Thursday, September 13, 2012

High Propane Prices Might Curb Cookouts And Fire Pits This Summer

When it costs more to cook outside on the grill or on your propane fire pit than going to a restaurant, it may be time to find a new source for your portable propane tank refill needs. With propane gas prices reaching levels of between two dollars and fifty cents to over three dollars per gallon in some areas, it becomes less cost effective do use your outdoor cooking devices. You can find local suppliers that do not try to take advantage of your situation and charge reasonable industry prices, which will still be high, but at the same time not gouge you for the benefit of extra profit. Keeping warm on the backyard deck at night with your propane fire pit may also be a luxury that may well have to be curbed until prices come into alignment. To make sure your not wasting money with faulty equipment, always check the lines for leaks and around the regulator valve as well. You may be letting half or even more of your gas escape and not even know it when you really think it is shut off. If your tanks are over fifteen to twenty years old, it may be time to get new ones or at the very least invest in new lines, and a regulator valve to insure your family’s safety, and to keep growing fuel costs down. After having made such a large investment in your pit, it really does not make sense to discard your LP version for a wood or electric model. If natural gas service is available to your home, then call them and ask about converting your fire pit to their product, and see what the costs involved are to accomplish this task. It may be more affordable to operate in this manner, and you will be able to repurpose your outdoor appliance to save money at the same time. You may want to explore other options for other home appliances that you own that can be converted back and forth depending on which fuel prices is trending lower for the year. Usually you can be assured that when gasoline prices drop propane will follow since it is a derivative of the oil and gas industry. Propane is a great clean burning product that also has many commercial and transportation uses, as even private automobile owners have even converted their pickup trucks, and the life over to propane in order to get better mileage and try to save the Earth’s atmosphere by using cleaner and greener products for transportation purposes.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Make Energy Savings Simple

Energy savings is on everyone’s mind these days. Fuel prices have shot through the roof over the last several months. Crude oil prices are over $100 a barrel again. Some of this can be attributed to increase demand by China and India as well as by the United States. This leads us to pay more money for the gasoline in our cars and the heat for our homes.
I live in the Northeast of the United States so I keep a close eye on oil prices. I switched from heating oil to heat my home to propane gas a few years ago. It seems as if propane prices  are cheaper than heating oil prices. For example oil prices rose around 45 cents a gallon this winter while propane prices were up only 15 cents. I also like using propane gas because it is a cleaner burning fuel. Heating oil is very dirty, but propane is much more environmentally friendly. So not only am I lowering my energy costs, but I’m also helping to clean the air around me.

But I didn’t just stop at switching to propane to lower my costs. I also try to weatherize my home to make it more energy efficient. I hate wasting money, so I do what I can to insulate my home.

When you think of weatherizing your home, you might be thinking you have to spend a fortune on windows, door and insulation. If you have the money to do that, that’s great. But for most of us on a tight budget, we need to take other steps to find low cost ways to save energy in our home.

You can start by looking for the obvious things first. Check around your front door. Can you see gaps where light is coming through? Perhaps you can have someone stand outside the door at night with a flashlight and have him or her shine around the edges while you are inside the door. If you see light coming through, then you know cold air can leak into your home that way. To fix that you can go to any hardware store and buy weatherstripping. If you already have weatherstripping around the door, note how thick it is. This will be the same thickness you will buy when you replace it. A typical roll will do one door and costs under $3. In just minutes you can stop that door from being drafty.

This is just one idea to save money on your heating costs.