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oil v. gas

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scrook_2
scrook_2 Member Posts: 610
Does your equipment due to be replaced soon anyway, the question being whether to go with new oil equipment or to switch to new gas equipment, or is it just "should I replace my good, working oil equipment with new gas equipment?"

If the former, it depends on (among numerous other things) whether you think oil will, from now on, stay more expensive, BTU for BTU, than Nat Gas, or whether market forces will drive NG back into parity, with oil (which in the NE US has meant residential retail nat. gas costing a little (though more stable in price week to week than oil)more more than residential retail #2 oil for most winters).

Also, in this case, if you do not already have gas piped into the house from the street, does this offer the opportunity to have it piped *to* the house from the street, and a meter set installed, for reduced or no cost (conditional on switching to it for heating fuel), thereby permitting you to also install a nat. gas stove, dryer, outside lantern, grill, etc., etc. (vs. electric or 20 lb propane powered/fueled -- though there will still be the costs of appliances and for the interior piping) -- at the expense perhaps of losing your current heating system/fuel vendor, if he doesn't also install & service gas equipment.

If you have a good working system vs. one at end of life, it probably would be hard to ever recover the cost of premature replacement regardless of gas vs. oil price differentials.

If I had to guess, the prices will probably settle back to near their historical ratios, (though likely higher than they were in the last few years) but that the savings of the last few years from using oil vs. nat. gas (in the NE anyway where oil is common/popular) of will get eaten up this winter.

If the question was propane (LP) vs. oil for cost, I'd stay oil without a doubt.

One man's opinion, for what it's worth.

Comments

  • Dan_49
    Dan_49 Member Posts: 2
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    oil v. gas

    I am an HO in Westchester Co. NY. I currently have oil heat in my home and I'm very happy with my supplier. However, in light of the growing differntial between gas and oil prices, should I consider converting gas
  • zeke
    zeke Member Posts: 223
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    No, oil and gas prices will track each other in the long run.
  • scrook_2
    scrook_2 Member Posts: 610
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    Does your equipment due to be replaced soon anyway, the question being whether to go with new oil equipment or to switch to new gas equipment, or is it just "should I replace my good, working oil equipment with new gas equipment?"

    If the former, it depends on (among numerous other things) whether you think oil will, from now on, stay more expensive, BTU for BTU, than Nat Gas, or whether market forces will drive NG back into parity, with oil (which in the NE US has meant residential retail nat. gas costing more (though more stable in price week to week than oil) than residential retail #2 oil for most winters).

    Also, in this case, if you do not already have gas piped into the house from the street, does this offer the opportunity to have it piped *to* the house from the street, and a meter set installed, for reduced or no cost (conditional on switching to it for heating fuel), thereby permitting you to also install a nat. gas stove, dryer, outside lantern, grill, etc., etc. (vs. electric or 20 lb propane powered/fueled -- though there will still be the costs of appliances and for the interior piping) -- at the expense perhaps of losing your current heating system/fuel vendor, if he doesn't also install & service gas equipment.

    If you have a good working system vs. one at end of life, it probably would be hard to ever recover the cost of premature replacement regardless of gas vs. oil price differentials.

    If I had to guess, the prices will settle back to near their historical ratios, (market supply and demand forces (including industrial and large commercial not just residential heating) being what they are, though likely (assuredly?) both will be higher than they were in the last few years). The savings of the last few years from using oil vs. nat. gas (in the NE anyway where oil is common/popular) may get eaten up this winter, next winter, and beyond is anybodys bet though.

    If the question was propane (LP) vs. oil for cost, I'd stay oil without a doubt. If oil vs N.G. unless there are other compelling reasons, beyond *current* pricing, I'd stay w/ the devil you know.

    One man's opinion, for what it's worth.
  • Big Ed_3
    Big Ed_3 Member Posts: 170
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    Also in New York

    There are a lot of surcharges and taxes added to gas bills . Sorta like your cell phone. They quote you $49.50 per month and get a bill of $72.65.... Me I switched from gas to oil a few years ago ......

  • Tim_41
    Tim_41 Member Posts: 153
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    going oil to gas

    I am switching from oil to gas. Reasons:
    My oil fired boiler is in a 4 foot space which makes servicing very difficult
    I live near a brook which in the last few springs, has flooded but the boiler has not beem touched (yet)
    I have a 8x8 space on the first floor for a mod/con. We have radiant and I am installing CI rads on the outside porch that is now living space..
    I was going to go with a Vitola but it would involve a lot as far as venting it with ss, insulating it etc.
  • tim smith
    tim smith Member Posts: 2,752
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    Another take on oil vs gas

    One way to look at future prices is that most of our oil comes from the unstable middle east which is primarily why the price in unstable also. Natural gas comes from Canada and the US which makes it much less volatile as far as outside influences. I believe that oil prices are going to remain high w/ quite a bit of fluctuation. Natural gas will also creep up at a much less erratic rate, it helps that in alot of Metro areas the suppliers of natural gas are regulated by utility commisions where oil is not. Just my take on it. A big guess although.
  • Dan_49
    Dan_49 Member Posts: 2
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    gas v. oil

    Thanks for raising some issues I had not considered. I am thinking NG. My boiler is about ten years old and has been regularly serviced/maintained. The service provider says it's in very good shape. There is no immediate need to change, but I was wondering whether now is the time, if ever.
  • justme_10
    justme_10 Member Posts: 1
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    SS for Vitola?

    On gas you can use B vent for the Vitola. A properly designed chimney and the right size Vitola should not produce chimney condensation. If low flue temps are a problem you can easily raise the flue temps by approx 90F.
  • Efficiencys with gas

    can be very much higher, cleaner(no yearly cleaning), and no masonry chimney probs to arise. Oil on the other hand, requires replaceable storage tanks(every so many years as per many insurance companies), along with regular yearly maintenance,, your the judge.

    Dave
  • Weezbo
    Weezbo Member Posts: 6,232
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    if you look back on last year,...

    and find a thread that i posted that said, "Remember remember the 5th of November"...Guy Fawkes Day... it might have some light to offer on the subject of oil pricing and the especially hazy forecasting abilities of me in my mind reading hat at the time...*~/:)

    i think that i mentioned buying home heating oil earlier this year...so i took my own advise,..purchased it even earlier...i am unable to actually give you the exact day the price will change every year,..buh consider my take on the subject just this once... re read the post. i have no idea where it is now,..i accidentally erased all my saved threads...
  • Steamhead (in transit)
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    Why not use

    a unit that can burn either oil or gas, just by switching the burner?

    Here's a link to such a unit we just installed:

    http://forums.invision.net/Thread.cfm?CFApp=2&Thread_ID=51063&mc=4

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  • Great option Frank,

    but is that not like buying two cars? and you can only drive one at a time?
    In Canada the insurance companies go by oil tank manufacture dates.
    Can`t keep an OT & burner kicking around in the closet too long if NG is chosen firstly.

    Dave
  • Steamhead (in transit)
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    Not two cars

    more like a flex-fuel setup. Not fully automatic, but better than replacing the entire boiler to switch fuels. And the pro doing the changeover can do a combustion test when finished to make sure all is well. In fact, the pro had better do the test!

    Of course the infrastructure- tank, gas line etc- has to be there too. But if the tank is that old, better to replace it anyway.

    And in this case, the boiler itself is more efficient than an atmospheric gas type, on either fuel.

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  • I stand corrected,

    and thanx for the clarification big-guy,,not something I personally would consider, but is available!
    I see you did an edit, so will I,, atmospheric yes, but do they have the "bugs" out of condensing oil yet?,,(not being a smart alec, just curious).

    Dave
  • chapchap70_2
    chapchap70_2 Member Posts: 147
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    Has anyone on Long Island received a NG bill recently? I have never seen one since I've always had oil where I lived.

    In Nassau County, the price per gallon for heating oil is the price per gallon; No hidden costs. In Suffolk County, there is a 2.5% county tax but I assume there is a similar tax for NG.

    If I understand correctly for Natural Gas, there is a price per therm that does not include the delivery charge. I don't know what other charges there are. Of course when comparing, we have to compare BTU content between fuels.

  • Steamhead (in transit)
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    You'd have to ask Ken Secor

    he has a Monitor FCX condenser in his Vermont home, and as far as I know he loves it. The only other oil condenser I know of is the Peerless Oil Pinnacle.

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