The following chart and graph help show heating costs for solid fuels in green, and other fluid fuels (including electricity) in blue
- Of the many standards and units for energy, values given here are intended to be clear to non engineers
- Fuel energy values are subjective to ‘batch & condition’, the values given here are a fair representation
- The cost of each fuel changes constantly – prices given here represent those as at February 2011
- An efficient stove is vital ~ here is no point buying cost-effective fuels, to then burn them inefficiently, or waste heat to atmosphere. It’s important to choose the right heating systems, and keep them in tip-top condition.
- Wood fuels is renewable, and has a zero carbon footprint:
“Firewood, sun energy!”
- Heat pumps and similar are also good systems in terms of running cost. However, they can be very expensive to install, so when amortised, it makes them less attractive. This scenario applies to all heating systems, and must be considered if comparative capital costs differ greatly.
If available, and all you want is low-cost-heating, then only ‘natural gas’ compares with solid fuel. Other factors to consider; control of fuel supplies, future fuel prices, emissions, capital costs, stove efficiency, and home comfort.
Midlands & Marches…
“Don’t forget; all this ‘good’ advice is for nothing if you burn wet solid fuels – so burn only when dry, i.e. with moisture contents of less than 20% by volume - moisture meters are very helpful, and inexpensive!”