Sitting By The Phone

Every year, in the early part of summer, my phone would ring and the caller was the company from which I buy propane.  If I committed to a certain amount of gallons for the year, say 1000, I could “pre-buy” them at a reduced rate.  The winters can get pretty cold, and the last year we have gone through roughly two tanks worth, or 1000 gallons.  So I usually agreed to buy 1000 gallons at the reduced price.  Every year, that price has increased.  When I built this house nine years ago, a gallon of propane cost a buck.

I didn’t get “the call” this year.  Finally, I called them:

“Good Morning, this Mack Farmer, customer #9426543, and I think I missed your call about “pre-buying” propane this year.”

“No Sir, you didn’t, we haven’t called our customers this year”

“Oh, okay, well can I still reserve my 1000 gallons?”

“Oh, yes Sir.”

“And what is my rate?”

“It’s $3.25 a gallon, Mr. Farmer.”

“Is there someone else I can speak with?”

$3.25 A GALLON.  That’s what milk costs.  If I use 1000 gallons this year, let’s see…..why that’s nearly a goddam fortune!

Three thousand plus dollars to heat this home for around 5 months.  That, my loyal readers, is a losing strategy.

I decided to begin researching alternative means of heating/cooling this home.  More later….

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “Sitting By The Phone

  1. Mack:

    This has nothing whatsoever to do with the price of gas:

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/tobyharnden/100100848/fried-food-and-retail-politics-at-the-iowa-state-fair/

    I didn’t bother with the words, but the photo is SFW unless you are one of those people who sees naked, sweaty bodies doing unspeakable things when you look at an inkblot.

  2. Thats odd, because when I watch porn, all I see are ink blots…

  3. Mack:

    I don’t think you have the right cable provider.

    As for heating and cooling the house, you got lotsa room on that slope out in front going towards the bunkhouse, why not look into solar? Or, maybe you could put in some geothermal wells. Both of those alternatives have high front end cost loading but over the long term they are quiet, non-polluting and highly efficient.

  4. You stole my thunder! I have decided on geothermal, which technically, isn’t geothermal at all, rather, it is called a “ground-source” heat pump. Yes, costly as hell going in, but considering I won’t be buying propane, coupled with the reduced electricity usage, AND, the fact that in warm months, the desuperheater heats the hot water for the entire house without using the element on the water tank…plus the improvement should raise the property’s value, well, I’m sold. I break ground in a month!

  5. Ouch. We’ve got a unit that runs on Natural Gas. I sure as hell hope it costs less than that for next winter.

  6. I’m working on a self-fueled heating system; it runs on methane. I just ate a couple of bowls of some high octane chili that I had simmering all day. I’ll let you know how the tests go–whoops, gotta run!

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