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fartness
computersoc dot com
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join:2003-03-25
Look Outside
reply to fartness

Re: If I move to the country?

Thanks for the replies so far. Heat is something I didn't even think of. Right now living in the city I have natural gas and it averages $1 per ccf used. Average bill in the winter for gas and electricity is around $180 to $200, and my house is poorly insulated. Family members with similar sized houses and better insulated pay around $120 to $150 in the winter.

Does oil heat smell like oil, or only if oil is spilled? What would heating likely cost? I don't need a real huge house, something 1500 sq ft would be fine. My current house is 1300 and some change and it's plenty big.

Water bill averages $7 a month but some family members in other cities near me pay upwards of $30 a month for similar usage.

Sewer and trash are included in my city taxes. Garbage service in the country wouldn't bother me too much since I don't produce much. I even have permission at one of my jobs to use the dumpsters if I ever need it, but my city will take ANYTHING for free. I know some cities or services charge extra.


sk1939
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Mclean, VA
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I have a friend that lives in Upstate (Ithaca area) and paid close to $4.00/gal for heating oil (275 Gal tank). It lasts them about 4 months, but it depends if the house you are looking at also uses it to heat the water (higher rate of consumption). It doesn't really smell to me since it is radiators rather than forced air. I don't know about rather of consumption for reasons stated earlier, but I do know there is extra cost in money for tank maintenance and such.


pandora
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reply to fartness

said by fartness:

Does oil heat smell like oil, or only if oil is spilled? What would heating likely cost? I don't need a real huge house, something 1500 sq ft would be fine. My current house is 1300 and some change and it's plenty big.

Oil doesn't smell up the entire house. You can smell it outside when your tanks are being fueled, or inside when your oil company is performing an annual cleaning on your furnace.

Oil furnaces need annual cleanings (changing the filter, checking the flue, and burner). Additionally the flue into the chimney is cleaned separately usually on a less than annual basis.

Age of the furnace is a concern, as oil furnaces have a limited lifespan, and are large, clunky and sometimes smelly things to replace.

It isn't uncommon for an oil system to fail now and then, without a maintenance contract, you will have difficulty getting repair when you need it. The most common time for an oil system to fail to heat is during a storm, or in the middle of a very cold night. When it does fail, many of your neighbors will be in the same boat. Without a contract for maintenance and repair, you won't get heat for days and repair will be very expensive.

Without heat, water pipes can freeze. Frozen water pipes, depending on material, may be at risk of sprouting leaks. This includes any hot water baseboards.

I took our my oil furnace and went to heat pump. Personally I'd only use heat pump or propane to heat any future home. I'm done with oil, though YMMV.

The price of oil is unstable, and can be very high. Learning to procure fuel in a rural situation is a learned art. If your home to be has oil tanks underground, do not buy it. Underground oil tanks will eventually leak, in the U.S. tank leaks are considered hazardous waste leaks and environmental laws apply. Expensive to comply with environmental laws.
--
Congress could mess up a one piece jigsaw puzzle.

MaynardKrebs
Heave Steve, for the good of the country
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join:2009-06-17
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reply to fartness

said by fartness:

Thanks for the replies so far. Heat is something I didn't even think of.

Get a large propane cylinder installed. Many propane companies will install the cylinder for free. Use the propane for heating & cooking. If you are building, suggest you use radiant floor heating with a condensing boiler - this will give you the best heating for lowest fuel costs. You can also do snowmelt. Tanks can either be installed above or in-ground »www.paracogas.com/sample-tank-sizes

Also consider fire sprinklers installed as you build. Fire service response can be MANY minutes in rural areas. If you're building in an area with trees very close to the home and are worried about fire reaching the home, create a fire break between the house and the trees - you could also install a 2000 gal. cistern and have sprinkler heads installed on the roof that can spray the entire structure in the event of a forest fire.

Spend a little more money on low/no-maintenance materials - ie. metal roof, brick or Hardie siding for the exterior.

If you build a basement and don't have municipal water to power a no-electricity backup sump pump, consider installing a battery-backed up pump with a solar panel charger (to deal with electrical outages when you're away). Make sure that you install some means of connecting backup electrical power to your panel - either a full-time standby-generator or for a portable genset.