CaptainHornet wrote: I do not burn coal because none is available here in South Carolina.
How far are you from Christiansburg, VA? That's in the far southwest part of VA on I 81 - almost West Virginia, Tenn. and a tiny bits of NC/SC. I know they have an anthracite dealer of bagged coal there or at least they used to. I saw the listing when I was looking for coal in Northern VA. Since the cost of bagged coal is pretty much the same regardless of the distance shipped, I bet it would be about the same in Southwest VA - $270 a ton. I bet you could find bit coal even easier in southern West VA – around Bluefield. For my money, instead of spending my time splitting wood, I’d sell the wood, rent a trailer and drive a reasonable distance to get coal. Of course, what’s reasonable would have to be determined by you.
I know I enjoy always having a warm house to come home to with little or no attention having been paid to the fire for 12 or more hours. I like waking up to a warm house and not having to worry about the fire having gone out. I know I save 50% or more on my yearly heating bill. Last March my gas usage was less then the taxes and fees I was charged! I know I like not having to mess with the wood; because coal doesn’t get infested I can put it right outside my door or even inside without fear of what may be living in it. It burns wet for Pete’s sake. I even use the ash to repair the holes my stupid dogs dig.
Fortunately, I’ve found dealers in sort of in my area – I drive 70 miles - but even if I didn’t I’d be willing to drive a day or 2 out and back for the benefits of coal heat. So what if after deducting my cost to get the coal, I’d be saving a couple of hundred dollars less. I’m still saving a lot of money and that’s money that goes in my pocket instead of the gas companies. My house is warmer, too.
Yeah, people may look at you weird but think about all the time you’d have not having to deal with the wood all summer long. Instead, a coupled of days and you are done thinking about your heat for next winter. Something to think about anyway; enjoy the great weather! Lisa