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Old 05-23-2010, 11:42 PM
 
632 posts, read 1,836,384 times
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Just wondering what you do--do you own your own tank or "rent" it? What are some of the gas companies in the area? Any to avoid using? We're building in an area (Wake / Granville co. area) where we'll have propane (heating, cooking) and don't know which to do--which is best, etc. Any thoughts for me? We've never used propane before.

Thanks!
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Old 05-24-2010, 03:27 AM
 
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I would seriously think twice (maybe three times) about propane as a primary heat source. We use propane for our gas logs and gas grill but using it as a primary source would be very expensive.

Frank
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Old 05-24-2010, 06:41 AM
 
Location: Melbourne, FL
1,007 posts, read 5,647,330 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TabbyCats View Post
Just wondering what you do--do you own your own tank or "rent" it? What are some of the gas companies in the area? Any to avoid using? We're building in an area (Wake / Granville co. area) where we'll have propane (heating, cooking) and don't know which to do--which is best, etc. Any thoughts for me? We've never used propane before.

Thanks!

It would be best to purchase your tank. If you lease it, you have no choice but to use the same gas company for your fuel. If you purchase your tank, you can buy gas for anyone (it is much more competitive). My own tank is purchased and we are able to negotiate a better price for gas. We originally had Suburban, then McCracken and now we are going to Amerigas. Suburban wouldn't negotiate, McCracken can't get our invoice straight and their customer service is not very good.
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Old 05-24-2010, 08:50 AM
 
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Thanks for the replies.

Jane--is it more like shopping around for the best price or "negotiating" with each one (I'm not good at that)?

Thanks.
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Old 05-24-2010, 09:15 AM
 
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Definitely a contact sport. You'll get quoted a price for your first delivery but after that all bets are off. Some companies offer a season lock in price in the Fall but outside of that propane prices change daily.

Agree that Suburban generally has the highest prices . We're using Amerigas now, but you still need to call and discuss price for every delivery.

Good reading here:

Propane-Prices.com - Frequently Asked Propane Pricing Questions

I would seriously consider a dual fuel heating system. Propane is expensive.


Frank
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Old 05-24-2010, 10:23 AM
 
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Thanks, Frank. I just emailed our builder about using dual-fuel.
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Old 05-24-2010, 01:52 PM
 
Location: Wake Forest
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Sometimes its is exactly as it sounds. "Pro Pain!" But that is generally when the bills roll in along with the tank fill truck! Found it easier to be on the budget and negotiate the rate before signing. Bought a house with a underground tank that the "Pro Pain" companies owns. Next time I will own my own tank if I must have "Pro Pain" to heat my house. Although home is split heat between "Pro Pain" and Heat Pump and that make it "Less Pain" at times! Long for the days of natural gas but fall short of wanting an all electric home!

So own your own tank and may the best "Pro Pain" in the tank 4-ever fill it!


In the for what its worth Department. Currently on assignment in upstate NY and in September the area is facing a large increase in their natural gas and electric rates! My comment on that is simply C'est la vie a.k.aSi La Vie NY!
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Old 05-24-2010, 02:36 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
94 posts, read 393,090 times
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Default My propane experience...

I'm a First-time homeowner, with a three bedroom, 1300sqft home that's one level ...Coming from apartment living, I darn near poo'd myself this past heating season (Oct-Mar) when Diversified Energy first filled up my buried 325gal tank in November via locked in rate at $2.19 gallon = $600.17

Diversified came back mid-January and had to fill it back up = $557.52 ... so out of shear panic, I turned my thermostat down from 64 degrees to 58 degrees while I worked and slept... then they came back in February = $202.11 and again in March = $148.09

The propane rate in January was $2.96 ... so had I went 'as needed' as a handful of people suggested, I really would've been up a creek, so to speak.

People have told me this past Winter was unusually cold, everyone saw a jump in their gas/electric/LP heating bill, but my thought is, Electric pricing doesn't fluctuate $0.80 in 4 months, so if budgeting is a concern for you, my advice is to avoid propane if you can, or get a small tank for power outages to support gas logs if you have them.

...everything in my home is electric, except the heat.
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Old 05-24-2010, 03:59 PM
 
Location: Raleigh
542 posts, read 1,520,370 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TabbyCats View Post
Thanks, Frank. I just emailed our builder about using dual-fuel.
If the home your building is not already Energy Star certified, I would ask for that too as there would be an independent third party checking for proper air barriers, proper insulation installation, and then verifying everything at final with a blower door test for the home and a duct test for your ductwork. As long as your home has not been sheetrocked there is still time to have it certified.

Mike
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Old 05-24-2010, 04:08 PM
 
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Wow, I get antsy when my monthly electricity bill approaches $200 in Jan/Feb. It's about half that in August. I use a heat pump and I have a comparable home.
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