# So You Want to Compare Coal Usage.

### So you want to compare coal usage.

This topic like all topics is frought with problems, to name a few.
1. I live in twice the heating degree days most members are in.
http://lwf.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/documentlib ... tingDD.pdf
http://www.degreedays.net/#generate This site gives description of Heating degree day, and generates based on zip code.
2. My coal is 7500 BTU per lb, unlike other coal.
3. I pay 65 dollars per ton and haul it 40 miles, 2.5 tons at a time.

If you want to ride in this discussion, set your beer down, buckle up, and break out your calculator, and be honest about how much you spent on coal last year.

I purpose a DPSPTHDD, Dollars Per Square foot Per Thousand Heating Degree Days.

This number attemps to compensate for coal cost, coal quality, weather conditions, and house size.

Raw Data needed
A. Dollars spent on coal last year, I will figure 100 dollars per ton, and 17 tons, result in a coal cost of 1700\$
( I would much rather say 1000\$ in coal but I bought fuel ect. for the truck)
B. Square footage of heated area, this varies as garages are heated part time in some systems.
C. Heating Degree Days for your area, see above link, please familliarize yourself with HDD by searching the web, I'm not up to describing it here.( for purpose of this exersize we will be using my adaptaion of HDD of 1000 HDD meaning I live in Alaska in a 16,000 HDD area this I will call a 16 Thousand HDD or 16 THDD (yes I know I'm over the eadge, hang on)).

This is a work hopfully in progress ( or the bablings of a idiot ) corrections in name and purpose are expected and will be added to the formula if deamed practical.
A divided by B divided by C equals your DPSPTHDD
Or in other words The number Short Bus wants to use to compare our heating systems.
.20 dollars per square foot, per thousand heating degree days.

Domestic hot water and garages skewing these results, I have ideas about how to incorporate these but lets see if this dimensia takes wings, i.e. best of anthracite coal forums.
I will say that last weekend I added insulation to my modest home, and will be insulating more in the future.
Last edited by Short Bus on Thu Dec 16, 2010 11:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
Short Bus

Stoker Coal Boiler: Kewanee boiler with Anchor stoker
Coal Size/Type: Chestnut / Sub-bituminous C
Other Heating: Propane wall furnace back up only

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

.034

150/ton, 4 ton for the year @ (13,400 btu/lb) uninsulated walls, probably 2600'sq and 6800HDD
Berlin

Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Will-Burt Combustioneer 77B
Coal Size/Type: Ohio BITUMINOUS pea stoker coal

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

About 6 ton @ \$245.00 this year. Intensionally heating 1700 square feet of living space to 73*. Un-intensionally heating 1700 square feet of basement to 68* (Kaa-2 boiler). Once in a while I put some heat in the shop with HITZER 30-95 stove.
oliver power

Stoker Coal Boiler: KEYSTOKER Kaa-2
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93 & 30-95, Vigilant (pre-Vigilant-II), D.S. 1600 Circulator
Baseburners & Antiques: MANY (Mostly when burning wood)

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

I am happy to join the insanity!!

4 ton @ \$205 per, 3900 sq ft, 5000 HDD from the map.

So...if I get the formula correct, 870 / 3900 / 5 = .04461 DPSPTHDD for coal usage....

However, the propane furnace does kick on now and then in early fall and late spring and through the winter if I am away for a couple days. And I burn some wood in early fall and late spring so the coal is not 100% of our heat. We also use the propane for cooking, water and dryer so I can't break out furnace usage, but we usually average 600 gallons every 2 years for total usage.

Edit to add: If I had to estimate % of coal usage for heat I would say 85%. So a guestimate on total DPSPTHDD would be .0525.

Should have figured in \$50 for fuel usage getting the coal, updated above numbers to include that....
Last edited by titleist1 on Thu Dec 16, 2010 11:44 am, edited 2 times in total.
titleist1

Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Harman Mag Stoker (old style) one in basement, one in workshop
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III on standby for long power outages
Coal Size/Type: Rice/Anthracite; Nut/Anthracite

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

0.121

Data from last year, which was also my first year in this house.

A. 3 tons of anthracite, \$750. 3 face cords of firewood, \$150. \$1000 gallons of No. 2 fuel oil, ~\$2500. \$3400 total.
B. Including the basement, we heat 3500 square feet. We also get domestic hot water from the boilers.
C. 8000 Heating degree days according to the chart.

3400 dollars / 3500 sq. ft / 8k HDD = 0.121, or 12.1 Cents Per Square foot Per Thousand Heating Degree Days.

-Rob
Rob R.

Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

oliver power wrote:About 6 ton @ \$245.00 this year. Intensionally heating 1700 square feet of living space to 73*. Un-intensionally heating 1700 square feet of basement to 68* (Kaa-2 boiler). Once in a while I put some heat in the shop with HITZER 30-95 stove.

Please present in the format requested by the original poster. From the map it looks like you are in the 7000 HDD zone, so I will do the math.

\$1470 spent on coal / 3400 sq. ft / 7k HDD = .062

-Rob
Rob R.

Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Coal Size/Type: Lehigh Rice
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

I added a link for more acurate HDD to help my number, but using this HDD I go the wrong way.

1700/540/14=22.5

Maybe I can drive eighty miles round trip for less than dollar a mile, I need to sharpen my pencil.
Short Bus

Stoker Coal Boiler: Kewanee boiler with Anchor stoker
Coal Size/Type: Chestnut / Sub-bituminous C
Other Heating: Propane wall furnace back up only

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

I'll give this a try..

roughly 15 tons @ \$200/ton..= \$3000 in coal

I heat a 4000sq ft house

I live in the 7500 range in Michigan.

So: 3000/4000/7.5 =0.10
But I also heat the floor of my 2400sqft shop to 55* so If I include that square footage

\$3000/6400/7.5=0.0625

I'm not sure how well only heating the shop floor to 55* factors in,, It certainly uses plenty of BTUs, but I'm only getting ~40* in the shop most days.

My old house was a bit smaller, but a disaster for BTU use. the new house is bigger but super-insulated and sealed.

I'm sure if I had my boiler in the basement of the house, I could save a lot of coal every year.. but I like keeping the dust, ashes and coal outdoors in the boiler building..

Greg L
LsFarm

Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

Ahhh the slippery slope of

I know it costs me too much to Heat my little place --

I have done this calculation

It only give me another reason or thought ramming around in my head so as to not sleep at night
Sting

Other Heating: OBSO Lennox Pulse "Air Scorcher" burning NG

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

Sting,

With profile pics like that who can sleep anyway? Happy Holidays!
Townsend

Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Coal Size/Type: Pea / Buck

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

0.20 DPSPTHDD is quite expensive, I can heat my house with natural gas / forced hot water for that amount (!). I have 6000 heating degree days. I heat 2000 sq. ft. I will burn perhaps 2.25 tons of coal this year (projection based on actual use since October and previous gas use history). I did not buy it, but if I did it would cost me \$585 at local prices, shopping around and pickup myself, or 0.05 DPSPTHDD.
lobsterman

Hand Fed Coal Stove: Chubby, 1980 Fully restored by Larry Trainer
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Chubby Jr, early model with removable grates

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

\$540/ 2400sqft / 6821HDD = 032.
stokerstroker66

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

Lobsterman is right .20 DPSPTHDD is high but I have some insulation problems, went on vacation came home, back up heat had house at 60 F, with all the doors inside open, and the pipes on the room side of the wallboard, I still had frozen burst pipes, I will be insulating this summer, wraping house with two inches of foam, building wrap, and new layer of siding.

I also need to improve my garage situation.

Baro has been purchased.
Short Bus

Stoker Coal Boiler: Kewanee boiler with Anchor stoker
Coal Size/Type: Chestnut / Sub-bituminous C
Other Heating: Propane wall furnace back up only

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

I'm only guesstimating here, but:

\$1,050/2500 ft-sq/6.356K degree days = 0.066 DPSPTHDD

My hope is that the real number will prove to be a bit less than this.
lsayre

Stoker Coal Boiler: AHS S130 Coal Gun
Coal Size/Type: Blaschak Anthracite Pea
Other Heating: Resistance Boiler (13.5 KW)

### Re: So you want to compare coal usage.

All these great threads on this topic and active all at the same time to boot! Couldn't resist doing this calculation at a base temp of 68*. This thread is a bean counter's virtual Paradise

Now given that I rescued 2.25 ton of 'free suburban mined coal' but included my vehicle depreciation and gasoline costs...
691*/3100/6.3k= 0.035 DPSPTHDD
• includes estimated cost of #2 fuel oil used @ \$263
If I run the calculation as if I bought the 'free' coal at \$172/ton delivered ...
1021/3100/6.3k= 0.052 DPSPTHDD

Now I feel good about all this work!
VigIIPeaBurner

Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker Koker
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vermont Casting Vigilant II 2310
Other Heating: #2 Oil Furnace