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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Oct Thu 31, 2019 8:48 pm 
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Location: Silsbee, Tx
Mike C. wrote:
I have an older Corona 23k btu kerosene heater that I keep on standby for when the power goes out and I don't feel like going out to start the generator in the middle of the night.

Kerosene from fuel oil dealers is getting hard to find around here-most have switched to red-dyed(non taxed) ultra-low sulfur diesel(DO NOT ATTEMPT TO USE ULS DIESEL IN A PORTABLE HEATER,CARBON MONOXIDE LEVELS ARE TOO HIGH)

WE only have one gas station reasonably close and one Agway,slightly closer,that has a kerosene pump.I just bought 5 gallons at Agway for $4.20/gallon.Tractor supply has it for $39 for five gallons.

One advantage to the Tractor Supply cans is that it doesn't have the red dye in it like it does at the pump(it's dyed in NH,anyway).Some folks will tell you that the dye will gunk up your heater's wick a little quicker than normal.I can't say as I've noticed that,myself.


In this area Diesel with red dye is called MGO (Marine Gas Oil) and is for marine use only.

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http://www.atwaterkentsrus.com


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Oct Thu 31, 2019 8:53 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 20727
Location: Utica, NY 13502 (USA)
:idea:

You might consider walling off the space where your shop is, insulating it, running a new, properly sized power line direct from the breaker panel, and use electric heat. I think that would be a lot cheaper in the long run and much safer as well.

Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Oct Thu 31, 2019 10:02 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 1804
In California you can not buy kerosene at the pump anymore. Only the expensive 5- gallon cans are now sold.

I threw my kerosene heater away and got a propane heater.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 5:53 am 
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Joined: Jan Tue 23, 2007 10:23 pm
Posts: 5388
Location: Chicago IL
Looks like I'm gonna have to switch to propane. I can't find a place selling at the pump anywhere near me and even if I could drive out to a place that does sell it, I'm going to be dependent on my garage heat often enough to make all the trips back and forth very impractical. Much easier to go with propane, that I can get anywhere. No wonder this heater was on sale. Wish I'd done my research. As for diesel, people who own these heaters all advice against it as it ruins the wick and I'm sure the fumes and CO issues are a concern too. I'm kind of surprised these heaters are a consumer item, a small difference in flame size makes all the difference between safe and deadly. I do like it though, too bad kerosene is a pain.

Dave, I was originally using a small electric heater in my work shop area, it is already walled off and I did my best to insulate the space in the summer when I had the air conditioning. The air conditioner could barely make a dent in the heat but it was enough. I'm finding that it's easier to heat this space than it is to cool it. When I shut down my heater I can see the temperature go back down pretty quick. The other concern is the wiring of course, I really would rather not mess with adding a new breaker to the house right now. Id have to be a pretty heavy duty one too as in my workshop I have a professional hot air station that draws quite a bit of juice! In the summer with the AC I had to get up and switch it to fan only every time I wanted to use my air station.

The original master plan was to make a wood burning stove. The garage has a chimney and it looks like it had a stove at one point. I was going to make my stove out of an old air compressor tank, unfortunately I kinda slept on the plan and right now it's halloween night and it's snowing already in Chicago. I'm gonna be looking up wood stoves and see if I can find one for cheap somewhere. Of course I'd be needing firewood but I have a bit of it on hand and the local home depot may sell scrap wood for cheap.

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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 7:02 am 
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Location: 03223
Mark D wrote:
Use diesel fuel instead. You can buy it without paying the road tax, which means it isn't colored red. That's what I've been doing for years. If you live in a state that doesn't sell the non-road tax, then pay the road tax. Still probably cheaper than what those prices above on the thread are.

Mark D.


Mark-are you suggesting the OP use diesel in his heater?If you are,it's not safe to do and will gunk up the heater's wick.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 7:05 am 
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Location: 03223
atwaterkentsrus wrote:

In this area Diesel with red dye is called MGO (Marine Gas Oil) and is for marine use only.


Around here,red-dyed diesel is for anything but an on-road motor vehicle-heating,tractors,generators,etc.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 10:32 am 
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Location: Capon Bridge, WV
+1. Don't let a State Trooper pull your rig over and find off road diesel in the tanks. It'll ruin your day for sure.

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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 12:57 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 20727
Location: Utica, NY 13502 (USA)
Propane is popular in my neck of the woods in areas that are not serviced by natural gas. I'm not sure what size tank is needed to qualify for home delivery.

Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 1:56 pm 
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Joined: Jul Thu 25, 2019 8:53 pm
Posts: 51
You guys should try living in the uk, over here kerosene is 8gbp for four liters, that works out to $11.61 a gallon!
gasoline is just as bad, at the moment it works out to $7.45 a gallon. Luckily my car runs on autogas that's 84 cents a litre, even that works out to $3.78 a gallon.
ever thought of a wood burner.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 3:00 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 20727
Location: Utica, NY 13502 (USA)
What is "autogas"?

I love my wood burner.

Attachment:
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Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 3:21 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 3264
Location: N. Vancouver B.C. Canada
The days of burning used engine oil in my shop stove are long gone. I've also noticed my neighbors were much more tolerant in those days. Just sayin'.
And I do understand it was a bad idea for several reasons which we didn't consider at the time.
best regards,
Sandy


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 3:22 pm 
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Joined: Jun Fri 19, 2009 6:34 pm
Posts: 8942
Location: Long Island NY
Don't know if there are any Speedway (formerly Hess) stations near you but some of them still do sell kerosene. Greenhouse heaters and torpedo heaters for construction sites still use it. Around here it's $3.24 a gallon at the pump. Road diesel fuel (which is not dyed) would be your next best option; it's no riskier than kerosene which is lighter and more volatile. You will get a little more soot and odor but in a drafty garage you'll get away with it. Depending on what additives are in the fuel (diesel usually has anti-gel in it and maybe some preservatives and other compounds), the wick of your heater may need cleaning more often. You might consider blending the expensive packaged kerosene you can get with road diesel to extend it; one or two parts kerosene to 8 parts diesel will raise the combustion temperature enough to make a noticeable improvement in soot, odor, and wick life.

Dyed fuel such as home heating oil or non-taxed diesel should be avoided; in wick-type kerosene heaters or lamps, the wicks do not burn hot enough to combust the dye. After a few tank-fulls of dyed fuel, the wicks become clogged with thick red gunk and and have to be replaced.

Fuel for kerosene burning appliances has been problematic for at least 100 years now. It has to be understood that all petroleum fuels are blends of various hydrocarbons released when oil is "cracked" at a refinery. From the 1850s until World War One, the product known as kerosene was lighter and more volatile than the stuff we get now (when you can find it!) The standards were changed during the war because they needed the more volatile hydrocarbons to make aviation gasoline. Older lamps, stoves, and heaters designed for the original kerosene burn more yellow, with more odor and soot, on today's kerosene. Many of the commercial lamp fuels overcome this by using higher blends of hydrocarbons, but "designer" lamp fuel is usually way too expensive to consider using in heaters.

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Thomas A. Edison


Last edited by Chris108 on Nov Fri 01, 2019 3:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 3:25 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 8628
Location: Litchfield Minnesota USA
Mike C. wrote:
Mark D wrote:
Use diesel fuel instead. You can buy it without paying the road tax, which means it isn't colored red. That's what I've been doing for years. If you live in a state that doesn't sell the non-road tax, then pay the road tax. Still probably cheaper than what those prices above on the thread are.

Mark D.


Mark-are you suggesting the OP use diesel in his heater?If you are,it's not safe to do and will gunk up the heater's wick.


Not according to the people at Cenex, where I get my diesel fuel. They claim it's the same stuff as the dyed diesel, the only difference is you don't pay the tax. Your mileage may differ in your state, especially if you're in CA where everything is out of whack. Or, Cenex is lying to me.

I would suggest that the person (now that it is apparent he is using kerosene for heating) to get a different heater and use propane. Far less cost. At least, around here it is.

Mark D.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 3:32 pm 
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Joined: Jul Thu 25, 2019 8:53 pm
Posts: 51
Autogas is a propane butane mix, has been around for quite a while, my car is 2006 vintage has had gas (not gasoline) fitted from new.
Starts on regular gas and when it warms the preheater switches over automatically , I usually fill up with regular gas every six months or so.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 4:32 pm 
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Joined: May Sun 06, 2007 2:52 am
Posts: 2758
Location: 03223
Mark D wrote:
Mike C. wrote:
Mark D wrote:
Use diesel fuel instead. You can buy it without paying the road tax, which means it isn't colored red. That's what I've been doing for years. If you live in a state that doesn't sell the non-road tax, then pay the road tax. Still probably cheaper than what those prices above on the thread are.

Mark D.


Mark-are you suggesting the OP use diesel in his heater?If you are,it's not safe to do and will gunk up the heater's wick.


Not according to the people at Cenex, where I get my diesel fuel. They claim it's the same stuff as the dyed diesel, the only difference is you don't pay the tax. Your mileage may differ in your state, especially if you're in CA where everything is out of whack. Or, Cenex is lying to me.

I would suggest that the person (now that it is apparent he is using kerosene for heating) to get a different heater and use propane. Far less cost. At least, around here it is.

Mark D.


Evidently,there was some confusion.Yes red-dyed diesel and is the same stuff as for road use except for the dye.

My point was,I thought you were telling the OP to use diesel in his wick-type kerosene heater-you don't do that.There is much info on the internet as to why not.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 6:32 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 8628
Location: Litchfield Minnesota USA
Evidently,there was some confusion.Yes red-dyed diesel and is the same stuff as for road use except for the dye.

My point was,I thought you were telling the OP to use diesel in his wick-type kerosene heater-you don't do that.There is much info on the internet as to why not.
Mark D wrote:
Mike C. wrote:
Mark D wrote:
Use diesel fuel instead. You can buy it without paying the road tax, which means it isn't colored red. That's what I've been doing for years. If you live in a state that doesn't sell the non-road tax, then pay the road tax. Still probably cheaper than what those prices above on the thread are.

Mark D.


Mark-are you suggesting the OP use diesel in his heater?If you are,it's not safe to do and will gunk up the heater's wick.


Not according to the people at Cenex, where I get my diesel fuel. They claim it's the same stuff as the dyed diesel, the only difference is you don't pay the tax. Your mileage may differ in your state, especially if you're in CA where everything is out of whack. Or, Cenex is lying to me.

I would suggest that the person (now that it is apparent he is using kerosene for heating) to get a different heater and use propane. Far less cost. At least, around here it is.

Mark D.


Mike C. wrote:
Evidently,there was some confusion.Yes red-dyed diesel and is the same stuff as for road use except for the dye.

My point was,I thought you were telling the OP to use diesel in his wick-type kerosene heater-you don't do that.There is much info on the internet as to why not.


I was going by the very post where the poster neglected to say what he planned to use it for. I figured it would be for the same use that I use it for - those 'torpedo' style heaters. They don't have wicks. He doesn't want to pay through the nose for kerosene. His best bet would be to trash the wick style heater - (I've never seen one in these parts) and get a propane heater.
My other use for the diesel I use is to start the fire in the burn barrel. Toss in some junk wood in the bottom, toss in a cup or two of diesel, light the propane torch and light it off.

The people at Cenex did tell me that the diesel I was using was nearly identical to kerosene. It sure looks like kerosene. Clear, or nearly clear. It's also the same stuff they use in tractors and combines and such. there might be a cetane or something like that, which might not be a part of kerosene, but that shouldn't hurt a wick.

Mark D.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 6:41 pm 
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Location: alameda,CA
Diesel is a lot more viscous than Kerosene. That and its not nearly as clean and clear as K1 kerosene either. The kerosene we used when I was a kid was probably closer to diesel as it was also a bit more viscous and had a slight yellow tinge to it. I remember the stuff stank to high heaven as well. I would probably not recommend using diesel as a heating fuel.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 01, 2019 6:53 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 8628
Location: Litchfield Minnesota USA
Well, apparently the topic has turned somewhat to the cost of kerosene. Being that it is a) hard to find, and b) it's way out of reality with regard to cost, the OP should dump the kerosene burner and switch to propane or electric, if their cost of electric power isn't stratospheric. Propane is always easy to get and not overly expensive. Electricity is more costly, but other than California is usually very reliable and not much more pricy than propane.

Mark D.


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Sat 02, 2019 12:19 pm 
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Location: Utica, NY 13502 (USA)
Mark D wrote:
Electricity is more costly, but other than California is usually very reliable and not much more pricy than propane.
You're right. Just like other forms of energy, the cost of electricity varies depending on location. In this neck of the woods of upstate NY, hydro-powered generators contribute to cost savings. For Carlos, a vented propane heater might be the better option.

Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Has kerosene always been this expensive?
PostPosted: Nov Sat 02, 2019 1:24 pm 
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Joined: May Sun 06, 2007 2:52 am
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Location: 03223
Mark D wrote:

The people at Cenex did tell me that the diesel I was using was nearly identical to kerosene. It sure looks like kerosene. Clear, or nearly clear. It's also the same stuff they use in tractors and combines and such. there might be a cetane or something like that, which might not be a part of kerosene, but that shouldn't hurt a wick.

Mark D.


Well,we can go back forth about this forever,but I've been burning K-1 kerosene and off-road diesel as heating fuels for many years.I have a through-wall vented heater known as a "Monitor" that I heat my house with.It was designed,and certified,to burn K-1 kerosene.The local dealer that I used to buy kerosene from went out of business.My new dealer only sold off-road diesel.

Therefore,I contacted the gentlemen who does the service on my heater and asked him as to whether my Monitor would safely burn diesel.He said that it would,but the cleaning intervals would become shorter because diesel is a heavier oil than K-1 and will not burn as cleanly.He was right,my heater now gets cleaned every other year,instead of every three or four years.

K-1 and off-road diesel are not the same thing and are not entirely interchangeable for every purpose.Diesel WILL gunk up the wick of a wick-type heater much quicker than kerosene and does not burn clean enough to use in a non-vented kerosene heater.This is a fact.There are videos on Youtube made by a fellow who has been trying different chemicals in diesel fuel in an attempt to make it safe(and clean enough) to use in non-vented, portable heaters.So far,he has had no success-co2 levels produced are not safe.The manufactures of the heaters tell you to never use anything but K-1 in their heaters.Because the two oils LOOK the same,dyed or not,means nothing.

Another thing one has to keep in mind about kerosene vs diesel is that diesel has "lubricity" characteristics/additives for engine use that kerosene does not have,or need,being a heating oil.

I agree,in the OP's situation,a kerosene heater is certainly not an economical choice for him if he need to use it that frequently.


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