About Our Company
Philadelphia Gas & Electric Heating & Air Conditioning (PGE) has been around the block a time or ten.
We opened in 1955, when gas furnaces were just becoming widespread… and before residential central air was even popular!
With over six decades in business, we’re one of the most established HVAC contractors serving Philadelphia and its suburbs. And to this day, we’re owned by the same family that started the company. Because of our reputation for honesty and quality, we’ve had loyal customers who have been with us for over 30 years.
Bottom line: In an industry that places profits over people, we’re the community-oriented HVAC company that homeowners trust like family.
How We Started
After serving in the U.S. Army, James Toran received a GI bill. He used this to go to college and get an engineering degree.
Once he graduated, Jim got a job in the oil delivery business. This gave him insight and knowledge into how oil heating systems operated.
After a few years working in delivery, Jim decided he wanted to start his own heater installation company. With his engineering education and knowledge of oil and gas heating systems, it was the perfect career calling.
But Jim knew he couldn’t start his business alone. He needed help.
Family-Run Through And Through
At that time, Jim’s father was a roofer in his 60s, and his mother worked at a women’s hat shop in South Philadelphia.
Jim didn’t want his father climbing roofs anymore, and business at his mother’s hat shop had slowed. So Jim asked them if they’d help him start his company.
They were thrilled to oblige.
That’s how Philadelphia Gas & Electric began. Jim ran the company and performed the installations. Jim’s mother handled bookkeeping and managerial duties. And Jim’s father helped with the business’s logistics.
It was a true family effort.
Evolving With The Times
As time went on, HVAC technology evolved—and so did PGE. Shortly after Jim started the company, gas furnaces became popular.
They were a cleaner burn than oil furnaces, and they were much smaller. So Jim shifted PGE’s focus to gas furnace installation.
In the 1960s, central air was becoming popular. Jim knew this was a groundbreaking innovation for in-home comfort, and PGE became one of the first companies in the area to install central air in residential homes.
As Philadelphia expanded into more suburbs, so did PGE’s area of service. As years went by, word of mouth about PGE spread among homeowners. We became known as the family-owned company that provided honest solutions, top-quality work, and fair pricing.
In other words, the HVAC contractor people could trust.
Passing The Torch
In 1986, Jim’s son Mike (then 23) joined PGE. Mike was looking for a job after graduating with a business degree, so his brother (who already worked at PGE) suggested he join the family trade.
Mike started out doing all the “entry-level” apprentice work that needed doing. He quickly moved into doing service work and became an integral part of the company.
One day in 1996, Jim handed Mike his keyring with all the company keys. He looked at Mike and (half-jokingly) said, “Here are the keys to the business. I’m retiring to Florida.”
Jim founded the company with his father and mother in 1955. He grew it over the course of four decades. Now it was time to pass the torch to the next generation.
Mike has been the owner of PGE ever since Jim handed him that keyring.
Our Core Values
Integrity: Doing the job 100% right is NON-NEGOTIABLE. In the rare instance we make a mistake, we bend over backward to make things better than right.
Honesty: It’s about what’s best for you—even if that’s not what’s best for our bottom line. We regularly have homeowners say, “I’ve called multiple companies, and you’re the only ones who have said I don’t need to buy a new system!”
Reliability: At PGE, a promise made is a promise kept. You can count on us—PERIOD. Our reliability is why some of our customers have been with us for over 30 years!
Respect: Our mission is to create a pleasant experience for you from start to finish. We’re friendly, approachable, and show complete respect for your home at all times.
Innovation: We may adhere to “old-school” customer service values, but we remain on the cutting-edge of HVAC advancements. We always look for ways to utilize the latest and greatest technology, materials, and techniques.