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daffodil
04-15-2010, 10:37 PM
I was reading the thread on gas or electric stoves. Interesting since I wondered which to go with too. Don't you have to have that big tank though for the propane? Or does each appliance have it's own tank??? When I think of propane I always think of that huge tank people have in their yards. I wouldn't be able to have one of those here (that I know of). Also I've always been afraid they would explode. But I'd much rather go with propane than electric if I could pull it off here. I don't want natural gas really, too expensive. I didn't realize how cheap the propane was til reading the other thread. How does that work with having say a propane stove, refrigerator, water heater, etc. How do you hook in to it? Is it like a natural gas line type thing or more like just hooking up the propane grill?

cinok
04-15-2010, 11:22 PM
I was reading the thread on gas or electric stoves. Interesting since I wondered which to go with too. Don't you have to have that big tank though for the propane? Or does each appliance have it's own tank??? When I think of propane I always think of that huge tank people have in their yards. I wouldn't be able to have one of those here (that I know of). Also I've always been afraid they would explode. But I'd much rather go with propane than electric if I could pull it off here. I don't want natural gas really, too expensive. I didn't realize how cheap the propane was til reading the other thread. How does that work with having say a propane stove, refrigerator, water heater, etc. How do you hook in to it? Is it like a natural gas line type thing or more like just hooking up the propane grill?

We run our stove off of an 100lb tank and it lasts for months we cook at least 2x a day use the oven very often for roasts and baking. The bottle cost about $100 and 65 to fill. I use a regular that would be used for a heater with a line going to the stove. The stove we have has no standing pilots so that decreases use of propane.

DM
04-15-2010, 11:54 PM
I've never seen propane cheaper than natural gas... Natural gas has always been the cheapest anywhere i've ever checked prices, and it's what i would go with, if it was available.

DM

NCLee
04-16-2010, 10:41 AM
Agree! Check the prices, in your area to be sure.

With propane, the size of the storage container will also determine the price per gallon that you pay. Based on prices around here last fall, bulk propane was $1.79 per gallon, with a cost of well over $3.00 per gallon for smaller tanks.

Something else to consider. If you put in a 250-500 gal propane tank, you have to pay up front when you have the tank filled. When the propane is delivered, the full amount is due, usually within 30 days. As opposed to paying for natural gas, as you use it.

You don't have to convert everything to propane or natural gas. Just the things that are most economical for you. Both in terms of the cost of the appliance and the amount of energy used. For example, you may find a good used gas stove for around $100. (Flea market, Habitat for Humanity, newspaper ads) Then, either have that hooked up to natural gas or add a 100 lb propane tank. (You'll have to make sure the orifices in the stove -- brass fittings -- are the right ones for the fuel source. They are easy to change.) Last time I checked a 100 lb tank was around $90 at Lowes. The only thing else you'll need is a regulator and the line and fittings to hook up the stove. A 3/4" hole through the wall or floor to route the gas line. Your propane supplier or natural gas supplier can do the hook up for you. There'll be a service charge, of course.

BTW, you can run a gas stove off a 20 lb cylinder. However, you'll have to refill it fairly often, depending on how much to cook. And, the cost of propane for 20 lb cylinders is higher than any other option.

FWIW, our home started out totally electric. We're gradually switching it out to propane. Natural gas isn't available where I live. First switch was the kitchen stove about 10 years ago. Last fall when our HVAC system failed, we put in a gas pack for heat. When the water heater dies, we'll probably switch that to propane, too. As long as the water heater is working, can't see spending the extra dollars to convert. Doubt we'll ever switch to propane refrigeration in the kitchen. From what I understand those full size propane refrigerators are more expensive.

BTW, an alternative, if all you need is a small refrigerator is to install one salvaged from a travel trailer. These are usually dual fuel (120v & propane). Like a stove, these can run off a 20 lb cylinder. And, you might run across a good deal on a 4 burner travel trailer stove with an oven. These can be installed in a counter top. I put one in our travel trailer and have another one in storage. Found both at a salvage yard for just a few bucks.

Running propane lines, dealing with hookups, regulators, and such are easy, provided you have the experience. Can be very dangerous if you try to do it without having experience. Be sure to get someone who knows how to work with it, rather than trying DIY.

Hope this helps, some.
Lee

daffodil
04-16-2010, 11:31 AM
I've never seen propane cheaper than natural gas... Natural gas has always been the cheapest anywhere i've ever checked prices, and it's what i would go with, if it was available.

DM

Everyone I talk to complains of how high their gas bills are. And most are using it for heat and hot water I think. Also there's always that threat of the disconnect hanging over me. I hate that. Then you're really stuck because you're hooked in to that and can't switch to something else.

DM
04-16-2010, 01:00 PM
Everyone I talk to complains of how high their gas bills are. And most are using it for heat and hot water I think. Also there's always that threat of the disconnect hanging over me. I hate that. Then you're really stuck because you're hooked in to that and can't switch to something else.

Would it make you feel better if i complain to you how high my "propane" bill is?? lol

The truth is, both propane and nat gas ARE expensive, but i bet you propane will be more...

If you have propane and don't pay the bill, guess what happens?

DM

Anon001
04-16-2010, 01:17 PM
My turn... lol

Daff, when you read of someone using propane, they are usually living in the country where gas is not available. Most rural areas have no gas lines, making propane the only option for gas.

If given the choice, I would prioritize as:

1. Gas,
2. Propane,
3. Electric.

If you are in an area where there is natural gas such as city limits, they may not allow large bulk propane tanks.

As far as safety is concerned.... a bulk propane tank will not explode. It has a "pop off" to release propane if the pressure builds such as when they over fill the tank and the outside temperatures get high in the summer.

Paul

Quietgentleman
04-16-2010, 02:30 PM
Around here there is a meter charge of 10 dollars a month for natural gas. That's a 120 dollars a year I pay even if I don't use any natural gas.

QGM

randallhilton
04-17-2010, 02:02 AM
Look at the cost per therm and I think you'll find that LP & Nat gas are both cheaper than electric when it comes to heating anything bigger than a hair dryer.

Also remember: If you're on a tank, you'll still have heat when the power grid is down for whatever reason.

Ditto on getting someone who knows what they're doing for running the piping. Especially for propane because it's heavier than air which means it can accumulate in low places if it's leaking.

DM
04-17-2010, 11:27 AM
I don't know about Ohio, but around here nat gas keeps flowing even if the power goes out. Now, "maybe" it would quit if the entire country went down, but you will have bigger problems than that, if "that" ever happens and you live in a populated area.

Also, i'm on propane now, and there's no tank rent fee, as there was no meter fee for nat gas at my last home. But, some here say they have to pay a rent fee on their propane tanks, so i guess it all depends where you live.

DM

NCLee
04-17-2010, 12:41 PM
Around here, for some suppliers, it depends on how much propane is used. Over x amount and there's no rental fee. When we just had a propane cookstove, the 120 gal tank rental was $60 per year, because we didn't use enough to have it refilled at least once during a 12 month period.

Competition between propane suppliers is another factor. Our old supplier had a hefty fee to set the tank and hook up when we put in our propane furnance. A competitor of theirs, with a good reputation to boot, set our tank at no charge and their bulk propane price was $1.79 per gal. Old supplier also wanted to charge $2.09 for bulk, after charging that install fee.

Additionally, each supplier charged for copper and fittings used. Old supplier wanted a dollar more per foot of copper. OUCH!!

Needless to say, it does pay to shop around to get the best buy when dealing with propane companies.

Lee

AlchemyAcres
04-17-2010, 12:55 PM
Most propane suppliers are so crooked, they have to screw their socks on every morning!!!!

Bait-and-switch is a common tactic.
They'll quote a low price to get your business, yet the price will be significantly higher when they deliver!! Don't let them get away with it!!!
They especially love to prey on little old ladies on a fixed income because they rarely protest!! They're EVIL!!! I hate propane!!! LOL


~Martin

daffodil
04-17-2010, 02:09 PM
So if I ever do rebuild I should probably make the whole house natural gas then, lights and all. Or then again, maybe a mix of natural gas, wood, and solar. Lots of wind here, could probably use that too. Probably not a wise move to try to convert to natural gas now with the house in the condition it's in although the gas meter is there and some of the lines are still on the outside of the house.

firegirl969
04-21-2010, 02:33 AM
We switched to a propane stove last summer and just got our tankless lp hot water heater last week. I found a stove that used pilot lights, so it works even without electricity. We originally hooked it up to a 100lb cylinder we had. It lasted 4 months and I did lots of canning last summer. We now have a 110 gallon tank FIL gave us and we just purchased a 220 tank that will go further out in the yard for $75. Those tanks should last us 3-4 years for the stove and hot water. I would never go back to an electric stove. The reason is that when I cut off my gas stove it is off and the pot quits cooking, so no burning foods. I had a flat cooktop before, and it would stay hot for 20 minutes. I burned my arm several times after turning the stove off.

blackpowderbill
04-22-2010, 04:48 PM
i just had 300 gal propane delivered and it cost $2.50 gal. friggen rip off

blackpowderbill
04-22-2010, 04:58 PM
i just had 300 gal propane delivered and it cost $2.50 gal. friggen rip off

cinok
04-22-2010, 08:09 PM
i just had 300 gal propane delivered and it cost $2.50 gal. friggen rip off

What is the cost of naturaul gas in your area? Is it available? Supply and demand directly relates to the cost of any product. How far are you from the vendor?

Anon001
04-25-2010, 02:06 PM
i just had 300 gal propane delivered and it cost $2.50 gal. friggen rip off

Wow... That is a major rip off. I just went online and looked at "our" propane price (JacksonFarmers.com (http://jacksonfarmers.com)) and it is still sitting at $1.80.

Paul

NCLee
04-25-2010, 08:14 PM
Our last fill up, back in March was $1.79.

Lee

firegirl969
04-27-2010, 12:22 AM
Blackpowderbill,

Our propane price is sitting about where yours is also. I am going to start pricing out of town and see what they charge when they come through town. Maybe competition will be good.

cinok
04-27-2010, 12:38 AM
One thing to keep in mind is the tax on propane. Each state is diffferent and in some states a sales tax is applied. I wold look into the "cost" and then the applied taxes.

Anon001
04-27-2010, 12:43 PM
One thing to keep in mind is the tax on propane. Each state is diffferent and in some states a sales tax is applied. I wold look into the "cost" and then the applied taxes.
That's something I wouldn't have thought about suggesting. Here, they apply a 1/2% county heating tax. Some counties here charge as much as 1%. But, we pay no other taxes on it, unless it's for road use. SO... when I fill my 2 ton truck, I do it from my bulk tank. ;)

Paul

Pigzzilla
05-08-2010, 04:43 AM
Firegirl, We are on propane also. We built our home a bit over 2 years ago and put in the tankless waterheater. Nice cause there is no pilot light to eat up the propane. We did not like that it took so long for hot water to get to our bathroom. The waterheater is by the kitchen- on the opposite end of the house- so we ended up putting a second unit in the attic above the bathroom. Having the water run and run til it got hot to the shower was not a good idea cause we are also on a septic system and a well and just running gallons of water into the septic was not good.

pigzzilla

backlash
05-08-2010, 03:00 PM
Filled our BBQ tank yesterday.
$12.13 and it was completely empty.
Called around and to get 100 gal delivered it is $264 and the other place it is $204.
Plus tax of course.
Easy to figure out who to buy from.

Rimfire_Red
05-12-2010, 01:37 AM
I don't know about Ohio, but around here nat gas keeps flowing even if the power goes out. Now, "maybe" it would quit if the entire country went down, but you will have bigger problems than that, if "that" ever happens and you live in a populated area.

Also, i'm on propane now, and there's no tank rent fee, as there was no meter fee for nat gas at my last home. But, some here say they have to pay a rent fee on their propane tanks, so i guess it all depends where you live.

DM

As long as the compressor stations have power you will have NG. IF the SHTF the NG will stop flowing when the pressure differential equalizes. Same thing for a city/rural water system if the pumps stop or the water tower empties so it can no longer gravity feed flow will stop. We have 2 1000 gal tanks that I fill at summer fill prices. At this point we only heat with it and it will get us through the year with some to spare. One tank was a freebee - a friend switched to NG - the other one we bought. The gauge does not work on the freebee so we start it in the fall, switch for mid winter and then switch back in early spring and run it until it runs out. We put a measured 700 gallons in it - fill the other one full and are good for another year. Regardless of whether you have a propane or NG furnace when you lose power you lose your circulation fan and so it will not heat your house well w/o power unless you have a battery back up fan of some sort. For those of you new to this in the far north - LP STAYS LP at -40F. If it is that cold and your furnace goes out and won't restart pour hot water on line from tank and the valve. It needs to be a gas to flow to the furnace. Also - keeping a spare thermocouple that fits your furnace taped to the side of it is something to think about. If they fail it is in the middle of the night, below 0 F and on a holiday weekend. It has happened to us twice in 25 years......!

Just something to think about!

Prairie
05-12-2010, 12:50 PM
How north are you, Rimfire? I know that LP is in a liquid state at normal atmospheric pressure at -40, but at what temperatures will it start to give you problems? Does it slow down at -35 or does it run fine until -40 hits? I'm curious since we get maybe a week or two combined at -35, but only a few days of -40.

Rimfire_Red
05-12-2010, 01:25 PM
We are south of you, but have had our problems when the "offical" temp was below -35F. However - we were 15 + miles from the "official" recording site one time and about 20-25 miles from it the other time. We currently do not have a themometer outside that goes that low......once it gets below -30F and you have to go outside and care for livestock, check waterers and maybe plug in a tractor so you can start it later....another 2, 3...TEN degrees colder doesn't seem to make any difference....it is always just REALLY COLD!

Rimfire_Red
05-12-2010, 01:37 PM
I should add that it has to hit the -40F to stay a liquid - so it has to be that at your tank - laws of physics - you know that they are funny things. The propane will flow until it gets that cold. We don't worry about it until it happens. A few years ago we locally hit -44F "officially" (not a record low) but we had no problem with it. I am assuming that you know that actual air temp is what matters - "wind chill" has absolutely nothing to do with it. Wind chill has to do with the convective cooling on living organisims. Machinery will only get as cold as the air temp. Many folks don't seem to understand that concept...

MEBrian
05-30-2010, 03:33 AM
Also, i'm on propane now, and there's no tank rent fee, as there was no meter fee for nat gas at my last home. But, some here say they have to pay a rent fee on their propane tanks, so i guess it all depends where you live.

DM

We found the tank rental to be part of the price per gallon of propane, unless one has really nice fuel companies who don't care how much steel they have "out" not making them $. Most fuel companies enforce the practice of BOHICA. I'd be willing to bet not many companies can give tanks out for free, but can hide the price in the price per gallon of propane. We've BT/DT and so purchased our own 100 gallon tanks.
-----

One can possibly save large amounts of cash by buying your own tanks and shopping around for best price, at least we do. You'd have to check it out in your area. Owning our own tanks allows us to buy propane for 1/3 the price of paying the hidden rental fee figured into the price per gallon that everyone in Maine charges. Heck, lots of local companies have removed large tanks and gone to installing small tanks to reduce the amount of steel they "have out". It means they have to deliver more often, but since the fuel company doesn't pay for that, the customer does, they get away with it.

NG isn't an option for us, but we swapped to propane for cooking and hot water, from electric. We are saving at least 2/3 as much now as when we used electric. It's no contest. Again, we don't "rent" tanks in our propane bill. We bit the bullet and purchased them outright. The dollar saving from the first filling paid for the tanks. If we had to rent our tanks there would be no savings over electric, but we'd still have cooking and hot water when the power is out.

Yeah, they won't explode, but they can ignite as they vent off. The lines can be run anywhere though. If possible (I don't know your situation), to feel more comfortable put the tanks in a remote location. Of course a gas leak can result in an explosion if undetected, but that's why gas has scent mixed with it. And if properly installed, the lines are tested for leaks.

If you swap to propane be sure your appliances can operate w/o electricity, or have your own electrical generation. Being w/o juice with many modern propane appliances means they won't work. Good excuse for going solar. :D

DM
05-30-2010, 11:07 AM
We found the tank rental to be part of the price per gallon of propane, unless one has really nice fuel companies who don't care how much steel they have "out" not making them $. Most fuel companies enforce the practice of BOHICA. I'd be willing to bet not many companies can give tanks out for free, but can hide the price in the price per gallon of propane. We've BT/DT and so purchased our own 100 gallon tanks.
-----

One can possibly save large amounts of cash by buying your own tanks and shopping around for best price, at least we do. You'd have to check it out in your area. Owning our own tanks allows us to buy propane for 1/3 the price of paying the hidden rental fee figured into the price per gallon that everyone in Maine charges. Heck, lots of local companies have removed large tanks and gone to installing small tanks to reduce the amount of steel they "have out". It means they have to deliver more often, but since the fuel company doesn't pay for that, the customer does, they get away with it.

NG isn't an option for us, but we swapped to propane for cooking and hot water, from electric. We are saving at least 2/3 as much now as when we used electric. It's no contest. Again, we don't "rent" tanks in our propane bill. We bit the bullet and purchased them outright. The dollar saving from the first filling paid for the tanks. If we had to rent our tanks there would be no savings over electric, but we'd still have cooking and hot water when the power is out.

Yeah, they won't explode, but they can ignite as they vent off. The lines can be run anywhere though. If possible (I don't know your situation), to feel more comfortable put the tanks in a remote location. Of course a gas leak can result in an explosion if undetected, but that's why gas has scent mixed with it. And if properly installed, the lines are tested for leaks.

If you swap to propane be sure your appliances can operate w/o electricity, or have your own electrical generation. Being w/o juice with many modern propane appliances means they won't work. Good excuse for going solar. :D

Like i have mentioned before, most propane companys here will NOT fill a owner owned tank any longer... The ones that do, only want to do so for cystomers that use thousand of gallons of propane per year, as in farmers who dry their own corn... Being a high end use customer is also the only way you will get a better price than anyone else too, as from what i've seen around here, owning your own a 500 gallon tank won't allow you to "deal" on propane.

I do not own my own 500 gallon tank and i paid $1.799 for my propane this last season. I haven't found anyone here that bought a similar amount of propane that got it cheaper, so i may as well let my propane company take care of my tank. Also, they replaced both regulators with new ones last fall for FREE, if the tank would have been mine, i would have had to pay for that, and around here, NO ONE fills a tank if you have old regulators.

DM

Anon001
05-30-2010, 03:36 PM
Wow. that seems odd to me that the companies won't fill owner tanks. Here they don't mind either way. The co-op and another company won't rent the tanks, but only sell them. They aren't cheap.

Also, none of the propane companies in this part of the country will deliver less than 300 gallons... unless,... they happen to be passing by, or if you are on their "keep full" program.

They also won't deliver if the tank is small than 500 gallon. You can't have 5 100 gallon tanks and expect them to deliver propane.

Most of the time, if you watch local farm sales (auctions) you can pick up a 500 gallon tank for about $500 or a 1000 gallon tank for about $1000, maybe a hair more.

When I bought my tank used, the only thing I had to do was add a new $60 regulator.

Paul

Helmar
01-26-2011, 11:53 PM
Our oven is propane due to us living off the grid.
Right now, the line goes outside were its just hooked up to a 5 gallon propane tank, just like the BBQ grill is. depending on how much its used, which I would say with making soups, roasts several times a week, it will run for about a month.
The propane or Gas stoves tend to burn hotter than your electric stoves (hence, Now your cooking with Gas).

We also have a company that goes around filling smaller propane tanks on RV's in RV parks and such.
He has us on a schedule were he comes around before we run out.
That all works well.
He charges Less then the local Cenex rip off (most are) that will only fill there OWN rented Large tanks.
I own all of ours, including a 120 gallon one that we use to run a generator.
Sad part is, we don't have enough solar as of yet (waiting for the cost to get closer to a buck a watt).

Those types of propane services are around if you look or ask.

Helmar