What type of heat source do you use in your homes?

United States
February 12, 2008 8:53am CST
We heat with natural gas and it is so expensive. The bill runs us about 200.00 dollars every month. I'm looking for some ideas for a cheaper alternative. Just wondering what every one else is using and the costs involved.
4 people like this
16 responses
@ssh123 (31104)
• India
12 Feb 08
I live in Bangalore city which is in south India. None of the south Indian cities experience the cold of type what we hear in Western countries. In village areas, people who do not have proper shelter, they burn the dried leaves and tree parts in the night (campfire) almost everyday during the winter season. But in cities people do not get wood and most people cannot afford electric heater and in addition there is no need. If one closes the doors and windows it is sufficient. No fresh air is only disadvantage.
• United States
12 Feb 08
Not sure I would like having no cold weather at all. I enjoy the changing seasons. I just dont enjoy paying the bills.
@luvstochat (6914)
• United States
12 Feb 08
I also use natural gas and it is about $200 a month in the winter for use too. I was looking at those flamless heaters the amish make they look kinda neat you plug them into wall and they are suppose to heat an entire room. They really looked cool they were in our newspaper.
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Feb 08
We use a kerosene heater sometimes to help warm up the house,but kerosene is expensive too. I'd love a wood stove someday.
@Lakota12 (42684)
• United States
13 Feb 08
we have total electris and it runs about $300 a month
1 person likes this
• New Zealand
13 Feb 08
When it gets really cold, I use a oil bar heater, don't know how much it costs per month. Otherwise, I usually just put on another layer of clothing... great thing about that is it's just a one time payment, and then you're good :).
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Feb 08
If I could have my dream house, it would have geothermal heat. I would also like to have solar energy to back up the electric systems. I am not sure if it would be cheaper in the long run, but it would be cleaner for the environment.
1 person likes this
@writersedge (22579)
• United States
14 Feb 08
My brother just put a wood furnace into his home. He had a wood stove and it cut the cost of fuel oil some, but it seems foolish for him to chop wood, sell it to other people, and pay someone to bring him fuel oil. Since he has 4 acres of woods and his girlfriend is home during the day, he would rather have wood heat. There are new furnaces now that have heat blocks or something in them that heats up and will still radiate heat for 8 to 10 hours, so you don't have to get up every 2,4, or 6 hours to refill the wood stove. They cost more, but they're worth it. Actually there are lots of wood stove specialty shops now with corn stoves that use corn as fuel, not sure if it's corn stocks, cobs or what, but if a person owned a farm with acres of corn, that would be a good one, I would think. We put new roofs on the house so it cut our fuel oil bill in half. If one or the other of us is going to be home all day, then we start the old fashioned wood stove, but our fire box is small and the wood we cut is pretty punky, so we have 2 and 4 hour refills. We have woods, too, but we work outside the home a lot and many of our trees have carpenter ants that we don't want to bring into our wood frame home. Ours is mostly as a back up for power outages. That's why it's a wood stove, too. My fuel oild furnace is a change a couple things and it can switch to natural gas. So it's a duel furnance. Our cooperative extention is having workshops and giving away free items to help cut heating costs. Our electric company one year did free home inspections and gave us some free items to help cut heating costs and showed us where we were loosing the most heat. My parents used to have a duel oil and wood furnance, it was retro-fitted so it wasn't very efficient. Tended to put a lot of soot in the house. Because we live in the country with forests, wood will always be cheapest for us. Depends on what is available for you. Take care and I hope you do well on your quest to find an answer that works for you.
@writersedge (22579)
• United States
14 Feb 08
My brother just put a wood furnace into his home. He had a wood stove and it cut the cost of fuel oil some, but it seems foolish for him to chop wood, sell it to other people, and pay someone to bring him fuel oil. Since he has 4 acres of woods and his girlfriend is home during the day, he would rather have wood heat. There are new furnaces now that have heat blocks or something in them that heats up and will still radiate heat for 8 to 10 hours, so you don't have to get up every 2,4, or 6 hours to refill the wood stove. They cost more, but they're worth it. Actually there are lots of wood stove specialty shops now with corn stoves that use corn as fuel, not sure if it's corn stocks, cobs or what, but if a person owned a farm with acres of corn, that would be a good one, I would think. We put new roofs on the house so it cut our fuel oil bill in half. If one or the other of us is going to be home all day, then we start the old fashioned wood stove, but our fire box is small and the wood we cut is pretty punky, so we have 2 and 4 hour refills. We have woods, too, but we work outside the home a lot and many of our trees have carpenter ants that we don't want to bring into our wood frame home. Ours is mostly as a back up for power outages. That's why it's a wood stove, too. My fuel oild furnace is a change a couple things and it can switch to natural gas. So it's a duel furnance. Our cooperative extention is having workshops and giving away free items to help cut heating costs. Our electric company one year did free home inspections and gave us some free items to help cut heating costs and showed us where we were loosing the most heat. My parents used to have a duel oil and wood furnance, it was retro-fitted so it wasn't very efficient. Tended to put a lot of soot in the house. Because we live in the country with forests, wood will always be cheapest for us. Depends on what is available for you. Take care and I hope you do well on your quest to find an anwer that works for you.
• United States
12 Feb 08
If I could have my dream house, it would have geothermal heat. I would also like to have solar energy to back up the electric systems. I am not sure if it would be cheaper in the long run, but it would be cleaner for the environment.
@terri0824 (4991)
• United States
12 Feb 08
I heat three rooms with electric space heaters. I also use an electric blanket on my bed. I am very seldom home, so this way of heating beats heating the whole house. My electric bill for last month was $121.00. I would say if you used electric space heaters along with your gas heat, you could save on some monies that way. I was watching on a news story about electric space heaters and that the average cost to run one was about 10 cents an hour.
@brimia (6584)
• United States
12 Feb 08
we use natural gas also but would like to replace the furnace with an electric heat pump...we've heard it's more efficient. we'd also someday like to get solar panels and have everything run off of them. my husband knows someone who got a loan to buy the panels (they're expensive) but his payments are less than what he saves every month in electricity plus it's much better for the environment.
• United States
12 Feb 08
i have steam heat in my apartment, but luckily for me the cost is included in my rent. unluckily for me it was broken the past two days - so it got quite cold in here and i had to use my electric space heater. i'm not too eager to get my electric bill for this month.
• United States
12 Feb 08
My landlords heat runs on water. I have no idea how much it costs him. I do know it's not set on a steady run cycle. So it has to cost him less than running oil. I use a space heater when the heat is low. :)
@Debs_place (10528)
• United States
12 Feb 08
I use oil with baseboard heating and I hate it. It now costs for 2 months to heat my house what it used to cost the whole winter. My last house had a coal stove. It was a surdiac - very clean, we used the stove to cook on-- I bought cast iron pots and used it like a slow cooker. I loved the coal heat - it was very warm. Right now I use lots of blankets, sweatshirts and long underwear.
• Canada
12 Feb 08
Don't go electric...OUr bill this past one was 451 but it was for 2 months and I guess it was for all electricity in the house but I really hate that. It seems so expensive to me. If I had a choice I would go with wood stove. It is the best!
@tyc415 (5706)
• United States
12 Feb 08
Our heat and air conditioning are electric. Our entire house is electric so the cost is outrageous. I wish mine was just 200.00 a month. In the winter time our elect. runs around 225.00 to 250.00 and in the summer time 500.00 or more!!!!! I can't wait to move away from this city.
@ssh123 (31104)
• India
12 Feb 08
I live in Bangalore city which is in south India. None of the south Indian cities experience the cold of type what we hear in Western countries. In village areas, people who do not have proper shelter, they burn the dried leaves and tree parts in the night (campfire) almost everyday during the winter season. But in cities people do not get wood and most people cannot afford electric heater and in addition there is no need. If one closes the doors and windows it is sufficient. No fresh air is only disadvantage.