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Grilling Safety: Propane BBQ Edition

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Grilled food can really hit the spot on nice Arizona days. Before you use your BBQ, make sure that you keep these grilling safety tips in mind. This helps ensure that you and your family can enjoy grilled dinners without any trouble.

Store Propane Tanks Properly

Grilling safety involves storing propane tanks properly. Tanks for gas grills can easily become a hazard. Store these tanks in a vertical and upright position. Also make sure they are kept far away from any heat or ignition sources, such as lighters or matches. If you have a gas line for your grill, you don’t have to deal with propane tanks at all.

Turn the Grill on Safely

Another important grilling safety tip is to make sure that you turn the grill on correctly. This involves opening the lid and turning the propane on. After this is done, turn the knobs for the burners, then push the ignition. Doing this the right way lowers the risk of fires and other accidents.

Never Use Lighter Fluid

Never use lighter fluid to ignite a gas grill. Lighter fluid is a major fire hazard when it isn’t used properly. You will avoid having to worry about this if you have a gas grill with its own natural gas line installed.

Check for Leaks

Gas leaks can occur when you use propane tanks for your grill. You should check for leaks by putting a solution of water and light soap on the gas tank hose. If you see bubbles, this means you have a gas leak that needs to be fixed by a professional right away. Grills with a gas line have a lower risk of ending up with these leaks.

Don’t Reignite Right Away

If your grill doesn’t ignite, don’t light it again right away. You could have gas in the air that needs time to clear out. Lighting it again immediately could result in a fire and serious injuries. Wait for 5 minutes before you try to ignite your gas grill again.

Keep Your Grill Clean

Grilling safety includes making sure that your gas grill stays in good condition. Grease and other debris can build up over time, which can increase the risk of a fire. Clean debris off your grill and from the tray under it. You should wait for your grill to cool before cleaning it. Getting into the habit of doing this after using your grill each time means you won’t have to scrape a lot of debris off later on.

Turn Your Grill Off Properly

When it comes to grilling safety, it’s important to ensure that you turn your grill off the right way. This reduces the risk of injuries and accidents. You’ll need to turn the gas tank off before shutting off the gas burners. Make sure that your propane cylinder valve is fully closed to prevent gas from leaking. With a gas line grill, all you have to do is shut it off without having to deal with any tanks.

If you’re ready to install a gas line for your grilling area, contact Forrest Anderson. We can ensure that this is done properly for your safety.

Portable heater buying guide for Phoenix

Taking the edge off the chill in a room or two by relying on a portable heater is a time-tested way to increase comfort when temperatures drop. While it’s effective, it’s not the most economical approach, since these heaters use far more electricity than the central heating and cooling system.

Cold rooms often indicate something’s amiss with the central heating and cooling system, and a portable heater is a good way to provide heat on a temporary basis.


A portable heater that uses electricity for heating is safer than unvented combustion heaters to use indoors. You’ll find electric heaters as

  • Towers
  • Boxy fan heaters
  • Radiator-style heaters
  • Parabolics
  • Pedestals

Safety Is Essential with a Portable Heater

  • More important than their shape, however, is their safety. If you have children or pets, choose a radiator-style portable heater. Even on high, it won’t get hot enough to burn tender skin. Regardless of the style, the heater should bear the UL (Underwriter’s Laboratory) label on its cord and packaging.
  • The heater should have an automatic shutoff switch in case it tips or falls over.
  • Avoid unvented gas, propane, or kerosene heaters altogether. You’re putting your safety in the hands of oxygen sensors and anti-tip switches that can fail.

Convenient Features to Consider

  • Thermostats on the heaters help you regulate the temperature in the room. It could be as simple as a dial that indicates low, medium and high heat.
  • Timers are not only convenient, they’re energy savers. Should you forget to turn off the heater off, the timer will do it for you.
  • Handles or wheels. Handles make moving them from room to room easier and more convenient.

Energy Efficient Options

There is no such thing as an energy efficient portable heater. The heater is likely to cost much more than heating the room with a heat pump or gas furnace will. Unless it’s a temporary measure, instead of investing in space heaters and paying top dollar for heating, consider using that money to find the cause behind those cold rooms.

The problem might lie with your HVAC system unless it’s inadequate insulation or a large air leak. A cold room in winter translates to a hot one in the summer. If the furnace isn’t working right, odds are the A/C won’t either. Investing the money into fixing the problem will pay you back now and in the summer with lower conditioning bills and a much more comfortable home.

Ductwork Issues

Although it could be a mechanical problem, more often than not, inadequate heating in a particular area is associated with ductwork design imbalances or distribution problems. Depending on the material from which they’re constructed, ductwork sections can break apart, kink, clog with excessive debris, or tear. Ductwork problems can occur at any time and homes of all ages are vulnerable.

Any of these signs can indicate ductwork leaks:

  • Cold temperatures in one or more rooms that are close together.
  • Dust or dirt that collects near a register cover on the wall or ceiling.
  • Low air pressure coming from the duct in a room when the HVAC system runs.

Leaking ducts waste tremendous amounts of energy since the air leaks into places where you don’t need it.

If you’d like more information about identifying HVAC issues that might be compelling you to use a portable heater for cold rooms, contact Forrest Anderson. We want to get people’s units working correctly so they’ll save money and have a unit that works all year round.

Consistent Room Temperature Problems?

Does this sound familiar? You’re in your bedroom and feel like you need to bundle up in your comforter to get warm. Whereas when you enter the kitchen, you’re too warm and open a window. In some homes, especially ones with two stories or a lot of square footage, it can be a challenge to maintain a consistent room temperature. Let’s explore some reasons for this dilemma, as well as ways to fix it.

Ductwork Problems

Your HVAC system is a complicated piece of equipment. A small problem might seem like a trivial thing, but it could lead to significant repercussions. Such is the case with the ductwork. The ducts are how air and heat flow through your home, so if they are the wrong size or blocked, you’ll end up with inconsistent room temperature. Even worse, improper-sized ducts can end up costing big bucks when the evaporator coils freeze up or overheat.

And what if your ducts are leaking? You can lose up to 30% of airflow due to leaks and cracks. Of course, the leaks could be at any place along with ductwork, which will result in differing temperatures across the house.

Solution: Have your ductwork inspected to ensure it fits and is in good working order.

Older, Insufficient Insulation

Do you have an older home? While historic homes are charming, they can lack some of the creature comforts we tend to take for granted in newer construction. One big thing that can cause a ton of grief is insufficient insulation. You’ll no doubt increase your energy consumption during our cold winters and hot summers; that in itself is a pain. But what if one room has decent insulation while another doesn’t? That puts you right where you don’t want to be: with inconsistent room temperature.

Solution: Have an energy assessment completed on your home to determine where additional insulation is needed.

Big Homes Create Room Temperature Problems

A bigger home needs extra help to keep the temperature consistent throughout. That’s usually because one HVAC unit cannot manage the whole place. This is true for ranch homes with a large one story as well as for two-story residences.

The farther from the unit, the more inconsistent results will be. That’s because it takes longer for air to get through the ducts. And if you’re in a two-story home, upstairs will invariably be warmer than downstairs since heat rises.

Remember that the thermometer only measures room temperature near it. In a large home, room temperature will vary greatly, and just because the thermometer says one thing in the hallway, that’s no guarantee it will feel that warm or cool in another room.

Solution: You can solve most of these issues by doubling up on things. Two thermometers and two HVAC units will reduce the amount of space air has to travel. This is especially effective with a two-story home.

Suffering from Inconsistent Room Temperature Problems?

If you’re in the predicament of carrying a jacket with you and having to dress in layers inside your own home, you clearly have an issue. Contact the HVAC professionals at Forrest Anderson so we can help you determine what’s at the root of the problem and how we can help you be comfortable, no matter what season it is or in what room of your home you are.