It’s amazing that a gas originally burnt off as a byproduct of oil refining is now used by millions of people around the world. Propane or LPG (Liquid Petroleum Gas) has over 1,000 applications in industry, commerce, power generation, heating, cooking and leisure. With so many potential uses, it’s easy to miss LPG opportunities that would help your business. So here’s our quick guide to using propane gas:
Why is propane so useful?
Propane has many qualities but probably the three most valuable are its versatility, efficiency and low carbon qualities.
- Its versatility is, in part, due to its portability. Propane can be supplied in a wide range of cylinder sizes as well as in bulk, making it ideal as a vehicle fuel (e.g. fork lift trucks) and for use in remote, off-grid areas.
- Because so much of its energy is converted into heat, LPG can be more efficient than traditional fuels*
- Propane is a comparatively low carbon fossil fuel, with clean burning properties and lower greenhouse gas emissions than any other fossil fuel when measured on a total fuel cycle.*
Where can propane be used?
Propane or LPG (Liquid Petroleum Gas) can be used for everything from shrink wrapping to fog dispersion, the manufacture of polystyrene to graffiti cleaning. Here are some of its more common applications:
- Concrete curing
- Crop drying
- Cutting metal
- Electricity generation
- Fork lift truck powering
- Pest control
What makes it different?
- Propane gas burns clean and hot, producing less carbon dioxide and fewer air pollutants than other fuels such as oil and diesel
- It’s cost effective because a high percentage of its energy content is converted into heat
- It operates effectively in low temperatures
- It has a strong and reliable supply chain
It takes only modest pressure or cooling to turn propane from a gas – it’s normal atmospheric state – into a liquid. This makes LPG easy to store in liquid form within bulk tanks or portable cylinders. The tank pressure is only about twice that found in a normal lorry tyre which makes it safe when properly handled.
However, like any fuel gas, care must be taken when storing and using propane. Here are some safeguards to consider:
- Always use propane cylinders in the upright position unless specifically designed for liquid offtake
- Never heat a cylinder externally as it could cause the internal pressure to rise dangerously
- Be aware that propane is heavier than air, so escaped gas will sink to the lowest level it can find, including basements, under buildings, in pits and drains. Never assume any escaped gas has cleared until you have thoroughly checked such areas.
- Ensure the room where your propane appliance is used is always well ventilated. Highly poisonous Carbon Monoxide (CO) gas can be produced if an LPG fuelled device is not working correctly.
- There is more detailed information available in this BOC safety datasheet.
- Alternatively, there is a workshop that you can take to brush up your safety knowledge on using Propane safely simply register here
Are you missing out on the benefits of propane?
BOC can advise on which industrial gas best suits your purpose, including propane.
Visit BOConlineshop.co.uk to discover more about our Propane range or place an order.