Amerigas Rant....

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by canesisters, Dec 12, 2011.

  1. canesisters

    canesisters Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is NUTS!
    About 7 years ago we built a house and put in a propane furnace and stove (weren't we smart.. elect was expensive and propane was cheap....THEN).
    Then propane started going up along with everything else and the two income home became a one income home. I totally understand that utilities are in business to make a profit and that they are not in the business of giving away anything - but everyting about this just smells 'fishy'.
    I was on the plan that had them topping off my tank whenever they were in the area. Got a bill for about $500 a couple of times randomly over the year. Worked out ok cause it took me about 6mos to pay one off (with it's late fees) by the time the other showed up. Anyway - last year - around Thanksgiving - I came home to find a bill for around $1000 <GASP>. The price had just about doubled over the summer/fall. I called them and asked to set up payment arraingments since - with the winter coming on - I'd not be able to pay it off completely before it ran out. I was told that I had 30 days to pay it entirely or they'd turn it over to a collection agency.
    I was a bit dumbfounded since I had BEEN making payments to them for years... without an official 'plan' ... but I thought that it would be best, since this was so much money, to work something out right off and (maybe) avoid a ton of late fees.
    I rationed the propane use and managed to make it till March before running out. Sitll owed about $400 (including the $30/mo late fees). It was running in the 30's most nights so I called them and asked if there was any way to have a small load delivered since I could tell that it was almost out because I could smell it.
    They refused to send any more - but INSISTED that they HAD to have someone come out and check my lines / disconnect my empty tank. It was a "safety issue". Oh, and by the way, that would only cost me $250 - which would cover the re-connecting my house once I paid off the old bill and had another load delivered. [​IMG]
    Well, I finally got the giant bill paid off, and the disconnect/re-connect (for my own safety), and got a quarter-load of gas delivered. Turns there is a minimum delivery that just happens to work out to about $800...
    Well... by using the propane ONLY for heat and cooking on electric frying pans, griddles, crock pots, toaster ovens, etc, I've rationed that last load till now. (yeah) I'm down to the dregs and will be paying off the last bit today.
    I found out from a friend that another local gas company is almost $1 cheaper per gallon. So when I called to get the final amount owed to AG, I asked them to verify that the tank that is burried in my front yard is mine - since I had not been charged any tank rental fees all these years.
    Nope! I haven't been charged any rental because I keep buying propane. If I choose to not buy propane from them I have 2 choices - pay a $250 rental fee - or dig the tank up and give it back to them. ( ! ) ME DIG IT UP!!!!! These are the folks that were SO concerned for my safety that they HAD to send someone out that very day when I mentioned that I could smell the dregs from my empty tank........ They want me to dig up a metal tank with explosive vapors in it - that's attached to my house by a metal line - move that tank to the side of the road and leave it for them to pick up!
    So... is it just me or does it sound like I got sucked into a BAD deal..... I can't have anyone else fill the tank. I can't afford to have them fill the tank. I can't not fill the tank. Am I missing an option???? Maybe the cold is seeping into my brain...

    Just ranting... will most likely keep paying them for overpriced propane and keep hating every momnet of it. [​IMG]
     
  2. ChooksinChoppers

    ChooksinChoppers Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 24, 2011
    Ocala, Florida.
    Dang! I wish I could answer/help you...wow! remind me not to sign up for propane
    then again...how would they know if you started using the other company? just pay off their balance reeeaaaly slow LOL
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2011
  3. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

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    YEah, i wouldnt even tell them that you're using another company...
    And this other company doenst need to know that you supposedly dont "own" the tank either...
    Play dumb... assume that you own the tank...
     
  4. greeneggsandham

    greeneggsandham Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Putnam,CT
    I hear your pain. I currently have Amerigas and once this season is over so are they. Nothing but headaches.
    Who put it in the ground to begin with? I have honestly never heard of that being done anymore. A home owner can not as far as I know dig up a gas tank that is attached to the house. Maybe call your home owners insurance and see what they have to say about you being told to dig up a gas tank. I bet they will tell you not to. Just crazy.

    I would personally just use the other company let them know that the tank is yours and if they could just fill it.
     
  5. Royd

    Royd Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What other options do you have? Wood, coal? I really hate it when utilities have you by the short hairs.
     
  6. Skyesrocket

    Skyesrocket Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 20, 2008
    Out of curiosity I would call the other company and ask them what their fees are. The excess fees that Amerigas has been charging you. If they are very different from Amerigas then I would start making some phone calls. I hope that you have saved your receipts or bills from them.
    I would change to the less expensive company. I doubt that the new company will bother asking if the tank is yours or not. I would pay the balance off to them real slow. Like ten bucks a month.
    Good Luck!
     
  7. Avonlea22

    Avonlea22 Jessamine Cottage

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    Aug 27, 2011
    That is a bunch of crud. I have propane, too, and the price is out of control right now. I use it for hot water and ac/heat. I plan to switch my hot water heater to electric next year, but I'm stuck with propane for heat. Luckily my stove is electric, too. I never gave any thought as to who owns the tank under my lawn. I assumed I bought it with the house. I was going to check with other distributors in the area to try and find a better price, but this has me worried now.

    Can you find any documents stating that they own the tank?

    I'm sorry I can't give you any advice. Best of luck with whatever happens.
     
  8. serendipity22

    serendipity22 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How funny... I turned Amerigas into the BBB a couple of months ago. Why? Because they charged me a 'tank rental' fee on the tank we own. So, we immediately called them and explained the error. Keep in mind that we have not done business with this company for over two years because of the constant top offs we were getting at $500 a pop... It just seemed fishy.

    They said, "Oh, no problem at all! We've changed over some software and ALOT of people were erroneously billed."

    "OK, no problem. Just fix it." However, the next month I get another bill. This one with that $30+ late fee on it. So they were called again, and I wrote the name down of the person I spoke with and specifically asked if this was taken care of and if I would see another bill the next month...

    They said, "Oh, no problem. Its all taken care of!" ((Do you see a pattern here?))

    The NEXT month, I get ANOTHER bill. With ANOTHER late fee. Well... They were called again, only this time I was told that the person that could fix my account wasn't there. So I called their head office. And I was told that they couldn't fix my account either. "Fine," I said. "You'll be turned into the BBB." Then I called my local folks again and asked for the supervisor (who wasn't there, of course) and informed them that they were being turned in to the BBB.

    I typed up my report and felt so much better. I've never turned a company in before.

    The BBB emailed me about a month later stating that the company wouldn't respond to their emails... But my bill is fixed finally.
     
  9. canesisters

    canesisters Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2011
    Virginia
    I've talked to my friend's gas company and they tell me that they are pickign up amerigas' customers left and right. Not so much because of their high prices, but because of terrible customer service. I told her about the in ground tank - and how they want me to dig it up and give it back, she said that they've been able to work out a 'deal' for several former AG customers where they would give AG one of their underground tanks and take over ownership of the one that was burried. She's going to see if they will agree to that.

    Serendipity - isn't it funny how it is impossible to get in touch with anyone at the local offices? I had to call them 5 times yesterday and not ONCE did I get through on the first try - and when I finally got thrugh, I had to be transfered several times to find someone who could help me. Everytime I called I'd get a busy signal. I'd hit redial several times and finally get through. Odd part - when I got to the office last night, there were 6 people at a little block of desks answering phones. AND, by the way, being rude to the people they were talking to. Saying things like "Well mam, your finances aren't really my problem are they, so I don't know what you think I can do"n <yikes - that made my eyes pop a little - how harsh... wonder what the poor lady on the phone was trying to explain to her>

    The reason I was calling them all day ..... I went to "my' local office (about 45mins north) Fri after work to pay off my account - and there was a hand written note on the door stating that this office was closed and that I needed to drive about 30mins east to their new location. So on Monday morning - when I leave my house and drive about 20mins south to work, (which now makes be about nearly 2hrs away from 'my' office) I check and find out that there are 2 offices within 15/20 mins of my office. I call one to get directions (busy signal, busy signal, busy signal, finally get thrugh) and they tell me that they can't accept my payment, that I MUST go to 'my' local office. I call 'my' number to get directions from work to the new office (busy signal, busy signal, busy signal, finally get thrugh) - they tell me that I don't need to drive that far and that I should go to the other office that's near me. I call that office (yeah, several tries before connecting) and they tell me that they can't take my money..... so I call 'my' office back and am told that they lock the door at 4:00 so don't be late... [​IMG] [​IMG] So after work, I rush north - following their directions - and can't find them. I call them - yup... several tries before getting through... and tell them that I'm on the road they're supposed to be on and can't find them. I'm told - in a snarky tone - that they're NOT on that road and that I 'forgot' to turn onto on more side road - and that they close in 5 mins so I'd better hurry. [​IMG]

    I would just get another company to fill the tank - but if I don't order a minimum abount annually from AG, they'll charge me $250 tank rental. That's almost the difference that I would be saving having someone else fill the tank. I'm really hoping that they'll be able to work out a switch and I can get away from AG for good.


    As I read back over this - I believe that I've done just about enough whining over them [​IMG] . Thanks for the support and sympathy. I guess several years of frustratioin just boiled up. <deep breath> better now.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2011
  10. chickened

    chickened Overrun With Chickens

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    I would tell them to come get their tank and find an above ground tank from another company. You could buy a tank and then get gas cheaper. The places that rent a tank will not fill others' tanks usually. The places that rent tanks make their money selling gas at a higher price and force you to buy their gas.

    I would not pay to have their tank removed I would tell them it is your tank not mine if you want it come get it, they will.

    A wood stove or pellet stove is cheaper than gas.
     

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