2. Space Heat. How do you Heat your Home?

City of Homer Alaska Official Website

a. Fuel Oil:

Converting a Fuel Oil Boiler to Natural Gas: If you have a newer oil fired boiler, you may be able to convert it to natural gas by replacing the burner. However, depending on the efficiency and age of your current unit, you might want to consider purchasing a more efficient natural gas boiler anyway. If you have a oil fired boiler that can be converted to natural gas, check with the manufacturer of your boiler about warranty coverage if converted.

Fuel Oil Space Heater: These cannot be converted to natural gas. You will have to purchase a new natural gas space heater. Most homes require two space heaters to heat the space effectively. Once installed, you may or may not be able to vent the heater out of the same hole your fuel oil stove was vented out of.

b. Propane:

Converting a Propane Boiler: In some instances converting a propane boiler to natural gas is as simple as changing out a value, but not always. Some propane boilers cannot be converted, and if you have an older boiler the most cost effective option may be to buy a new high efficiency natural gas boiler.

Propane Space Heater: Some propane space heaters cannot be converted to natural gas. Rinnai is a common brand in Homer that can be converted easily. Venting and plumbing for your existing propane space heaters will not necessarily be sufficient for natural gas.

c. Electric

Electric Base Boards: A concern with electric heating systems is how your heat is delivered. If you heat your house with electric baseboards, for example, you will need to invest not only in a new natural gas boiler but also a new heating distribution system to get the same quality of heat distribution, which can be quite costly.

d. Wood

Wood Stove/Boiler: The cost savings associated with converting to natural gas for space heat when you heat with wood depends on how you get your wood. If you are paying for wood by the cord at today’s prices, natural gas is cheaper. Even if your primary heat source is wood, you could experience significant savings by hooking up other appliances to natural gas (dryer, range).