Propane Shortage and Blistering Cold Spike Home Heating Prices

Posted at 9:45 PM, Jan 20, 2014
and last updated 2014-01-21 09:25:35-05

ROCKFORD, Mich. — Another round of blistering cold will have homeowners battling to pay their heating bills, especially those using propane.

Bill Joling is just one of the many people struggling to heat their homes with propane this winter. He says he keeps the temperature down to 62 degrees just trying to save the propane.

Lance Kohley of Kohley’s Superior Water and Propane says propane used to be the affordable option for those in rural areas, but not anymore. “We haven’t experienced this in 20 years.” Kohley said.  “Right now at $3 a gallon, that’s 1200 bucks every month. That’s expensive.”

Kohley says propane prices have recently risen as much as 10 cents a day, and while people are struggling to pay, propane suppliers are struggling to deliver.

Suppliers tell us they’re getting as little as 50 percent of the propane they order.

Kohley says they sudden shortage comes from most people failing to plan for a winter this harsh.

“We’re also shipping a lot of it out of the country,” he said.  “(Producers) have found that they can ship this overseas and make more money overseas then here in America right now.”

And, Kohley says, a solution needs to be found, but there’s no easy fix.

Joling says he’s had to use his rent money to fill his propane tank around Christmas and now has a very hard decision to make. He says he doesn’t think he can afford to fill his propane tank up again. “I think this coming weekend I’ll end up buying some good electric heaters so I can cut everything down,” he said.

For help with heating assistance you can reach out to: