Propane Heating compared to Electric Off-Peak Heating

Are you looking to save on your heating costs this winter? We can help!

Posted by Guest Blogger on October 22, 2013

Are you looking to save on your heating costs this winter? To help you out, WH offers a Dual Fuel Off-Peak heating program for members that use electricity to heat their homes. This program is a win-win for both WH and the participating member. The advantage is that members receive a reduced electric rate of 4.9 cents per kWh (kilowatt hour). In return for the lower rate, WH will turn off the members’ electric heat and a backup source will take over during peak or high demand periods.

You may be wondering, “So will the Dual Fuel Off-Peak heating program really save me money?” The answer is yes. Let’s take a look at the cost of propane heating compared to electric Off-Peak heating.

With WH’s Energy-Saving Dual Fuel program, the electric rate is $4.9 cents per KWh, bringing the cost of electric Off-Peak heating to the equivalent of propane at $1.32 per gallon.

The cost of propane per gallon varies from day to day unlike WH’s electric rate, which is always constant. Right now, the current cost of propane is approximately $1.50 per gallon.

To review, current pricing and price equivalents are:  

Propane =  $1.50 per gallon

Electric = $1.32 per gallon

Not a big difference, but let’s look at it in a different way, using British thermal units. A British thermal unit (BTU) is the amount of energy needed to cool or heat one gallon of water by one degree Fahrenheit.

Let’s now compare fuels at 100 percent efficiencies:

            One gallon of propane = 91,690 BTU’s

One gallon of electric heat = 26.87 Kwh’s 

Let’s do the math to compare propane verses electric heat:

Propane = 100,000,000 BTU’s / 91,690 BTU’s per gallon = 1,090.63 gallons of propane to heat the average home.

1,090.63 x $1.50 = $1,635.94 (the cost to heat an average home for one year using propane)  

Electric = The cost to heat electrically; 1,090.63 gallons x $1.32 = $1,439.63 (the cost to heat an average home for one year with electric Dual Fuel)

To conclude, using electricity ends up being a total annual savings of $196.30 per year, using current pricing!

The above comparisons are true of BTU and costs between the different fuel types, however one needs to remember that the efficiency of their furnace is something less than 100 percent, whereas electric will put out 100 percent or greater depending on the heat source. Also, remember that liquid propane costs vary on a day-to-day basis, but electric rates are much more constant. The higher cost per gallon of propane would return higher annual savings when heating with electricity. If you are not on WH’s Dual Fuel program, I strongly suggest that you look into the program as an option for your annual heating. For more information, call a representative at (763) 477-3000 or visit WH’s Dual Fuel page.

Guest blogger

Read Full Bio