Since its discovery in the 1850s, propane has become a widely used fuel for home and business use. Part of propane’s value comes from moving from its natural gaseous state to a liquid form when pressurized. The shift in state means propane can be shipped and handled in pressurized containers as a liquid, making it easy to transport for some applications. For example, it is used to fuel camping stoves and grills, partly because it naturally returns to gaseous form when released from pressure. On the other hand, the state change makes propane challenging to transport via pipeline because the entire pipeline would need consistent pressurization.
Propane businesses deliver it to residences for cooking, home heating, and heating water, especially in rural areas with limited or no access to natural gas pipes.
Businesses use odorless and tasteless gas. Another customer group for propane businesses is businesses that use gas-powered forklifts. Propane tanks are often found immediately behind the forklift driver and above the engine. Many buses run on liquified propane as well. Other business applications for propane include use in construction to provide temporary heating when hanging drywall in otherwise cold conditions and by bricklayers who use it to warm the sand or bedding in winter.