Make more money this season by eliminating unnecessary expenses

Are you looking at another peak season when you’ll be at the mercy of the weather, price spikes, and your storage limitations? If you’re using bulk-tank storage, you may be spending too much on fuel, transportation, and driver overtime—and putting your business at risk every winter. But you can save time and money and operate more safely and consistently all winter long with one easy but powerful change in the way you do business.

Historically, winter has always been a challenge for propane suppliers. From dramatic seasonal price spikes to dangerous roads, emergency call-outs, and the need to increase driver overtime, doing business in winter always results in overhead overload.

Of all those risk factors however, the seemingly immovable elephant in the room is winter price spikes. According to recent data from the US Energy Information Administration, both wholesale and retail propane prices can increase quickly and significantly when inventory is insufficient, or when suppliers lack the capacity to respond quickly to large and/or rapid increases in demand.

A look at the data

To give some perspective on past market fluctuations, let’s look at late-winter data from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) from the last five years:

Fuel Value
Week 1Week 2Week 3Week 4

The EIA projects that this winter, residential propane users will experience higher heating requirements than last year. Overall, 2021 usage is expected to rise up to 41% over last winter, depending on temperatures.

After prices dropped this year due to the demand jolt beginning at the onset of the pandemic in March, the EIA expects natural gas prices to rise in 2021, in part due to strong winter demand. Overall, the EIA predicts that monthly average spot prices could be higher than $3.00/MMBtu throughout 2021. This represents an average of $3.13 for the year, up from a forecasted average of $2.07 for 2020.

Are you prepared for a big increase in price—and demand?

Propane consumers who are the farthest from the major supply sources will generally pay higher prices for delivered propane due to the increased cost of transporting propane by pipeline and rail to bulk distributors, and from bulk distribution points to the consumers. Especially in winter, congestion along rail and water routes can also contribute to price increases for suppliers and consumers.

If you’ve been spending more than you have to every winter simply to run your business, will you be prepared to handle this year’s expected increased demand? If you’re unsure, think about a move to field storage and monitoring.

Eliminate your business risk

The single most powerful thing you can do to eliminate your business risk and reduce winter fuel expenses is to move from bulk-tank to field (also called tertiary) storage. By storing your fuel in the unused capacity of your customers’ field tanks, you’ll not only have much more storage available to you; you’ll also enjoy the advantages of:

  • Lower fuel prices. You can fill tanks during spring, summer, and fall months—at lower off-peak prices.
  • Cost-effective billing models. Charge customers like most water and electrical utilities do: On a metered billing cycle that lets them pay only for the fuel they actually use.
  • Eliminating emergency call-outs. Your customers will never run out during peak season—and neither will you.
  • Reduced fleet overhead. Full field tanks give you the flexibility to optimize delivery routes to avoid budget-busting driver overtime during bad weather.

Cut overhead with a move to field storage

By making this one powerful change to your fuel storage, it’s easy to avoid annual overhead-busters like unexpected outages, seasonal price spikes, driver overtime, and wear-and-tear on your fleet vehicles. With a field storage system in place, you could save up to 75% on overhead.

Get ahead of peak-season overhead now
with field storage and monitoring.

Click here for more information!

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