Since Hurricane Irene I've been without heat and hot water because my oil fired boiler and hot water tank are irrepairable. It is 24 years old and has been flooded 3 times before the hurricane since last October. The main cause of the water is the county road storm drain behind my property which backs up a causes a RIVER coming at the back of my house and into my crawlspace and partial basement. I am currently working on fighting the town and county to fix the problem.
But what I need to know is what the cost comparison is between fuel oil and propane. I just had a plumbing heating contractor say I should go with a propane heat and hot water unit that would fit in my front hall closet on the first floor, eliminating the risk of having anything in the basement. I already have had estimates on a new boiler and they cannot be installed any higher than 3 feet. I had 4 FEET of water in my basement from a rainstorm last Wednesday. So it seems putting anything down there until the problem is fixed is not an option right now.
I am going to need heat in about 6 weeks from now and have no idea what to do. And I don't want to go with electric heat because of the cost to operate. Does any one know if propane is a good way to go and would the propane cost more than oil does to operate in the long term? Thanks!
Not considering the cost of equipment to make the conversion I would contact both the oil supplier and a propane supplier and get their stats on the cost of each per BTU. That's a place to begin. Then contact contractors of each type unit/system and ask them the same thing. THEN get estimates from each for the installation of new equipment required.
I live in central California, propane fired appliances are not allowed in basements. Reason being is propane is heavier than natural gas and therefore it will 'puddle' in a low spot until something bad happens.