Bratkinson wrote:I hooked up to gas when one of my friends said that the gas company was making the connection to the street for free. That alone saved me about $1000...and that was in 2000. I put in a high efficiency gas furnace and gas water heater at that time.
It was 4 years ago that as the price of gas started climbing, I switched to coal. Loved it immediately. But as the cost of gas has dropped and dropped, I carefully weighed my costs. 2 seasons ago, I figure using coal cost about $100 more than gas. I didn't care. The comfort of steady temperature in the house was well worth the $100.
But the cost of gas keeps falling. This past season, I heated with coal 12/10 - 3/15. That was $900 for 3 tons of coal here in Western MA. Just to get a 'benchmark', I kept my gas furnace set for a constant 70 for the past month and just got the bill...$100. That was with temps in the mid 20s to mid 40s except for a day or two. So, I'll say double that for 10s to 30s in the 3 coldest months. That's still a savings of $300 for the season if I use gas without the 'set back' thermostat I have. Call it $400 or more with the setback 'stat. As a result, I think I've heated with coal for the last time. I'll definitely miss it. The cost difference is too great to ignore.
BUT...I still have about 400 pounds just in case of another week-long power outtage like we had for the Halloween surprise of 2011! It'd take me about 30 minutes to 'get back online' again with the coal. But as I'm painting everything on the inside for long-term rust-free storage, I'd have to wait until night to fire up as it will stink and smoke something fierce for an hour or so!
N/gas is absurdly low and the *censored* is gonna hit fan soon! So I suggest you hang onto to your coal quips because its only a matter of time... Oil prices are rediculous high and gas will eventually be on par again (after they have secured all the folks into converting again). This is like a never ending cycle that has gone on for decades & decades to keep "the man down" Coal on the other hand is a constant and always has been and allows to "keep the man up" ... next on the list is ripping out all the comcast wires out of my property then next if i get ambicious is a wind turbine or maybe some panels .... as a great man once said.... "I have a Dream"!