Propane FAQs

What is propane?

Propane — sometimes known as liquefied petroleum gas, or LPG — is a gas normally compressed and stored as a liquid. It is nontoxic, colorless, and virtually odorless; an identifying odor (ethyl mercaptan) is added so it can be detected. Propane is commonly used for space and water heating, for cooking, and as fuel for engine applications such as forklifts, farm irrigation engines, fleet vehicles, and buses; however, its applications are rapidly growing due to new technology developments. When used as vehicle fuel, propane is known as propane AutoGas.

Propane is an abundant, clean-burning, domestic fuel that is a key component in Pennsylvania’s energy portfolio.  Propane is an environmentally friendly clean fuel listed in the 1990 Clean Air Act as well as the National Energy Policy Act of 1992.  

Where does propane come from?

Propane is primarily a byproduct of domestic natural gas processing, though some propane is produced from crude oil refinement. U.S. propane supplies are becoming increasingly abundant due in large part to increased supplies of natural gas.

  • As shale gas extraction has increased, the production of propane from crude oil refinement has dropped dramatically. In 2011, 69 percent of the total U.S. supply of propane came from natural gas liquids produced in the U.S. and Canada.
  • Strong growth in propane supply is expected to come from the Marcellus shale play in the northeastern U.S. Industry observers estimate the Marcellus shale alone can supply more than two billion gallons of propane per year.
  • Because of the drastic increase in U.S. sources of propane, the U.S. produces more than enough propane to meet current demand and became a net exporter of propane in 2011.

Who uses propane?

Propane is used by homeowners, businesses, and organizations. Many industries are increasingly choosing propane to cost-effectively fuel vehicles and equipment while lowering emissions. Propane can be used to power a variety of applications and equipment for residential and commercial construction, on road vehicles, landscape management, material handling, and agricultural needs.

Can propane be used as the energy source in my home?

Yes. Propane is used for home heating and water heating, indoor and outdoor cooking, clothes drying, fireplaces, backup power, and outdoor living. With an all-propane home, you’ll enjoy greater efficiency and energy savings compared with all-electric homes. Propane also offers comfort, reliability, and peace of mind for your family. 

Find the right energy solution for your next project by browsing the web’s largest directory of propane products.

Once you’ve selected the products you want, contact your local propane supplier to discuss purchase and next steps for installation.

How is propane distributed?

With over 300,000 miles of transmission pipelines, propane is widely available and easily portable. There is more than 3,100 propane retail stations nationwide, propane is widely available and easily portable. 

How does the propane industry in Pennsylvania contribute to the economy?

The Pennsylvania Propane Industry is responsible for adding almost $2 million to Pennsylvania’s economy, and providing nearly 3,200 jobs throughout the Commonwealth. Furthermore, we supply propane to slightly over 667 thousand customers with more than 568 thousand homes in Pennsylvania choosing propane as their energy source in home heating. Propane has a wide array of applications, including residential and commercial space heating, appliances, outdoor living, alternative transportation fuel (Propane AutoGas), landscape management, and multiple agricultural and farm uses.