Tuesday, February 25, 2014

High energy costs

    A couple of weeks ago I went through sticker shock when I looked at the propane bill. $3.35 per gallon and normally it's half that. This weeks bill was at $3.30 per gallon. I'm projecting even higher prices next winter. I've seen the monthly average jump the last four years around $40 per month despite using slightly less propane. Now I really want to do something about it more than I've done before.
    There's one project that I hadn't done yet but I've been planning on for the last three years. It's probably the simplest one. I'm going to yank up the subfloor and suspend insulation between the joists starting with the bedroom. If you aren't aware the majority of mobile homes have a wrap underneath that you don't want to cut into. It's supposed to block the cold that comes in. Adding another layer of R-19 won't hurt anything. In fact I'm figuring the first year that project will pay for itself.
    It's going to be quit the job I think. I'll have to remove the carpet and then cut into the floor so I can pry the underlayment up. I'm thinking nylon cordage stretched underneath the stringers every couple of feet will hold up the insulation.
    I should be able to add some R-13 over the kitchen and living room also. I'll only have to reinforce the suspended ceiling a bit to carry the added weight.

    I'm thinking to insulate the entire will cost about $600 and there will be a few incidentals here and there like fasteners and construction adhesive. That should also eliminate the floor creaking if I'm not mistaken and my guess is the monthly average for propane should drop around $40. If I think of it I'll post pictures of the insulating projects.

BTW, the price increase is happening in spite of an increase in drilling. It affects natural gas and propane equally. http://www.alternet.org/environment/frigid-temps-send-natural-gas-prices-skyrocketing-despite-fracking-boom

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