Propane Consumer Rights

propane consumer rights harris

D.E. Harris Co. Inc. (hereinafter refereed to as “The Company” or “We”) is licensed by the State of New Jersey to perform propane delivery and service; our license number is LPG-044.

Terms of Service

  1. We require a signed “Consumer Agreement and Authorization for Credit Check” from all prospective customers.
  2. We reserve the right to require payment at the time of delivery)’ (“Cash On Delivery” or “COD”) for customers who do not meet credit requirements. COD customers may pay by the following means: Cash, Certified Check, Check, Credit Card, or Money Order.
  3. For non-COD deliveries and service work, We require payment in full within fifteen (15) days of delivery or work performed. Late payments are subject to finance charges of 1.5% monthly as outlined in the customer Consumer Agreement.
  4. The Company offers the following delivery methods:
    1. Automatic Delivery (we schedulyour delivery ). The majority of Harris Propane customers arc on our automatic delivery program. Deliveries are made according to 10 a schedule determined by weather (degree days), calendar calculations, remote tank monitors, and/or past appliance usage.
    2. Will Call (Customer Requested Delivery). The customer is responsible for monitoring the level of propane in their tank; deliveries are made solely when the customer contacts us. We must be notified five (5) business days prior to the desired delivery date. There is a minimum delivery amount determined by the size of the propane storage tank at the customer’s location. Deliveries below the minimum number of gallons may be subject to a surcharge. If a Will Call customer runs out of gas, the system must be leak checked prior to resuming service and may incur a service fee.

Pricing Structure

We base our price of propane on the following factors:

  • Estimated annual usage (lower rates apply for larger users)
  • Time of year (lower rates may apply for off-season deliveries)
  • Delivery day/time (higher rates apply to deliveries made outside normal business hours (typically Monday through Friday 8:00 am-4:30 pm), on holidays, or weekends.
  • Number of locations (lower rates may apply for customers with multiple accounts)
  • Customer Location (higher rates apply for locations that require additional travel time)
  • Type of delivery selected (Will Call vs. Automatic Delivery)

Pricing Policy

We charge for propane based on liquid gallons pumped through a certified, temperature compensated meter. The price of propane, like any commodity, changes over time. This will affect your bill as the price fluctuates. The Company’s pricing policies will determine how often your bill is adjusted to account for changes in the cost of propane. We offer the following pricing options:

  • Budget Payment Plan- Payments for the year are divided into a fixed monthly amount based on projected usage over a number of months. Your propane is priced at current Market Price at the time of delivery(s). The monthly payment amount may be adjusted during the plan based on actual consumption and/or market conditions.
  • Pre-Buy Pricing- You purchase your propane in advance and the price is locked in for a specified period of time.
  • Market Pricing- The price is based on an amount above the wholesale price for a specified wholesaler, terminal, or pipeline. As the wholesale reference price changes, so will your price.
  • Special Pricing- Pricing presented in a customer proposal and/or specified in the customer Consumer Agreement.

Equipment Fees

Customers have the right to either lease equipment from Harris Propane or use their own equipment.

Harris Propane may charge the following equipment related fees:

  • Fee for the installation of tanks associated with a new service or the replacement/relocation of tanks associated with an existing service.
  • Fee for the rental of storage tanks and regulators when using Harris Propane’s equipment. The cost of routine inspections and maintenance of the rented equipment is covered under this fee. Tank rental fees vary with the size of the tank and your annual consumption. This fee includes the regulator(s), tank blocks, and related plumbing fittings.
  • There may be a fee for some types of repairs to Harris Propane’s equipment. This would include repairs of damage directly caused by others (i.e. the customer, visitors to the property, landscapers, contractors, vandals, etc.)
  • Fee for the removal, disconnection, retrieval, or pump-out of company-owned tanks and equipment.
  • Fee for the re-connection of company-owned equipment after a suspension due to non-payment or customer agreement default.
  • Fee for inspecting and/or servicing tanks and regulators when customer-owned equipment is used. The fee may be applied prior to initial delivery, on an annual basis or when making changes to or repairs of customer owned equipment.
  • Fee for leak-checking the system:
    • Company-Owned Equipment: after an “out of gas” situation caused by non-payment or failure to order a timely delivery when on a Will Call delivery schedule.
    • Customer-Owned Equipment: first delivery to a new customer, changes to an existing installation, after an “out of gas” situation caused by non­ payment or failure to order a timely delivery when on a Will Call delivery schedule.
  • Fee for service shut-off due to unsafe conditions (e.g. having an improperly vented heater or appliance, piping not up to code, etc.)

Note: Feefor servicework are based on the specifics of the particular job to bperformedAs such, prices are estimated on a case-by-case basis.

Change of Supplier

Customers have the right to change suppliers if they are dissatisfied with the price or service offered. Discontinuance of service is subject to the terms of your Consumer Agreement. The following conditions apply to a discontinuance of service:

  • Harris Propane will remove our container within thirty (30) days of written notification by the customer who is discontinuing service. Harris Propane will attempt to notify you of the removal date and approximate time, at least one day prior to removal.
  • Harris Propane will charge for the removal of the container, processing the credit for any returned gas. HP-104a
  • Harris Propane will credit the: customer for any propane remaining in the container at the time of removal (you are permitted to be present when the remaining volume is removed)

Note: At one or two-familresidential properties, a new supplier may disconnect and move containers owned by others; however, the new supplier may not fill a container owned by another propane marketerAt other larger (commercial) properties, the new supplier may not remove, connect, disconnect, fill, or refill any propane container without written permission from the owner of that container.

Disconnection

You will be notified seven (7) days prior to the disconnection of service for non-payment.

Complaints

The Liquefied Petroleum Gas Board regulates the licensing of propane marketers as well as enforcing safety regulations on LP-Gas systems. The LP-Gas Board DOES NOT regulate pricing. If you are dissatisfied with the price your supplier is charging, you have the right to contact them to discuss it or to change suppliers in accordance with the terms of your current Consumer Agreement.

  1. Complaints or questions should first be brought to the attention of your current supplier.
  2. lf you are not satisfied with your supplier’s response and wish to pursue a complaint, contact the NJ Department of Community Affairs at (609) 633-6835 or by email at LPGas@dca.state.nj.us. Complaints by phone should be made Monday through Friday from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.

Key Questions Consumers Should Ask When Changing Suppliers

Because rates and policies differ among propane marketers, first time customers or customers considering moving to a new supplier should be informed enough to ask a few key questions s:

  • Does the marketer have current, valid license issued by the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs? The list of licensed marketers is available on the Department’s website at www.state.nj.us/dca or by calling (609) 633-6835.
  • Is there a written description of services that will be provided?
  • ls there a charge to install the container and/or related equipment necessary to establish service?
  • What is the most economical method of purchasing propane?
  • Do you have to call when you need propane or will the marketer schedule your deliveries?
  • How often will you receive a delivery? What days are deliveries made? Are deliveries made on weekends or holidays?
  • How much will it cost to receive a delivery outside of the normal schedule?
  • Is the price based on annual usage, the area you live in, the quantity per delivery, or other criteria?
  • How soon after a delivery is made do you have to pay your bill? D Is there a penalty for a late payment?
  • What is the marketer’s policy if you need fuel in the winter but you still have an outstanding bill?
  • Does the marketer offer any discounts that apply to you?
  • Does the marketer have an equal payment (budget) plan?
  • Does the marketer install and/or service LP-Gas appliances?
  • Does the marketer have a website address?

Be sure to address any other concerns you may have that are not listed above.

Energy Assistance

The following agency has programs available to assist low-income households with their energy bills. For more information, please contact LIHEAP (The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program) at 1(800) 510-3102.

Safety Recommendations

  • LP-Gas is a safe and efficient fuel source when handled properly. All Harris Propane installations and services are performed in conformance with national. state and local codes/regulations.
  • Ask your supplier what procedures they have in place to ensure the safety and integrity of the system which serves you.
  • Follow all manufacturers’ instructions for the proper use and care of your LP-Gas appliances.
  • NEVER attempt to repair or alter an LP-Gas appliance. Contact your supplier or a licensed service representative for assistance.
  • An odorant has been added to your LP-Gas so you can detect it if your system develops a leak. Learn what LP-Gas smells like. Your supplier has scratch-and-sniff pamphlets to help you and your family recognize its distinctive odor.·
  • Learn how to turn off your gas supply. Some gas valves require the use of a wrench to operate them. Ask your supplier for assistance if you do not know bow to tum off your gas supply.
  • Keep areas around LP-Gas appliances clean and clear of combustibles.
  • Keep underground container domes clear when it snows in case a delivery is needed.
  • Ask your supplier whether all installations and services provided are in conformance with New Jersey Department of Community Affairs regulations.
  • Notify your supplier prior to the installation of air conditioning or any modifications to your home that are within ten feet of the container.
  • Check www.propanesafety.com, www.npga.org, and your supplier’s website or call your supplier for additional safety information.·

If You Smell Gas

  1. Immediately put out any smoking materials and other open flames. Exit the building/area where you suspect gas is leaking without using the telephone/cell phone, operating any electrical switches or lighting any matches or smoking materials.
  2. If possible, tum off the gas at the container or meter valve.
  3. Call 911 from a neighbor’s home and then call your supplier.
  4. Do not re-enter the building until the emergency responder tells you it is safe to do so.

Your Supplies ls required to respond in case of an emergency.

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