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Heating oil at 3.69 a gallon or $925 for a 250 gallon fill who can afford this

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by jmcp, Nov 26, 2011.

  1. bluedogz

    bluedogz Minister of Fire

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    NE Maryland
    Correctly stated.

    Futures are nothing more than an agreement between two parties to trade a commodity at a set price at some future date. Those of us heating with oil are familiar with a "lock-in" price that our oil man offers prior to actual delivery (usually, as long as we buy 1000 gal. or something.) That, my friends, is a futures contract- I'll pay you X for Y commodity, but not till Z time. This shifts the risk of price changes from the buyer to the seller.

    Where futures get hairy is that this "contract" can be traded on a largely unregulated secondary exchange. So, if your oil carrier locked in X price for you on Z date, his income is based on that margin. This is not so big for Joe Blow HHO Deliveries, but imagine Joe is an airline burning 55 gallons a minute times several hundred jetliners, and you'll see why the fuel futures market is so huge- ANYONE can introduce themselves as an intermediary between you and Joe, more or less gambling that the price of HHO will move one way or another. THAT is the proverbial "speculator."

    This is only one of the reasons that the delivered price of HHO (or gasoline, for example) is so volatile. Another is that there's not a lot of margin in the product; a typical gas station makes more profit off the pack of smokes you bought while filling up than they did on the gas, but the gas was the loss-leader that got you there. Our demand for cheap gas did this, encouraging gas stations to move away from the mom-n-pop "service station" model to the multi-pump convenience store model. It often is frustrating to hear a person assign blame to "greedy oil companies" for fuel prices when in fact it was our own demand for fossil fuels that gave those companies a reason to exist.

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  2. maple1

    maple1 Minister of Fire

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    I just did that with my numbers here (not sure why I didn't before), and my current 15 cent electricity would be equivalent to $1.65/litre oil (more or less).

    Jeez, I hope $1.65/litre oil is a ways away yet, $1.10 is bad enough...
  3. Gasifier

    Gasifier Minister of Fire

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    Hey,

    Just another visitor from the boiler room. Cool post jmcp. I have two brothers who use pellet stoves and they love them. Saving money and simple with less of the work than heating with wood. I bought my house 17 years ago. If I remember right the price of oil was $0.89/gallon. I heated this large apartment house with oil because it was inexpensive enough to do so. After about 10 years of renting I converted the house over to one large house and attached garage. The remodel was done a little at a time over a several years. Long story. But I started heating with a Wood Stove in the basement about 6 years ago when oil went up to around $2/gallon. That wood stove heated about 60-70% of the house. I loved the wood stove. But the price of oil just kept going up. I just purchased an indoor wood gasification boiler last spring when they were on sale. I also installed a large storage tank with it. The system heats 100% of my entire house, garage, and my Domestic Hot Water. All with wood. With an indirect hot water heater I can use it to heat my DHW year round because of the large heat storage tank. Depending on temperatures, I use to go through between 1600-2000 gallons of oil a year. That would be about $5600-7500 today! When I went to the wood stove I cut my consumption down to about 500-600 gallons a year. My boiler system came on line October 1, 2011. I had 1/4 tank of oil. I still have 1/4 tank now. What a relief. Thanks for this thread about oil. I just happen to see it in recent forum subjects on the web page. Have a good one.
  4. jtakeman

    jtakeman Minister of Fire

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    Northwestern CT.
    Thanks for the explanation bluedogz! :coolsmile:
  5. rickwai

    rickwai Feeling the Heat

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    Nov 1, 2011
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    ohio
    WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 160F seems a little warm for DHW. Recommended temp is no higher than 126F I think?
  6. JoeP

    JoeP Member

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    Loc:
    Upstate NY
    I made alot of changes here, insulated home, Installed pellet Stove best move yet! took out propane hotwater heater installed new energy star Electric hot water heater, bought new cook Stove propane but electric start. Called propane company and told them come get thier tank. Bought 100lb tank have it filled myself just for cooking. Next move buy another pellet stove. I could of bought a couple ton of pellets for what fuel oil cost, best of all Money stays in the USA. I will look into the Pellet stove water heater thanks
  7. silverfox103

    silverfox103 Feeling the Heat

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    Loc:
    Littleton, NH
    I went down a similar path Joe, started with one pellet stove, added an electric water heater, bought a second pellet stove to balance the heat. Goal this year, don't use any oil; so far so good!

    Tom C.
  8. BradH70

    BradH70 Feeling the Heat

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    It would be great if some of the members that have switched from using HHO to using electric to heat DHW could post what they believe there savings have been. Include how much oil was used per year compared to electric bill increase over 12 months. Also include number of baths and number of people in the household.

    I'm contemplating switching to electric to heat our DHW. Using the PSNH rate per kWh, I would be saving $250-$400 (yes, that is 1 or 2 tons of pellets) a year, depending on what numbers are used for oil consumption and price and the manufacturers estimated kWh/year cost of operation for the hot water tank. This savings does not include the up front cost of a new take and installation. Tankless systems are a little harder to determine annual cost since it really depends on usage (gallons per year?). However, I did find and equation that seemed to make sense - 365 * 12.02/EF * kWh rate = estimated annual operating cost. Using this equation, the operating cost is right around the same as an electric tank system.
  9. silverfox103

    silverfox103 Feeling the Heat

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    Hi Brad

    I'm not a numbers cruncher, but in my town we have are own utility and probably the cheapest electric rates in the state (we have a hydro dam). It was a no brainer to swap to electric, I know we are saving. I also just started thinking about putting the hot water heater on a time clock.

    Tom C.
  10. firecracker_77

    firecracker_77 Minister of Fire

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    My sister used to live in CT and she locked in a rate for the 2008-2009 season after oil prices went crazy in summer '08. Then, oil dropped like a stone in winter '08 and she got hung out to dry on that price. In the midwest, natural gas is cheap. None of that heating oil nonsense. I burn wood because I like it, not necessarily to save money.
  11. JoeP

    JoeP Member

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    Upstate NY
    I could tell you this,Since changing to Electric hot water bill is maybe 15 more than before. thats 3 people showering once aday plus dishes, daughter takes alonger time LOL but propane was budget price $180 month (they where fixing to increase it) cooking + hotwater, so Iam saving just have'nt rip it down to exact.
  12. whit

    whit Member

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    Loc:
    Southern VT
    One of the guys who worked on my oil furnace told me they last longer when used for hot water as well as heat. He said if they're off for the summer, there's a lot more corrosion. Claimed having it fire up to heat water year round can double its life.

    Me, I don't know. Apologies for going so far off topic here.
  13. Luvmyempyre

    Luvmyempyre New Member

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    Ct
    We built our house in 1998 and the first oil fill up was at .84 the lowest we ever paid was .69. The most we ever paid was 4.03 that's almost a 6 fold increase over 13 years .
  14. jmcp

    jmcp New Member

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    lower bucks
    The way its going diesel fuel will only be used in transportation no more heating ,pellets are a good alternative but some people cannot lug a 40 lb bag around whats a retireee in frail health and a fixed income to do with these prices maybe the bulk delivery and silo would work.
  15. Bank

    Bank Feeling the Heat

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    S. Maine
    Electric water heater is on my agenda by Christmas, I will be using oil as a back-up.
  16. ironman70

    ironman70 Member

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    Loc:
    Genoa, OH
    I've heard that tankless water heaters don't do well with hard well water. Thoughts?
  17. hemlock

    hemlock Feeling the Heat

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    east coast canada
    I switched from indirect oil to an electric Marathon DWH, and am saving quite a bit of money (about $50-60 per month). Once this oil tank runs dry, out it goes for good.
  18. ByCo

    ByCo Member

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    I'm on my fourth year with an electric tankless water heater and haven't noticed any drop off in performance yet. I have very hard water, the maximum life expectancy for coffee makers in my house is nine months. The manufacturer claimed that hard water was not a problem because the water was always moving when the elements are on so deposits can't build up. That could be because it sure seems like I have to clean the deposits from the shower head and faucet aerators a lot more often than I used to.
  19. nate379

    nate379 Guest

    I would not figure that a gas fired water heater vs my indirect fired one would make too much difference. I do know it's near impossible to run out of hot water with my setup, even when I hook the pressure washer to the water heater to wash stuff.
  20. mepellet

    mepellet Minister of Fire

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    What type of energy star electric water heater? To my knowledge regular electric water heaters are not energy star rated. Same thing with electric clothes dryers.
  21. Mainely Saws

    Mainely Saws Member

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    I agree with a previous posting that having a number of choices for heat is a plus . I heat mainly with a wood stove but I also have a propane stove ( Lopi Berkshire ) & some electric baseboard units . I have an eletric hot water heater that has two insulating blankets around it . Since I took the oil furnace out , I have a spare chimney that I want to use for a basement pellet stove install . I intend to use the pellet stove for those really cold nights in Jan/Feb .
    An electric water heater can be a bit pricey to run but compared to an oil fired water heater there are next to no maintenence costs .
  22. Luvmyempyre

    Luvmyempyre New Member

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    The good thing about electric water heaters is that they are 99% energy efficient,the bad thing is that electric is the most expensive and you are at the mercy of the giant power companies. In CT over 50% of our power comes from oil fired and natural gas fired generators,so you can expect to pay more every year.
  23. DonD

    DonD Member

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    Interesting... we have a big propane tank that is owned by Amerigas. We only use 60 gal per year for cooking and Amergas tries to charge me tank rental because we don't meet the minimum. I usually get them to drop the rental charge but playing that game every year is getting old.

    We want to keep propane for cooking but didn't think we had any options other than sticking with a big delivery company like Amerigas. I'd love to tell them to come get their tank. What exactly did you do? How do you get the 100 lb tank filled? Bring it somewhere? Are there companies out there that will deliver to your tank?

    I was actually trying to think of ways to use more propane (Domestic HW? Genny? Pipe to my barbecue?) so I don't have to worry about the rental. I'd rather get smaller tank like you and get it filled.
  24. PJPellet

    PJPellet Minister of Fire

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    I agree, details please... :) I would love to do the same thing.
  25. BradH70

    BradH70 Feeling the Heat

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    South West NH
    When we built our house 8 years ago, I went to one of the local gas suppliers and asked if I could buy a 100 gallon (not pound) tank and they had no problem with it. I actually still use them to fill the tank up. It is used only for cooking and the clothes dryer.

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