• Propane Safety FAQ
  • Cylinders safety
  • Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)
  • An economical and environmentally friendly fuel, propane is used to heat your home and business, cook your meals, dry your clothes and heat your water, pools and spas. In properly maintained and operated systems, propane is safe, but like any other fuel gas it must be handled with care.

    As with any energy source, there are steps you should take to further ensure your safety when using propane. Propane is a colourless and odourless gas that is not itself toxic. Because propane has an odour additive (ethyl mercaptan - a scent similar to rotten eggs or boiling cabbage) you can easily detect it. Propane is heavier than air, so when checking for leaks, be aware that it gathers in low-lying areas.

    Q: If I smell propane, what should I do?
    A: Treat all propane gas odours seriously. Any odours may indicate a dangerous situation. If you think you smell propane in or around your home, immediately follow these procedures:

    • Get everyone out of the building immediately.
    • Do not turn light switches or flashlights on or off, or operate phones.
    • Turn off the supply of propane at the cylinder or meter.
    • Call the fire department or dial 911.
    • Do not re-enter the area until it is safe.
    • Call Superior Propane at 1-87SUPERIOR (1-877-873-7467) to schedule a service call to repair the leak once the area has been deemed safe; they will turn on the propane, check all the propane appliances and re-light the pilots on the appliances for you.

    If you have concerns about your ability to smell propane, you may want to consider purchasing a propane gas alarm. Please remember, while an alarm may provide an extra measure of warning, it should never be relied upon as a substitute for regular inspection and maintenance of propane appliances.

    Q: Can I shut off my propane supply in an emergency?
    A: Yes. If it’s necessary to turn off your propane supply before Superior Propane or the fire department arrives, you should know the proper procedure.

    TurnOffGas1If you have a meter, give the valve at the meter a quarter turn in either direction so that the lever is crosswise to the pipe to turn it off.

    To shut off the propane supply at the tank or cylinder, turn the hand wheel clockwise (to the right) as far as possible to make sure the valve is completely closed.

    If you are not sure how to shut off the gas supply from your meter, tank or cylinder, contact Superior Propane for instructions. A service technician or driver can show you how to turn the propane supply off at your next scheduled delivery or service inspection.

    Q: Can I turn the meter on again?
    A: No. Please leave this to an expert. Once the propane is shut off, a qualified Superior Propane service technician who can check out the appliances and venting should turn it back on for you.

    Q: Can I turn the tank or cylinder on again?
    A: No. Please do not turn the tank or cylinder back on. Call Superior Propane and leave it to our qualified technicians to check out your propane system to ensure it’s safe.

    Q: What safety tips do I need to know if I’m served by a propane meter or tank?


    • Know the location of your propane meter and/or tank.
    • Keep your tank and meter clear for emergency responses.
    • Know how to shut off your propane supply.
    • Keep a wrench in a convenient location, if you have a meter.
    • Do not enclose your meter or tank.
    • Do not tie pets or other objects to the meter or any outside propane pipes.

    Q: Do I ever need to repaint my tank?
    A: Yes. Rusty, unpainted or dark-coloured tanks do not reflect sunlight and may absorb heat causing an increase in pressure, leading to a possible discharge from the pressure release valve.

    Q: Is there anything I should do before doing major landscaping projects?
    A: Yes – call before you dig. If underground pipes bring propane to your house, be sure to call Superior Propane when making an addition to your home, doing major landscaping or installing fence posts.

    Canada has strictly enforced safety regulations related to the safe use of propane. That’s one reason why incidents involving propane tanks are rare.

    • All propane cylinders must have a decal identifying the contents as a flammable gas.
    • Only a qualified technician may fill your cylinder. It is illegal for an attendant to fill an outdated cylinder, or to fill a cylinder beyond 80% capacity.
    • All cylinders must be inspected and re-qualified or replaced every 10 years. A date stamp on the collar of the cylinder indicates when it was last qualified.
    • Just because a propane cylinder hasn't reached its 10-year limitation, doesn't mean it shouldn't be replaced. Check your tank closely. If it is rusty, damaged or you just aren't sure if it's reliable, don't take unnecessary risks. Replace it with a new one and be certain of your safety.
    • When you do get a new propane cylinder, make sure you turn the old one in so that it can be properly purged and recycled or disposed of.

    As with any fuel, safety must come first whenever you transport, handle and store propane. Taking the extra few minutes to ensure you handle your cylinder properly and transport it safely minimizes risk and avoids potential incidents or harm. Please follow these guidelines:

    When Transporting Cylinders

    • Always thread the special plug into the outlet of the service valve as soon as you disconnect the hose.
    • Always carry the cylinder in an upright position with the safety valve on top.
    • Never put a propane cylinder in a closed vehicle. If it is in the trunk, block the trunk lid open. It is preferable to transport it on the floor of the passenger compartment.
    • Secure the cylinder in the upright position so it can't tip over while you're driving.
    • When it is inside the passenger compartment have all the windows open.
    • Never leave a cylinder in a parked vehicle with the windows up. Heat builds up quickly and could cause an explosion.
    • When reconnecting the cylinder make sure it is secured in place on the barbecue.
    • After the hose is reconnected, check for leaks using the water and soap solution. If there are bubbles tighten the connection.
    • Never smoke while handling a propane cylinder.

    When Cylinder is in Use

    • Keep cylinders upright on a firm footing
    • Place cylinder outside
    • Keep cylinder away from flame or heat and building exits
    • Cylinder valve must be fully opened
    • Use only with appliances approved for propane
    • After connection, check for leaks with soap suds (never use a flame)
    • Never smoke while handling a propane cylinder

    When Cylinder is Not in Use

    • Keep cylinder upright on a firm footing
    • Store cylinder outside and off the ground on a base that will not burn
    • Close cylinder valve tightly, even when empty
    • Ensure cylinder valve is protected
    • Store away from flame or heat
    • When storing disconnected cylinders, plug or cap all cylinder outlets

    To find a Superior Propane cylinder exchange location, click the Product & Service Finder link below. For more information on the safe use of propane, call the knowledgeable and neighbourly team at Superior Propane toll-free at 1-87SUPERIOR (1-877-873-7467).

    If you would like information related to Superior Propane's safety practices and programs, email us at guardian@superiorpropane.com.

    Propane MSDS (226 KB)



    A Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) is a document that contains information on the potential health effects of exposure and how to work safely with the chemical product. It contains hazard evaluations on the use, storage, handling and emergency procedures all related to that material. The MSDS tells what the hazards of the product are, how to use the product safely, what to expect if the recommendations are not followed, what to do if accidents occur, how to recognize symptoms of overexposure, and what to do if such incidents occur.

    Review the MSDS for propane, propane (unstenched) and butane in the right column.

    If you would like information related to Superior Propane's safety practices and programs, email us at guardian@superiorpropane.com.

     Superior Propane is Canada's only national provider of portable fuels, equipment, and service delivered locally to customers in more communities than any other propane company.

    Superior Propane is dedicated to enhancing residential, commercial and industrial customer value with unique energy solutions that include leading technical and safety expertise, and professional equipment sales, installation and maintenance. We are committed to surpassing your expectations by delivering best in class customer service and turnkey solutions for all your energy and service needs. Superior Propane employs over 1400 employees and delivers over 1.2 billion litres of propane annually.

    Some of the many benefits our customers enjoy include:

    • Propane: an efficient and environment-friendly energy choice
    • Automatic Propane Delivery Program
    • Access to the largest local service and propane delivery network
    • Brand name equipment sales, installation and service
    • Comprehensive maintenance programs for home and business
    • Convenient payment and fixed pricing options
    • Reliable propane supply through Superior Gas Liquids
    • 24/7 customer care and emergency service
    • Leading Health, Safety & Environment Program
    • A stable company serving Canadians for 60 years


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