How to avoid paying too much for Propane

Regarding Propane - I live in Mountainhome and heat using both propane and firewood. We bought a 500 gallon tank (don't rent!) and top it off every August and January. Since we own the tank, I can call 15 or 20 propane suppliers and the phone call goes like this:

"Hi, I'm calling for a price on propane. I own my 500 gallon tank and it's around 30% full." Then they give me a price. I say "Thanks, I'll call you back."

Rinse, lather, repeat, for each Propane company on my list. Just a few weeks ago, I ordered from Lochlan's for $1.50/gallon. In my experience, you have to price-shop each time you fill the tank, because a different company will be cheapest each time.

Here's a link to the list of propane suppliers that I call.  (If there are any missing companies please let me know and I'd be happy to add them.) It sounds like most people who rent tanks are paying closer to $2.50 - $2.60/gallon lately.

They can only fill your tank up to 80% capacity, never 100%, because propane needs a little space in the tank in order to turn from a liquid into a gas before exiting the tank.

Regarding 'actual' order quantities, I've heard that 300 gallons gets you into the next pricing tier and a quantity discount. That's why I usually wait until I'm down near 30% on my 500 gallon tank to re-order.

Otherwise, the only other thing I can think of is they will adjust the # of gallons delivered to 60-degrees F. As far as I know, they are factoring in the expansion of the propane due to outside temperature in the price.

Also note that there are 2 types of tanks, if you're shopping. One is a DOT tank that requires an inspection every 7 years. It's a thinner metal tank. The nice part about DOT tanks is they can be transported FULL...

I went with a AMSE rated tank, which requires no inspections... it's a heavier-duty, thicker-walled tank.


Disclaimer: The ideas expressed below are the personal thoughts and opinions of Nate Covington and do not necessarily reflect the position of Barrett Township or the Board of Auditors.


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