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Some Thoughts into 2016

Over the past few weeks, I have talked to several contractors who sell oil, LP gas, pellets and heating equipment. During these conversations, they all seem to all have a standard question for me–when are we going to get the cold weather?  As I have stated many times, my crystal ball broke a long time ago. However, I do however ...

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Ignition Systems – One More Time?

by George Lanthier* This is a second update on the fifth article I ever wrote back in January of 1992 and updated again in 2000. We missed a 10-year update in 2010, so here goes. One of the things that all of us have heard is that they don’t build ignition transformers like they used too. In the past it ...

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Support Your Local Association

  As the end of another calendar year bears down on us, many of our industry trade associations are working on their budgets for 2016, developing new programs for the offing in the coming year, prepping to do battle in their state houses, reminding members (and non-members) of the good work the association has done in 2015 and, in many ...

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Converting to Gas

Like many of you, I have heard (almost on a daily basis) about customers calling their oil dealer or a mechanical company about converting from oil to gas heat. This of course was due to the extremely high cost of fuel oil or the gas equipment rebates being offer in some states. I’m trying to make sense of this, especially ...

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Propane Emergency Responder Training

  In September propane industry folks from the Northeast region joined members of the fire services community at annual propane emergencies training, a.k.a. Emergency Response Training. In New York State, over 50 propane industry and firefighters spent three days in close quarter classroom and field training at the New York State Fire Academy in Montour Falls, N.Y.  The event was ...

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80 YEARS

During the many years that this magazine has been in existence, I have been one of its many subscribers and readers. Today the circulation is 15,000 strong and growing. As I begin the journey of looking back over the years, I would be remise, if I did not mention the many writers, advertisers and technicians that have passed on, leaving ...

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Do We Really Understand Efficiency?

I know that every one of you have been questioned about efficiency by your customers, and you do your best to give your description or cite examples on the topic. In many sales presentations your customers will often mention that they want a unit that has the best AFUE rating. They may even mention how they have spent time on ...

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Drones

I was attacked by armed drones, survived, and am here to tell you about it. Webster defines drones in part as “an unmanned aircraft or ship guided by remote control or onboard computers.” We are under assault by drones now.  A recent “near death” experience drove home the notion that we, as an industry, need to deploy our own drones. ...

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The Ductless Mini Split Rage

Since about 2005 I have been following the ductless mini split system market, although I’ve heard that they have been around since the mid-60s. I must say over the past several years, Mini’s have become the rage—I continually hear how popular these systems have become. As far as what brand is the best, in the interest of not offending any ...

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Contagion

In the past decade, natural gas utilities have added 300,000 miles of distribution mains to serve 17 million more customers.” —American Gas Association The above was the opening slide from a presentation I attended at Propane Days in Washington in June. Jeff Petrash, VP and general counsel of the National Propane Gas Association spoke on the expansion efforts of the ...

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