Cost of LPG heating

Discussion in 'Home energy' started by FMS, Nov 15, 2007.

  1. FMS

    FMS Registered User

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    12
    Hi all! Was wondering if anyone can help me. In the middle of a self-build and we were originally planning on installing geothermal heat pump but doesn't look like this is going to work out now due to a number of factors. We are looking into gas heating as an alternative and was just wondering if anyone can advise me on approximate cost of filling an LPG bulk tank and how long a fill would last. House is approx 2400 sq feet and will be using lpg for underfloor heating and hot water only.

    Thanks!
     
  2. lfcfan

    lfcfan Frequent Poster

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    73
    Hi FMS. We are a few weeks from moving into a house around the same size as yours and are using LPG for underfloor heating and 5 Rads. We also have solar panels for water heating. We have a Half Tonne tank from Flo Gas which costs roughly €1,000 to fill I think and this should do you for a year or more, depending on levels of insulating etc. Flogas costs €225 for the tank and they give you €600 worth of Gas free on your first fill.
     
  3. johnnyg

    johnnyg Frequent Poster

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    600
    would people recommend gas or oil if they had the choice, which works out cheaper?
     
  4. galwaytt

    galwaytt Frequent Poster

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    on a per-litre basis, oil could be (slightly) cheaper. Over the lifetime of the system, Gas will be cheaper. It's cleaner, less prone to breakdowns, the boilers are more long-lived, etc etc.

    Gas is also more suitable for UFH - oil is not. Reason for this is that gas boilers modulate to produce hot water over a wide range - typically 30-80 degrees. So, if you UFH only needs 40 deg water, that's all the boiler will produce. An oil boiler, however, can't do that - it's either on, or off, and typically in the 60 degree range. So, to delivery 40 deg water to your floor, it has to mix down with cooler water at a mixing valve, before sending to the floor. Just a pain, if you ask me.

    Besides, someone show me an oil boiler that hasn't got 'smelly' or hasn't needed major parts after 10 years.

    I've had UFH and LPG for 10 yrs, and 2200sq ft dormer costs about Eur 125/mth for all heating - water, floors, and two fires.
     
  5. brendy818518

    brendy818518 Guest

    Im in the middle of building a 1700 square feet house and cant decide between oil or LPG i am fitting solar pannels and rads.Any ideas on how much it costs to install LPG and what the running costs would be?
     
  6. galwaytt

    galwaytt Frequent Poster

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    571
    very much a how-long-is-a-piece-of-string question, really..........Gas boilers can be more expensive to buy, but I find ours have been very, very cheap to maintain over the years. They have needed no parts whatsoever from wear/tear. Unless oil ones have changed drastically over the years, they start to go downhill from day 1......

    Our last fill cost Eur 270.

    How long it lasts is all down to your house - insulation levels, etc. It'll last no less than oil, if that's what you want to know - and you can have your fires/cooker off it too, so don't forget to factor that into things.

    What sort of energy standard are you aiming for with your house?
     
  7. lfcjfc

    lfcjfc Frequent Poster

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    167
    Galwaytt,
    Your information on LPG is very interesting. After much research, I am at the point where I have to make a decision on heating system. I ruled out GSHP a long time ago based on (i) how long it would take to pay for itself and (ii) nobody could convince me that the system wouldnt cost money before it paid for itself. Anyway, I am still though trying to make the decision between gas and oil and am wondering about a few things:
    Your running costs sound impressive - is your house high spec. on insulation?
    How convenient is it to get your gas tank filled - can you ring and get a fill that same day like oil or do you have to be planning way ahead?
    In the current climate of rising fuel costs - is there any reason why gas would become proportionally more expensive/harder to get than oil in the future?
    Is the LPG-run heating system any more complex than the oil-run? Is is just a case of swapping one boiler for another?

    Thanks
     
  8. AndyH

    AndyH Frequent Poster

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    53
    OP,
    LPG is a by product of oil refining, so it's cost will always be directly related to rising oil prices.

    If you go with LPG, buy a gas tank outright yourself and don't rent from a specific company, otherwise you are tied to the company for supply and lose the ability to negociate the best available price with other suppliers. The apparent bonus of any initial "freebies" will be nullified after a few years of operation.
     
  9. Strathspey

    Strathspey Frequent Poster

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    81
    If you buy the LPG gas tank outright, would this still be through Flogas or Calor Gas. Is there perhaps an independent supplier and installer?
    Thanks
    Pat
     
  10. olddog

    olddog Frequent Poster

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    306
    I understand that the best way to compare the price of oil and LPG heating is the cost per kWhr of both.

    Heating oil provides circa 10.4 kWhr per litre

    The kWhr per litre rating of LPG varies depending on the makeup of the gas ( the supplier should bill based on KWhr )

    Of course the efficiency of the boiler to be used can also be factored in .....

    It would be really useful if people would post what they are being charged per litre or kWhr for LPG & oil

    Olddog
     
  11. galwaytt

    galwaytt Frequent Poster

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    571
    There are only two suppliers afaik, Calor and Flogas, and both are near-identical, so, does it make any difference.........?

    As for buying the tank, I'd advocate leasing it. If you lease it, the Gas company have to inspect and maintain - and insure -it. They also have to change it if it becomes suspect. Leasing is Eur76 p.a. To buy would mean you'd have to keep it 10 years to stay even-steven........at which point it may/may not need changing. If it does, and you own it....you pay for it. If it does, and you lease it............they pay for it. There's no financial benefit one way or the other as far as I can see it....
     
  12. mercman

    mercman Frequent Poster

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    This an old thread but an ongoing problem.

    Has anyone noticed any change of the price of LPG from Calor or Flogas recently ? With the price of Natural Gas fluctuating, one would have thought that there would be a decrease imminet.
     
  13. RSMike

    RSMike Frequent Poster

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    148
    The SEI Cost Comparison is always worth looking at especially as it converts all fuels to a standard cent per Kwh figure, regardless of how they are sold/supplied.

    http://www.sei.ie/Publications/Statistics_Publications/Fuel_Cost_Comparison/

    According to the last Comaprsion (Oct 09), Bulk LPG is supposed to be down 18% since Oct 2008 although unit cost looks a bit pricey at 10.22/Kwh versus oil at 5.97/Kwh
     
  14. Charlie 07

    Charlie 07 Frequent Poster

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    58
    I have LPG/UFH combo. Love the UFH, hate the LPG cost. Doing research at the mo to see how to replace it.
     
  15. falasarana

    falasarana Registered User

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    16
    Calor Gas who have apparently been absorbing the recent increases in global prices , wrote me today to inform that the unit cost (Per m3) would increase by 0.14E.
    Has anyone else received similar mail?
    Did the regulator recently announce an 8% reduction in gas prices to be introduced in February, or am i dreaming?
     
  16. fmc

    fmc Frequent Poster

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    121
    falasarana, the gas the regulator refers to is natural gas. calor and most of flogas is usually propane or lpg which is part of the oil process as was stated above, so regardless of what the regulator says if oil rises so will your lpg gas whether metered or by the tank. most calor metred installations will have an underground or above ground storage facility.
    I had the same letter today.
     
  17. mercman

    mercman Frequent Poster

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    3,927
    Why is it that when the price of Oil rises the cost of LPG heads north, but if and when the price of Oil decreaes the providers of LPG do not act in a reciprocal arrangement.

    Has anybody's price of Gas dropped from when Oil was $150 per barrell to where it is now at approximately $80 per barrell ?
     
  18. galwaytt

    galwaytt Frequent Poster

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    571
    Actually, yes.
     
  19. fmc

    fmc Frequent Poster

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    121
    mercman its usually up three times down once or twice and only when the crude or brent oil barrell drops significantly.
     
  20. villa 1

    villa 1 Frequent Poster

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    356
    I would recommend insulating your house to current specs. fitting an oil fired condensing boiler, 2/3 solar panels, and a buffer tank to feed your underfloor circuits. I you fit radiators take them directly off your oil boiler on a seperate circuit. It is a known fact in the plumbing industry that Lpg is more expensive to run than Oil firing and indeed gas boilers do break down and are very costly to repair. That is my opinion, 30yrs in the business and i'm not related to any arabs!!