Propane prices across the country are hitting record-setting highs, and Nebraska and Iowa are feeling the effects. Last week propane could be bought for just under $2.50. Now it’s about $5 per gallon. Many families are struggling to keep up with the spike.
In rural Nebraska, when the cold hits, and the winds strike, staying warm certainly gets tricky. Travis McMeekin told WOWT 6 News Monday that his farmhouse is hard to heat.
“It definitely costs a pretty penny to keep this place heated,” he said.
He has a propane tank that he debated filling up, but thought it would be smarter before the winter months hit, to purchase and electric heat pump. Now, seeing just how expensive the prices are, he is thankful he did.
“To fill this big tank here and get it set up, it would cost about 22 to 25 hundred bucks to get everything going propane wise. It’s the same cost to get an electric heat pump,” he explained.
Take the average customer with a 500 gallon tank, and they're looking at 2,000 dollars to fill up compared to the normal 800.
If you can't go electric though, Whitney Fada found another option. She heats her rural Iowa home using propane purchased on a locked in price. She bought 1,100 gallons for the year at a set dollar thirty five back in May. “I couldn't imagine not doing that, I'd probably have to have my furnace set on 55. It helps keep her family warm and put food on the table.
If she hadn't purchased using the locked in price, she'd be looking at around 1, 500 dollars to fill up. “You can't just come up with thousands of dollars to fill your propane tank every month,” she said.
But thousands of people are forced to do that now, and it’s burning a hole in their pockets.