All this talk lately about propane tanks in the house has made me
very nervous, although I've never had a problem. But tell the
insurance company? I can't bring myself to open that can of worms.
Dear Alan Mason,
Your worries about contacting your insurance company are not helpful
If you contact them BEFORE there is a fire or other loss then you
will be dealing with the “good cop” insurance agent. The agent will
want to help you. He/she will want to find a way to keep you as a
customer, to find a way to make your set-up work safely, in other
words, to keep you in business so that the company keeps receiving
your premiums and avoids risk of having to pay out for fire damage.
If you have to deal with the insurer AFTER there has been a fire
then you will be dealing with the “bad cop” insurance adjustor whose
job it is to find any possible reason to avoid paying for the
damage. An adjustor will ask lots of questions, look in many
The fact that you mention that all this talk about propane safety
makes you “very nervous” almost guarantees that your nervousness will
only be worse and probably quite obvious at that point in time. A
violation of the company or government rules about your propane
installation may be enough to void the policy even if the propane did
not start the fire. So get ahead of the problem. The insurers want
to avoid payouts so they will do their best to help you get it right
- out of simple profit-seeking good sense.
Another way to look at this - Why are you wasting your money paying
for insurance that will not pay off when you need it ? Cancel the
policy and use the money for a good party.
I don’t think much of leak detectors, as I have mentioned in a
previous post. Of course they might help but I can think of a bunch
of reasons why they might not help also. For example, if there is
nobody home when the detector notices a leak, who will notice its
alarm signal? Or if some well-meaning person arrives in response and
turns on a light switch to see what’s up. Or if the propane has been
driven to the opposite end of the room from where the detector is
Marty in Victoria.