels. There must be a very specific combination of propane and oxygen for propane to burn. 

The Value Proposition

Whether you are refurbishing your existing home, building your dream house, or just looking for ways to reduce your fuel bills, propane provides great value. The team of Pros at SWVA Gas Service can help make adding propane to your New River, Radford, Roanoke, or Christiansburg area home easy, with great services like automatic delivery, tank monitoring, smart payment plans to help keep costs manageable and so much more.

Contact us today for more information.

SWVA Gas Service Customers Can Benefit from these User-Friendly Options

fuel delivery virginiaWhen it comes to service, we’re always looking for ways to make it easy for you. For a half-century, we’ve been serving communities in the New River Valley through good times and bad. We know how much the recent price spikes are hurting everyone—it hurts us too. But while we can’t control the supply chain or the geopolitics that are driving propane prices higher, we can offer our customers ways to take the sting out of propane prices—and make their day-to-day a little easier too.

Stop Those Big Winter Fuel Bills

Our Budget Plan is a smart way to manage propane costs and eliminate unexpected high invoices, no matter how cold it gets or how much fuel you use. Customers love this plan even when prices are low.

  • By using an average based on your past propane consumption, we spread your costs evenly over 12 months. The result? Winter bills that are nearly 50% lower. And because you are paying the same amount each month, it’s easier for you to budget your expenses.

The point is to keep your fuel costs level and manageable, so even if we have a particularly harsh winter or prices spike, you’ll avoid big fluctuations and surprise high bills.

Automatic Deliveries Help You Avoid Propane Runouts

We know you’re busy. Life is more hectic than ever. The last thing you need is an extra item on your to-do list. That’s where our convenient, free Automatic Delivery service can help.

It’s not hard to run down to run outside to check the gauge on your propane tank…but it’s an easy task to forget. The next thing you know, you’ve run out of fuel. Automatic deliveries mean you don’t have to remember to check your tank or schedule propane deliveries because we’ll do it for you. You don’t even need to be home on delivery day! You also eliminate the potential need—and cost—of a pressure test if your propane tank goes completely empty.

Like the way we calculate your Budget Plan, we use an algorithm based on your average usage patterns and the weather conditions to calculate when to schedule your deliveries to make sure you always have propane. Automatic Deliveries also means better service. When customers enroll in automatic delivery, it helps us schedule our fuel delivery routes efficiently so we can serve more of our customers on any given day. That also helps us keep costs down.

Ready to sign up for savings and convenience? Contact us today for more information.

Get Ready for a Summer That Sizzles.

gas grills virginiaSummer is the peak season for outdoor entertaining—or maybe it’s just about getting out of the kitchen! In either case, if you’ve been thinking your grilling game is ready for an upgrade, SWVA Gas Service is here to help add some new sizzle to your deck or patio. Now’s the perfect time to get set up to make outdoor gatherings fun and easy.

What’s So Great About Cooking with Gas?

A propane grill offers unparalleled control, plus a wide range of accessories and add-ons such as multilevel grills, griddle attachments, side burners, rotisserie, and more. Free-standing cart-style propane grills can offer almost as many options for smaller spaces. Whether you’re looking to create a deluxe outdoor kitchen and entertaining space, or just need to replace your old grill, SWVA offers a full range of Broilmaster grills from basic, classic styles to deluxe built-in units.

In addition to the precise temperature control that comes with a propane grill, you also enjoy ease and convenience. No waiting for the charcoal to heat up; no watching to make sure they stay hot. In just minutes, your grill is ready to go. Food comes out great, with no smoky smell or flavor that can overwhelm foods such as fish or fruit.

And cleanup is made easy as well. No ashes, no worries about smoldering coals. When you’re done, just turn off the grill and the gas supply, do a quick cleaning of the grates and you’re good to go.

Sales, Service, and Reliable Propane Delivery

With a built-in propane grill and reliable propane delivery from SWVA, you’ll always be ready to go—no running out of charcoal—and our experienced propane service technicians will safely and properly connect any new built-in gas grill to your home’s propane supply.

Prefer to use a propane cylinder? Take advantage of our convenient cylinder refilling station at our office in Radford. Let SWVA help you make your backyard a destination. Stop by our showroom or contact us for more information today.

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 propane suppliers of over 40 cents per gallon already, and that might be out of date by the time you read this.  

What’s Coming Next?

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. Meanwhile, we must pay our suppliers in just ten days. We must borrow much more from the bank. It is an awful mess for everyone.

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. 

Here’s What You Need to Know if You’re Moving from Electricity to Propane Gas!

converting to propane virginiaLooking back a few decades, it’s commonplace that many of us grew up with homes heated by either heating oil or electric heat. So, the idea of fueling a home with propane might seem odd. After all, isn’t propane for grills and camping or recreation? As the cost of oil remains unpredictable, many homeowners are looking for a domestic fuel source with less volatile prices. Others are wondering if oil is the greenest choice. And once they learn more about propane gas, most people are discovering all the benefits it has to offer!

Why Should I Choose Propane?

Propane is one of the cleanest, most versatile, and most efficient fuels around. It’s a domestically-sourced alternative fuel that can provide steady, reliable heat at an affordable price. Propane also offers exceptional performance and efficiency in a wide range of home appliances at a much lower cost than electricity.

Here are five things you may not have known about propane, and why so many customers in Southwestern Virginia are making the switch:

  1. Propane is Clean—and Green: When it comes to environmental impact, propane gas is a great choice. It burns cleanly and produces minimal emissions. Propane also doesn’t harm soil or groundwater – an important factor when it comes to determining whether a fuel is “green.”

    Propane is also made in the U.S.A. Propane is an American energy source. About 90% of the United States’ supply of propane is domestically generated, most of which comes from the processing of natural gas.

  2. Propane is More Efficient: Propane generates more Btus than an equivalent amount of electricity, so you need much less propane to produce the same amount of heat or energy. Also, propane appliances are very efficient as well, so they waste very little fuel in the combustion process. On the other hand, about two-thirds of the energy used by a power plant to generate and transmit electricity is wasted.

    In other words, propane can offer more bang for your buck, all while protecting the environment. It’s a win-win for customers who care about the environment but also want to keep costs under control!

  3. Propane is Versatile: Because propane is so efficient, it’s a smarter choice than electricity for a wide variety of appliances, in addition to heating your home. For example, propane water heaters generate much more hot water at a cheaper cost per gallon. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, homes that heat water with propane rather than electricity can see average annual savings of $174.

    The same technology that makes propane ideal for water heaters makes it a smarter choice than electricity to power all kinds of appliances that use hot water or heat:

    • Clothes washers and dryers
    • Dishwashers
    • Outdoor lighting
    • Patio heaters
    • Pool and spa-tub heaters
    • Outdoor grills
  4. Propane is Low Maintenance: Unlike heating oil, which is, well, oily, propane is a gas that doesn’t leave residue. As a result, propane equipment is easier to maintain. There’s less wear and tear, so equipment lasts longer and has fewer breakdowns.

    Similarly, oil leaks are extremely messy and expensive to clean up. While oil and gas are both potentially flammable in the event of a leak, oil leaks are extremely messy and very costly to clean up. That’s why many insurance companies offer a lower rate to customers who switch from oil to propane fuel for their furnaces.

  5. Propane for Peace of Mind: When storms knock out power, a propane-fueled backup generator will keep your lights and everything else running until the utility companies can make repairs. In addition, a gas stove will continue to work during a power outage. Now that’s convenient.

Whether you’re ready to make the switch, or have more questions, the professionals at Southwest Virginia Gas Service have the knowledge, experience, and resources to answer all your questions about the benefits of a propane-heated home. And we can get you started with the right size propane tank for your needs, reliable propane delivery and more! Contact us for more information today.

Here’s Why Commercial Propane is a Smart Choice!

propane supplier virginiaDid you know propane is a versatile and affordable fuel for an extensive range of commercial and industrial uses? Because propane burns both incredibly hot—and incredibly clean—commercial propane appliances and heating systems prove to be highly efficient, with ratings well into the 90s. With that kind of performance, choosing propane is a great decision for your business operations when compared to other alternatives. 

From the agriculture sector to manufacturing, businesses throughout Southwestern Virginia rely on the expert team at SWVA Gas Service for all their commercial propane needs, from set up to routine deliveries.

Here are some of the ways propane might be able to work for your specific business:

Forklifts

Whether you’re getting merchandise off trucks and onto shelves, or moving building materials quickly and efficiently around worksites, forklifts are essential for many businesses.
Propane-powered forklifts are workhorses that take minutes to refuel with a new cylinder rather than hours to recharge. They also run at full power until the tank is empty and are safe to use indoors or out. Plus, they give off far fewer emissions than diesel powered options.

Manufacturing & Construction

Propane’s versatility is a plus on any job site. In addition to forklifts, it can be used to power all kinds of equipment on your construction site, including:

  • Welding equipment
  • Commercial mowers
  • Asphalt heaters
  • Concrete grinders, saws, polishers, trowels, and dust extractors
  • Pressure washers
  • Small cranes
  • Water pumps
  • Floor buffers

Agriculture

Farmers can use propane for a broad range of applications, including:

  • Drying crops
  • Warming greenhouses
  • Heating barns
  • Powering equipment
  • Chemical-free weed control

Commercial Kitchens & the Hospitality Industry

Professional chefs appreciate the control they get cooking with propane. But it also is an efficient and eco-friendly option for water heating for dishwashing and commercial laundries.

  • Restaurants
  • Schools
  • Churches
  • Hotels
  • Nursing homes
  • Hospitals

Let SWVA Gas Service be your partner for all your commercial and industrial propane needs! As a locally-owned and operated company, we bring local knowledge and familiarity with area regulations, permitting, and more. We can help you assess your needs to get the best value from propane for your business and install any systems your need and provide reliable propane deliveries to make sure your operation runs smoothly. Contact us today for more information.

The Pros and Cons of Going Tankless

water heater options virginiaYou don’t give it much thought until it breaks down, but your water heater works extremely hard for you day-in and day-out. Between bathing and showering, washing dishes, laundry, cleaning and other tasks, the typical American household uses between 60 and 65 gallons of hot water a day! And that nonstop workload can take a toll. The life expectancy for a conventional water heater with a tank is between 8 and 10 years.

If you have a traditional tank-style water heater that’s approaching—or already has surpassed—the ten-year mark, you may be seeing higher energy bills, or water that just doesn’t seem to get as hot. And we all know that a lukewarm shower is not the best way to start the day.

Thinking it’s time to replace your water heater? You should also weigh your options when it comes to going tankless!

What’s a Tankless Water Heater?

Tankless propane water heaters—also known as on-demand water heaters—instantly heat water when you need it, rather than keeping a large tank hot all the time. Imagine having virtually unlimited hot water, while seeing lower fuel bills. It’s possible, with a high-efficiency tankless water heater. In addition to whole-house models, smaller versions can be installed where they are needed to generate hot water for an addition or for a spa tub, for example.

Here are the pros of going tankless

  1. Unlimited Hot Water: Traditional tank heaters can run out of hot water if you use a lot at once. Tankless water heaters use an electric pilot and a hot propane flame to heat water instantly, on-demand. There’s no tank, so it can’t hit empty!
  2. Savings: Tankless water heaters save energy by instantly heating water when you need it, rather than keeping a large tank hot all the time. All that efficiency means you’ll also save money by lowering your energy costs by as much as 40%.
  3. Flexibility: With no storage tank, a tankless water heater is small—even whole-house sizes take considerably less room than a 55-gallon tank. Most are about the size of a suitcase. It can also be wall-mounted, which means a tankless water heater can be placed just about anywhere in the house, including closets and crawl spaces.
  4. Longer Equipment Life: The primary culprit in the limited lifespan of a conventional water heater is the corrosive water stored in its tank. Because it doesn’t store water, a tankless water heater will last 18 to 20 years.

Are There Downsides of Going Tankless?

Although they save you money in the long run, tankless water heaters are more expensive to buy and install. In addition, they require a little maintenance, particularly if you have hard water. Deposits and minerals can reduce performance and efficiency if you don’t flush the tank at least once a year and clean the filters.

Sticking with a Tank Style Water Heater

A traditional tank-style water heater is inexpensive to replace but costs a lot more to run. And it can’t really deliver enough hot water for more than two or three showers in a row, assuming no one is washing dishes or using hot water for anything else.

If your home has a basement, space may not be an issue. But if you don’t have a basement, that big tank uses a lot of valuable real estate in your home. Imagine what you could do with that closet space…

Don’t Take Hot Water for Granted!

Whether you decide to stick with a traditional tank-style water heater or update with a highly efficient tankless model, don’t wait for your water heater to fail to replace it! Like other essential equipment in your home, such as your refrigerator, you don’t want to go long without it.

Want to learn more about the benefits of a tankless water heater for your southwestern Virginia home? The pros at SWVA can help you choose the best option for your needs. Enjoy energy efficiency and all the hot water you need with a new water heater! Contact us or visit our Radford showroom today to get started. 

Keep Safe with These Useful, Year-Round Propane Tips

propane leak virginiaPropane is a clean-burning and safe way to heat your Southern Virginia home, water, and run many household appliances. But propane is also a highly flammable gas under certain conditions. As with any fuel, there are certain steps to take to ensure you and your home are kept safe and comfortable. Leaks are rare, but they can happen. Knowing what to do if you smell gas can help ensure the situation is resolved safely and quickly. Here’s what you need to know:

Gas Leaks

Propane has a distinct rotten-egg smell to help you quickly notice leaking gas. Make sure everyone in your home can recognize the odor. If you smell gas:

  • Leave the area immediately
  • Avoid all flames or sparks—including lights, appliances, phones, or cell phones—which could ignite the gas.
  • If you can, shut off the gas at the main valve on your tank—turn the valve clockwise until tight to do so.
  • Call us, or 911 from a safe area.
  • Stay away until help arrives

Propane Safety Dos and Don’ts

  • Don’t store cleaning fluids and flammable substances near your propane tanks.
  • Don’t let your tanks run empty. The loss of pressure can lead to a variety of problems and will require pressure tests before refilling.
  • Don’t attempt to relight a pilot light if you smell gas. If you do relight a pilot light yourself, follow manufacturer’s instructions exactly as written.
  • Do clean furnace filters regularly.
  • Do set up automatic delivery to avoid running out of gas.
  • Do call us if a pilot light goes out frequently.
  • Do let us know if flames are yellow or you notice a significant amount of soot. Gas flames should be mainly blue when burning correctly.

Safety First—Always!

At SWVA, your safety is always our priority. All our technicians follow the highest safety standards for all your propane deliveries, and we invest in ongoing training to keep them up to date in the latest technologies and safety protocols available.

You can find links to more propane safety information on our propane safety page.

Remember that carbon monoxide is a dangerous gas produced no matter what type of fuel you use. It is odorless and tasteless, but high levels can be deadly. Be sure you have carbon monoxide detectors installed throughout your home—in addition to smoke detectors—and change the batteries twice a year. You can also install propane leak detectors, too. They’re inexpensive and easy to install—and can help detect a propane leak before you notice the smell.

If you have any questions about this information or any other propane safety issues, please don’t hesitate to contact us right away.

Should You Consider Switching to Auto Delivery This Season?

propane delivery virginiaWith a chill in the air, and more chills coming with Halloween right around the corner, it’s time for Will-Call customers to fill their tanks and consider switching to Automatic Delivery for the season ahead—which helps bring peace of mind to any household.

Since 1945, SWVA Gas Service has built a reputation of providing our customers with reliable propane delivery, and installation and servicing of appliances in a large portion of Southwestern Virginia. We have a long history of giving families warmth, savings and safety. We’re a locally owned and operated propane provider, so we know our neighbors and go to great lengths to keep them happy!

To our loyal customers, we provide safe and steady propane delivery to homes, businesses, and farms, featuring honest pricing, and top-notch sales and installation of high-level propane appliances. At SWVA, customer satisfaction is always our No. 1 priority.

Automatic Delivery Makes Things Easy!

SWVA likes to remove the guesswork for our clients and keep things simple. You’re all busy enough: Let us do the work regarding your propane access.

A big part of this simplicity is to enroll in our Automatic Delivery! After joining our popular program, the days of heading outside in messy weather to check your propane gauge levels—or forgetting to check them to begin with—are a thing of the past. You also won’t have to contact us to set deliveries, fret over running low on fuel or shell out extra money for an emergency propane delivery. Who wants to deal with any of that?

As Will-Call customers, YOU are responsible for consistently checking your propane usage and tank gauge levels, then contacting SWVA to schedule a delivery when you need it. Right now, that also means getting the best possible rate, as the volatile fuel market has pushed prices across the industry to the highest levels in years. And, as we’ve all seen or dealt with once before, fuel always seems to run low at the worst possible time, like around the holidays or right before overnight guests arrive at your house.

SWVA Gas Service also offers multiple payment options to meet all budgets, tank and appliance installations, simple online payment methods, and outstanding, caring customer service representatives to fulfill your needs.

Reach out to SWVA Gas Service and let us be your trustworthy propane delivery company this season and for those well-beyond! Need a fill-up? Call us today—we’ll be happy to help.

Versatile Log Sets Can Go Just About Anywhere!

gas firplace installation virginiaThere’s nothing quite like the cozy feeling you get when you’re lounging in front of your fireplace on a cold or rainy night here in the New River Valley area of Southern Virginia.

However, it’s fair to assume that many of us don’t want to deal with the work of a wood fire—especially after a busy workday. Think about it! First, you must bring in the wood from outside. Then you must build the fire itself and wait for it to get going before you can finally get to relax in front of it.

Even after all that work, you’re not done yet! After you extinguish the fire, you have the messy job of cleaning up all the ashes and soot.

What’s easier? You can avoid all of this work and worry by adding propane-powered gas logs to your home this fall!

With a propane gas log set, you can have a fire in your fireplace any time you want it. Just push a button or flip a switch and your work is done! You can sit back and enjoy the realistic look of today’s propane gas logs and its flames. When you’re done, just turn off the fireplace and that’s it. No cleanup, no work, no worries!

Enjoy the Versatility of Gas Logs

Propane gas logs aren’t only designed to fit in fireplaces. Gas logs can also be used in gas outdoor fireplaces, a gas insert in your masonry fireplace, a propane fireplace, or a freestanding propane stove.

SWVA Gas Service sells and installs top-quality gas logs from leading manufacturers. Our in-house propane appliance experts can help you choose the right type, size, and style of gas logs to fit your appliance—and your budget. Our gas logs offer realistic looks and styles of woods such as oak, aspen, birch, cherry and more.

Once you’ve made your selection, our trained and experienced service technicians will safely and expertly install your new gas logs—just in time for the holiday season!

Propane Gas Fireplace Options

If you don’t have an existing masonry or brick fireplace in your home, you can still get that charming ambiance with direct vent and vent-free propane fireplaces.

A propane gas fireplace is easy to install. You can incorporate the ambiance and warmth into virtually any room, including kitchens and dining rooms as well as living rooms and family rooms. Create your dream master suite or a spa-like bathroom escape just by adding a gas fireplace. You can also convert a traditional fireplace to a maintenance-free propane hearth with a gas insert.

We have a wide and attractive selection of styles to complement any décor, from traditional to rustic to contemporary.

Read more about propane gas logs and fireplaces by visiting our website, today! Or contact us today for more information.