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Author Topic: Electric vs propane heating  (Read 124779 times)

Will Gaudreau

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Propane...OUCH
« Reply #19 on: March 03, 2011, 07:50:23 PM »
Now that Qaddafi has shown oil refiners they can charge pretty much anything they desire, we will get hammered next year on the cost of our propane. I never thought we'd be considering an electric furnace, but nuclear, wind, solar and coal will, from now on, be cheaper than propane, which is pegged to the price of gasoline. If we weren't selling our house, I'd fire up the chainsaw and install one of those wood fired backyard units.

JK

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #18 on: February 24, 2011, 06:46:40 PM »
Wow, so glad to have found this thread. My husband and I just moved to a cute little 2 bedroom cabin that's heated with propane. We've never been in an area that used propane before. It cost us over $500 to fill the tank, and that was just about a month and a half ago. It's already down to 30%!!! To say I was shocked and disturbed is an understatement. We have been trying to avoid using the heater, but it has been so cold lately, and we still have a few months to go... I had no idea propane was so expensive! We were charged $3.75/gal!!! I would never think electric heaters would be a cheaper option, but I will have to look into them. There's no way we can afford to rely solely on propane... ridiculous! We love renting this little house, but it is pretty drafty, and definitely not energy efficient! It is only about 1000 sq feet. I can't believe we are looking at $250/month without even counting electricity costs! Ugh.

death by propane

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #17 on: February 14, 2011, 11:29:44 AM »
We bought a propane-heated home in October, and it is wiping out our savings account. First bill in late November was $400. 2nd bill was first week of January for $1,086. JUST received another bill this weekend (for one month of propane usage) and it was $876!!!! I'm pretty sure I had a mini-stroke upon opening that bill. I don't know how propane companies are staying in business at these prices, but we are switching to an electric unit before next winter even if I have to take out a loan to do it. It's RIDICULOUSLY EXPENSIVE!! (and by the way, we are only heating the lower level of our home and it is only about 1500 sq ft - we are keeping the upper level closed off - also keeping the thermostat set no higher than 66 degrees so we aren't even feeling warm) :(

Greg Ralyea

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #16 on: February 13, 2011, 11:23:52 AM »
To just passing by- Agree- Geothermal is highly efficient, and cost effective (cheap) to operate. But, what is the cost to have the wells, either vertical or trenches for horizontal storage, drilled or excavated. In our area, it would be $50,000 plus to have a geothermal system engineered and installed, according to our local heating contractors and PA public utility people. I don't want to be perceived as disrespectful, but the payback on that is too long for me.

hating_propane

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #15 on: January 27, 2011, 05:32:33 PM »
I have a brand new townhome, approximately 1700 sq ft. I live in the DC Metro area, and have propane bills that range from 400-600 a MONTH during the winter. This is keeping the thermostat at 67 in the day and 62 at night. Always FREEZING in my home. Had I not got on the "budget plan" this year and locked in my propane price at 2.59/gallon, my bill for January this year would have been over $700!!! For a townhome! Do NOT use propane to heat your home if you can help it. I am looking at selling my home because of this.

Paul

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #14 on: January 23, 2011, 04:07:59 PM »
When I bought my house in New Jersey in 1996, the price of heating oil was less than $1 per gallon. Now it is $3.30 per gallon. To save money, this is what I do: For downstairs, which is about 1600 sq. ft., I use oil furnace to heat. For upstairs, which has three bedrooms and a bathroom and is a little less than 1600 sq. ft., I use portable electric heaters in each room. Yes, portable heaters. I have hooked up each heater to Lux Win100 programmable thermostat which costs about $35 on Amazon. To be safe, each heater has its own dedicated 20 Amp circuit instead the 15 Amp that most manufacturers recommend. Also, never use an extension cord. Each heater is programmed to go on at about 10:00 p.m. and off at 8:00 a.m. The oil furnace is also programmed to go on at 8:00 a.m. and off at 10:00 p.m. Recently, we've had a severe cold spell (temps at night in the single digits to negative single digits) and I used Kill-a-Watt meter, which I bought from Home Depot for $28, to measure the use of electricity in my 400 Sq. ft. master bedroom. The total amount used for about ten hours was approximately 4Kwh. Electricity at about 17 cents per Kwh at this time of the year, it cost me about 70 cents to keep the bedroom at constant 72 degrees the entire night. I use DeLonghi Mica Panel heater in the master bedroom which I bought for about $80 a couple of years ago. If I were to run the oil furnace, I am absolutely positive that it would have cost me a lot more than 70 cents. If you want to buy portable heaters, check in Consumer Reports to see which are economical and safe heaters. So, in the end, I would say that if electricity is used as zonal heat with programmable thermostats, it will definitely save you money.

Anonymous

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2011, 03:16:57 PM »
Well gosh them dang energy bills here sure don't look frugal to me, I think I'll stick to my $140 a month in the worst of weather and start appreciating what I got seeing how I guess I just didn't know how good I had it, thanks for reminding me!

Jeff

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2011, 02:46:02 PM »
OK this is what you need to do, step one is to figurer out what your degree days are for you area. This is a fact put out by the weather service so you can estimate how many degree days you have to heat for. second is to determine how much energy/ insulation your home has as this will change all the numbers quoted by those experts. i can make the above very greatly. (example my house and my neighborers hose were identical constructed and heated with heat pumps. I super insulated my house and his last month heating bill was 320 dollar . My heating bill was 88 dollars. ) this insulation values critical in energy usage. next BTU is BTU . the only difference is the cost per BTU. Find the one that is the cheapest or bets fits your lifestyle. you can find all this information on a web site called 'build it solar dot com." he sells nothing and has every calculator you may need to make a decision..

Sean W

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2011, 05:28:26 PM »
I live in a 1400 sq ft home in Northwest Pa with a propane furnace, it cost $800-$850 to fill my tank, wich only lasts about 6 weeks in the winter, I am strongly considering switching to an electric furnace.

Steve

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #10 on: January 01, 2011, 09:11:23 PM »
for those that need proof of frugal life's accurate claim (or if you'd like to compare costs of other heating sources) see the US Dept of Energy's comparison calculator at http://www.eia.doe.gov/neic/experts/heatcalc.xls

Betty W.

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2010, 05:25:24 PM »
You are right that propane heat is expensive. I spent over $2000. 00 this past winter (in 6 months) to heat a 1600 sq. foot house in North Carolina. We had an electric heat pump in our previous home and our bills averaged about $160/month.

Lori

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #8 on: December 13, 2010, 09:44:30 AM »
We live in the Northwest. When we first built our house 15 years ago we had propane forced air system put in. That year we had a really bad storm and we went through a 250 gallon tank in 3 weeks. This cost us around 400.00 or so now it is up to 600.00 to fill the tank. I have been avoiding using the propane heater. We also had put in a heat pump and pellet stove. I am considering putting in an electric furnace, and have been slowly doing away with propane because of the cost.

On the Fence

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2010, 09:28:52 AM »
Kinda on the fence about both.. Propane in north Carolina is so expensive but we have never had electric.. I wanted to find out the cost to get an electric pump installed and i happen to see this site.. we are on a budget plan and our regular payment is 150 for 11 months with top offs every month... i was new to propane so i think they took advantage of that and now i am stuck and dont know what to do.. any suggestions?

Harry P

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2010, 09:42:51 AM »
I agree that Propane is a better fuel, but the fact is that the rates charged by electric utilities is regulated whereas propane suppliers are not. They are able to charge you any rate because they know you cant hop suppliers easily. I stick to electric , much less effort than dealing with greedy propane suppliers

Jerry W

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Re: Electric vs propane heating
« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2010, 09:26:51 AM »
Hello....I was in upper management in the propane industry for over 30 years, for both large domestic propane companies and for natural gas utilities, and have just a few comments. Propane heat, like natural gas heat, is far warmer coming out of the duct than electric can ever be. A heat pump in any climates north of, say, North Carolina, will only provide a home heat that is always chilly, and also quite expensive - on the range of $400-600 per month in a peak winter month. Propane will provide much more pleasant heat, but it is not cheap. With propane approaching $2.50-2.75 per gallon, and the average house in the north using 200-300 gallons in a peak month, the charges can actually exceed electric. Natural gas is by far the most comfortable and the least expensive, but is not available in all areas unless there is an existing distribution system in the area fed by a not-too-distant high pressure transmission line. The best suggestion, whether propane or natural gas, is to us a hybrid system......use the gas in the months when the temperature drops below 42-45 degrees, and use the heat pump for all other days, including for the cooling, for which it is really designed and unmatched. Finally, if one has the funds, getting the most up-to-date and efficient gas furnace and heat pump will be expensive, but will certainly pay for itself in 6-10 year of savings in fuel costs.....of both fuels. And, with the current federal tax credits and the various manufacturers rebates, this could be the best time to make the move.

 

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