After electricity and gas, the prices of solid fuels are also rising significantly. LPG increases in price at least

After electricity and gas, the prices of solid fuels are also rising significantly. LPG increases in price at least
After electricity and gas, the prices of solid fuels are also rising significantly. LPG increases in price at least

Due to the record prices of natural gas, people are increasingly looking for the possibility of heating with solid fuels. However, their prices are also rising significantly – for firewood, they have more than doubled year-on-year. On the other hand, the price of LPG, or pure propane, remains relatively stable, thus becoming an economically advantageous fuel for many households and companies. Unlike natural gas, its supply is not dependent on Russia.

Due to the high prices of natural gas, Czech households are beginning to switch to solid fuels to a large extent. However, due to the huge interest in firewood and wood pellets, prices are rising significantly in this segment as well. According to data from the Czech Statistical Office, the price of firewood rose by 111% year-on-year in the second quarter. A look at the suppliers’ price lists shows that another ecological fuel – wood pellets – has not escaped the significant price increase. They also doubled in price year-on-year.

There is also great interest in solid fuel stoves and boilers. “The growth in the number of installations and other requests is enormous, it has increased by about three times compared to previous years. Of course, the increase in the price of pellets does not help this, but given inflation and the even greater increase in gas and electricity prices, it is explainable. Coal is also coming back into play, which is another household fuel alongside wood and pellets,” describes the market situation Vladimír Stupavský from the Česká Peleta Cluster, which brings together producers of ecological fuels, while mentioning another of the effects that the rising prices of electricity and natural gas bring: households are starting to return to coal.

LPG prices are more stable

On the contrary, LPG prices remain relatively stable. The price of propane in bottles or tanks has also risen year-on-year, but not nearly as much as natural gas or firewood. “While the price of natural gas has increased several times year-on-year and the current spot price on the stock exchange is even ten times last year’s values, we have seen a price increase of about 40 percent in the first half of the year for heating propane in tanks compared to the same period last year.” says Jiří Karlík, CEO of Primagas. However, he assumes that the price of propane will be significantly lower when compared throughout the year. The price of LPG rose especially at the end of last year, together with inflation and the prices of other commodities. It has been stable since then.

Greater stability of LPG prices is due to the production process and different distribution flows. “In contrast to natural gas, the production and distribution of LPG is far less dependent on various geopolitical events, and there is not as much risk of supply shortages. In the case of LPG, in short, we are not primarily dependent on Russia,”points out Jiří Karlík and adds that a large part of LPG is produced during oil refining directly in Europe. The domestic demand is largely covered by the refinery in Kralupy nad Vltavou connected to the IKL pipeline, through which oil flows from Trieste, Italy.

According to Jiří Karlík, thanks to the global background of the SHV Energy international group, his company has unique access to many European terminals. “Regardless of the local situation in the region, for example during a refinery shutdown, we can diversify our purchase and ensure maximum reliability of LPG or propane supplies and their price stability,” clarifies the director of Primagas.

LPG is a good substitute for natural gas and wood in households

Thanks to price stability, LPG is now becoming one of the most economically advantageous fuels, which is also suitable for both family homes and smaller (recreational) buildings, as well as for smaller companies. The price of one kilowatt-hour of energy when using pure propane supplied to the storage tank is currently around three crowns including VAT. At the same time, it is advantageous to buy LPG in advance, while paying once for the entire quantity of gas delivered. But there is also the option of classic advance payments and annual billing.

When switching to the more price-stable LPG, it is possible to continue with the existing gas appliances used in the house, such as a condensing boiler, instantaneous water heater or gas stove. The only modification of the appliances consists in replacing the burner nozzles. It is usually necessary to adjust the flame intensity as well. In any case, these are simple adjustments that a service technician can make in no time.

How to buy a gas tank?

Nevertheless, the installation of a propane storage tank requires a significant investment, including the project, related improvements to the land or transportation, and connecting the storage tank to the boiler. However, it is not necessary to purchase the magazine itself. LPG suppliers make it possible to rent it for a nominal price – usually units of crowns per day. All servicing and revisions are thus the responsibility of the LPG supplier.

Older family homes often use tanks for 4,850 liters or 2.1 tons of propane. This corresponds to 27 megawatt-hours of energy, which should cover the annual heating and water heating needs of a typical household.
“However, even smaller tanks for 2,700 liters or 1,200 kilograms of propane are increasingly being used. Many houses today have better thermal insulation, and people also often warm themselves with fireplaces or stoves.” describes Jiří Karlík.

The article is in Czech

Tags: electricity gas prices solid fuels rising significantly LPG increases price

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