Local Propane providers

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ugotme6425

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Local Propane providers
« on: January 28, 2010, 12:53:36 PM »
I am not starting this post so I can whine about my heating costs!!! I am sure all of us cringe when we pay our heating bills, but it is one of those expenses we will always have. What I am looking for is peoples' opinions on different companies. I have found sites that you can google that will give the best local prices on gasoline but propane doesn't have such a site. I recently called around and inquired different companies prices but I do not want to get lured into signing up with a company just to have found out that it was a only a good deal till I get stuck with them and their tank!

I currently have Suburban Propane as my provider, their tank was here when I bought my house so I just chose them. I really have no complaints about their service. My tank has never gone empty and they seem to have friendly, knowledgable employees. I am not here to bash them, but I do feel their price is high. I have had them since march09 and have used 1350 gallons for a total price of $5357. That averages out to be $3.97 per gallon. I am thinking about switching companies to someone just as dependable but cheaper.

I would really like to hear other local peoples' opinions of their providers and it would be great to see what others are paying. If this post is inappropriate or in the wrong spot please tell me and I'll move it. If not, please share your experiences. This, being a public forum, won't only help me but everyone who might be paying more than they should be. THANKS EVERYONE.....now go get them bill stubs and lets compare=)

 

Offline Esox

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2010, 01:38:54 PM »
Does the term "bohica" have meaning to you?

If you're paying that much for that high usage, you should become familiar with the term.

It's worth your while to call around.  Make sure you tell them your usage for the past 9 months, I'm sure you'll get a LOT better deal.
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Big Buck

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2010, 01:47:34 PM »
I'm paying $1.79 a gallon in Florida. I use propane for my kitchen stove, fireplace, outdoor grille and swimming pool.

Shop around and get your best price and I wouldn't sign any longterm agreement with any of em. They all want your business so make em earn it.


Offline BR

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2010, 01:48:25 PM »
i pre bought my propane this year from griffith.  i own my own tanks.  paid $1.54 a gallon.  I get 30 cents off a gallon for owning my tanks. i'd say you should be paying right around $2 a gallon.......suburban is and always has been a rip off.  leave them now. it will take a few weeks to get another set of tanks dropped off.  I have used E&V and griffith, and feel both companies are far better than suburban.  Griffith is very easy to deal with now, and I don't foresee me chaning suppliers in the near future at all.

Offline Bondo

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2010, 02:12:26 PM »
Ayuh,...  I always liked the folks at Suburban, Before the merger with Agway...
I still get my propane from them, but I own my tanks,+ only have a dryer,+ stove on 'em,... 
Don't burn much... That puts me at the Highest of the varaible scale of propane pricing...

I'd recommend you call E.V. Energy,...  I use 'em for my oil,+ propane for work during the summer...
Great people,+ their business model was to come up here,+ undercut the thieving that goes on around here...
When I switched from Griffth to EV 3 years ago, the price difference was .50 a gallon...
When Griffth showed no remorse, or offer to lower their pricing, I moved my contract..
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ugotme6425

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2010, 03:00:12 PM »
Thank you so much for your input everyone. I had to google bohica..........that is HILARIOUS!!!!! (and painfully true :o) I called suburban yesterday and asked them why their prices were so much higher than everyone elses and they told me about the "long quality history" of suburban, their convenient 24 hour service, and that they were the only company that doesnt charge a delivery fee. I was very polite as I didn't want to sound so disgruntled, and told them I would be canceling their service at the end of the heating season (my 500 gallon tank is a friggen UNDERGROUND tank :'( so I can't get rid of them till the ground thaws so I can pull in some favors and have it dug up).
They never offered me ANY kind of discount or any sort of reasonable explaination. (keep in mind my account payment has NEVER been  paid a day late.) They only thing she made sure she told me was that there would be a $150 early termination fee because my account was less than three years old, and that any propane left in the tank had a $1 per gallon return charge if they were to pick up the tank partially full.

Getting recommendations from others like you all is a great help. Word of mouth is definitely the best way to do research!!!

Offline cr@ckhe@d

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2010, 03:07:32 PM »
and that any propane left in the tank had a $1 per gallon return charge if they were to pick up the tank partially full.

Let me get this straight:

They want to charge you $1/gal for the privilege of taking back propane you already paid them almost $4/gal for and they will most likely resell to someone else for $4/gal??  What a rip off......


That being said, I know someone who works for suburban, and I seem to recall them saying that if you don't buy the fuel from them, you cannot get 24/7 service coverage on your furnace.  So that is their "justification" for the price being higher.....

Offline Esox

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2010, 04:00:47 PM »
Thank you so much for your input everyone. I had to google bohica..........that is HILARIOUS!!!!! (and painfully true :o) I called suburban yesterday and asked them why their prices were so much higher than everyone elses and they told me about the "long quality history" of suburban, their convenient 24 hour service, and that they were the only company that doesnt charge a delivery fee. I was very polite as I didn't want to sound so disgruntled, and told them I would be canceling their service at the end of the heating season (my 500 gallon tank is a friggen UNDERGROUND tank :'( so I can't get rid of them till the ground thaws so I can pull in some favors and have it dug up).
They never offered me ANY kind of discount or any sort of reasonable explaination. (keep in mind my account payment has NEVER been  paid a day late.) They only thing she made sure she told me was that there would be a $150 early termination fee because my account was less than three years old, and that any propane left in the tank had a $1 per gallon return charge if they were to pick up the tank partially full.

Getting recommendations from others like you all is a great help. Word of mouth is definitely the best way to do research!!!

Hang on one second....you've got an underground tank?

Chances are you own the tank then, it came with the house.  Most UG LP tanks were "sold" to the customer because they were buried.  Tell Suburban that if they cannot provide proof that they "loaned" the tank to that location (and that you want copies of said "loan" agreement, then the tank is yours, you can "cancel " service anytime you want and go with whatever supplier you want.

Unless you've signed a contract to agree to purchase for a complete heating season, then they cannot charge you the 150 dollar fee they're talking about, plus the gas in the tank has already been paid for by you and stick the "pump out fee".

Now, one last thing.  Whatever supplier you decide to go with, make sure they know it's an underground tank and they'll probably want to inspect it.  What you can do is open the top of the dome and find the data plate.  Look for the "manufacture date" of the plate.  If it's more than 12 years old it's ready for a reinspection and new anode bags.  KNOW this before you call around.

PM me if you have any more questions.  MAKE sure Suburban can provide proof of their loaning the tank to that location and get it in writing, there will be a signed lease agreement if it is indeed loaned.  They may own the regulators, but chances are they don't own the tank itself.
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ugotme6425

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2010, 04:36:02 PM »
Several good points in that last post, thanks for the info ESOX but unfortunately for me Suburban has the upper hand . I just called the guy I bought the house from and he said the tank does belong to Suburban. The $150 early termination fee is one of their "fine print" poke in the eyes. In order to get service from them you must sign the "terms of service" paperwork, in the fine print it says that it will be considered a three year service agreement which renews automatically after three years ::). Lastly :P, I do technically own the propane in the tank but when they pick it up they will pump it back into their large tank at the office and I get reimbursed my money MINUS $1 for every gallon they have to take back. Dont worry, that baby will be bone dry when I call them to return it. If I have to leave it sitting by the garage for a few months and run my BBQ grill off of it I will ;D

Offline 57belair

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2010, 07:39:26 PM »
Before switching check with a few places, 1. Is there a charge for having the tank, if you don't use the minimum, 2. Is there a surcharge for delivery?? Surburban did this a few years ago, until the AG caught them, A few years ago I put in a small unvented propane heater in a laundry room, Griffith put in a tank, then tried to charge me a minimum for it, it wasn't in the contract so I didn't pay it, EV will not set a tank unless you're going to use a large amount of propane, Gailey's in LA isn't bad, in the end I stuck with Griffith.

Offline Freak Parade

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2010, 08:34:35 PM »
We have had Griffith since we moved into our house 4 years ago. We are on a budget plan, & no complaints. Great to deal with too.
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Nico

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2010, 09:55:20 PM »
I use kerosene (have two monitor heaters), and propane (for cooking, and hot water). Glider Oil in Carthage consistently has the lowest prices and good service, so I buy from them.

They also offer a cash discount if you pay on delivery.

Offline crazyray

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2010, 12:12:40 AM »
Have you heard of a new heating source alot of us are using now?      It's called wood.       Cuts that heating bill way down.     It isn't that hard to do.    If you keep everything clean it's safe also.      Takes a little work.      It will be good for you.    Really it will.
Try to learn from the past.

Offline Petra

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2010, 12:22:19 AM »
I had Griffith for a while and they were pretty good.  Although, they'd rape you if you didn't call each year to negotiate a rate.
Switched to E&V and they had really good service and a reasonable price without all the stupid negotiating. 
Use natural gas now...

Offline crazyray

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2010, 12:25:19 AM »
All good I guess.... does it grow back after it's all gone and burned?
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Max Volume

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #15 on: January 29, 2010, 06:33:38 AM »
Currently, I have Suburban to deliver my propane into two 100 gallon tanks, and
five weeks ago I paid about $600 for the delivery.

Two days ago, Suburban re-filled my tanks with 139 gallons at $ 3.94 per gallon for a total cost of $560.

Pathetic. Damn near $4 a gallon.

SEL19865

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #16 on: January 29, 2010, 09:55:11 AM »
Hi, I just happened upon this post. I am with Ferrell Gas, and without a doubt, they are one of the highest priced companies in the area. However, did you know that propane per gallon is a negotiable price? Find the lowest price in the area, and call your company and tell them that the average price per gallon is such-and-such. They will try and match that price and will guarantee it for you for a period of time. I did this with Ferrell, and got satisfaction, but they were going to charge me "$35.00" for the privilege of getting a fair rate. I told them that I had been over-paying for propane for a year with them, and that the money they made on the prior delivery ($40 I could have saved going elsewhere) was the equivalent of the fee for the guarantee and they waived the $35.00 fee. All companies have this available, but they will not TELL you this. You have to approach them with it.

Offline 57belair

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #17 on: January 29, 2010, 10:57:54 AM »
How long does it take for say a tree to grow? 25yrs?   Ray wood heat while being nice and cheap will we eventually run out of wood to burn.?

Offline BR

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #18 on: January 29, 2010, 01:53:14 PM »
I have two 100 gallon tanks that are being filled by Ferrell at another location, and they are charging only $1.49 per gallon, plus the delivery charges of 7 and 8 dollars.  this is a locked in price.  My issue I had with E&V was that they never had my bill right because i owned my tanks, had to call every delivery and get it right.  Just got sick of it, as i was on auto pay.  I've never had that issue with Griffith.  Griffith has had the lowest rate or within a nickel, but I trust their service and office people, and they are through my area all the time, not just once a month like E&V.  Overall, E&V is still better than most.

Offline crazyray

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #19 on: January 29, 2010, 05:55:23 PM »
Okay tree hug-in fool you are wrong.    Trees grow back and oil and natural gas doesn't...sorry.   Yes 25 years is maybe about right... thats why you cut one forrest then let it grow and work another.    Did you know where all our major forrests came from?    Or almost all.    The great frackin depression sound like something you heard of?   The good old government had people plant forrests for us to use now.    Same could happen again.   
Try to learn from the past.

Offline 57belair

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #20 on: January 29, 2010, 06:38:43 PM »
No Ray, we are constantly looking for more sources of propane, There's wells being drilled all the time,, Years ago Ft. Drum experimented with a Hybrid poplar tree for heat, trees were planted and they grew, but the area was needed for an asphalt plant so the project was scrapped, you can still some trees off rt 26 just 1/2 mile before the closed gate.

Offline JohnnieT

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #21 on: January 29, 2010, 06:44:27 PM »
Ray is right. Wood is a very renewable source. Name one other source of heat that can be replaced. Not get more of, but replace. I don't use wood yet but plan to next year. I will still have a propane fireplace but that wood heat coming from the "mud room" is going to be soooo nice. Plus I may lose some weight cutting and splitting log loads. Or have a heart attack and die,,,,,
Right now I use strictly propane for heating fuel. As well as cooking and our clothes dryer.
Anyone charging you nearly $4 a gallon for propane is robbing you without a gun. i can recommend Glider for good price and reliable delivery.

Offline JohnnieT

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #22 on: January 29, 2010, 06:45:11 PM »
No Ray, we are constantly looking for more sources of propane, There's wells being drilled all the time,, Years ago Ft. Drum experimented with a Hybrid poplar tree for heat, trees were planted and they grew, but the area was needed for an asphalt plant so the project was scrapped, you can still some trees off rt 26 just 1/2 mile before the closed gate.
But there is only so much to find. When it's gone, it's gone.

Offline crazyray

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #23 on: January 29, 2010, 11:37:59 PM »
Plus when the rest of the folks who freeze because there is no more propane... we can burn their houses for heat.  ;D
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Offline 57belair

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #24 on: January 30, 2010, 08:05:55 PM »
On the way to work I pass numerous fields of hay, I wonder why someone doesn't plant the renewable resource in these fields?? A few miles up the road I pass at least 5000 pallets that someone should buy, and burn for firewood.

Offline crazyray

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #25 on: January 31, 2010, 09:26:07 AM »
Yes the fields of hay could be made into wood pellets.     Or bio fuels.     A man not long ago came up with a way to take the waste from meat plants and produce bio oil.     Another years ago wanted to break old tires back into their basic chemicals.     Cananda was going to build the plants and big oil talked them out of it.    Then there was the so called crooks with ideas about powering your car just with water.     Well come to find out some of those guys did have plans to do just that, only with some added tech.     Hydro cars could have been born back in the 80s.    There are so many more great ideas out there.    Who do you think makes them go away or look dumb to us?     Maybe big oil and propane providers?   :(
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Offline Wiener

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #26 on: January 31, 2010, 11:48:44 AM »
On the way to work I pass numerous fields of hay, I wonder why someone doesn't plant the renewable resource in these fields?? A few miles up the road I pass at least 5000 pallets that someone should buy, and burn for firewood.
I just read about a farmer in St. Lawrence Co that started a grass/pellet business. Bought the machine and started selling them this fall.
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Offline crazyray

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #27 on: January 31, 2010, 12:04:11 PM »
Good for  him.... about time people start thinking about the future by using the past.   
Try to learn from the past.

Offline JohnnieT

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #28 on: January 31, 2010, 02:20:32 PM »
Good for  him.... about time people start thinking about the future by using the past.   

well said

Offline Patriotic1

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Re: Local Propane providers
« Reply #29 on: February 03, 2010, 09:30:01 AM »
Undoubtedly, Suburban Propane is higher than most suppliers and will readily explain the reasons that this is warranted. 
As other posters offered, competitive area suppliers have tentative lower prices on a regular basis.
Several things can help your situation. 
-- You can pull the underground tank and purchase your own tank.  You should find a significant disparity in the local prices for tanks.  One can only wonder why.
-- You can shop the current prices among competitors and pay cash.  If you do this, then do not wait until the tank is too low, or they may try to hit you with an emergency fill charge. 
-- Make sure potential suppliers examine your tank and system ahead of time, so they may agree to fill it.
-- Check nyserda.org to see where our area stands on pricing.
It would seem prudent that a company that has a customer using a significant amount of propane in an underground system would deserve as much discount as one might expect but, unfortunately, some companies may prey upon those feeding them.