### Author Topic: Cost to operate NG grill  (Read 11209 times)

#### MMMdude

• Bristles
• Posts: 322
##### Cost to operate NG grill
« on: March 22, 2013, 06:17:02 PM »
I recently got a Weber 330 natural gas grill.  I am wondering what the cost to operate this is per hour.  It is 38,000 BTU and where I live, natural gas is \$4 per Gigajoule.  Does anyone know the math to calculate this?

I used to have a propane bbq and a tank here is \$15 and would last maybe 12 hours, so operating cost was abit over \$1 per hour.  Curious if the nat gas grill is cheaper or not.

#### Spork

• Walrus Stache
• Posts: 5748
##### Re: Cost to operate NG grill
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2013, 06:48:19 PM »

in general: NG is cheaper than propane.  (I use propane for my primary heat/H20 Heat/cooking.)  That doesn't help with your mathiness, though.  Now, I don't know if that applies to the 20# cylinder.... but definitely for the 250 gal cylinder.

#### Nate R

• Bristles
• Posts: 348
• Age: 35
• Location: Milwaukee, WI (Bay View)
##### Re: Cost to operate NG grill
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2013, 07:07:22 PM »
I recently got a Weber 330 natural gas grill.  I am wondering what the cost to operate this is per hour.  It is 38,000 BTU and where I live, natural gas is \$4 per Gigajoule.  Does anyone know the math to calculate this?

I used to have a propane bbq and a tank here is \$15 and would last maybe 12 hours, so operating cost was abit over \$1 per hour.  Curious if the nat gas grill is cheaper or not.

Gigajoule is close to a therm. It's 947,817 BTU. At FULL flame, if it's 38,000 BTU total, you're looking at over 24 hours for a Gigajoule, or 16 cents/hour.
Propane is about 21,500 BTU/lb for reference, often you get 17 or 15 lbs of propane out of a 20 lb tank, so you're looking at \$1+/hr. So if your figures are correct, the NG grill will be much cheaper to run.

#### Spork

• Walrus Stache
• Posts: 5748
##### Re: Cost to operate NG grill
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2013, 07:31:13 PM »
I recently got a Weber 330 natural gas grill.  I am wondering what the cost to operate this is per hour.  It is 38,000 BTU and where I live, natural gas is \$4 per Gigajoule.  Does anyone know the math to calculate this?

I used to have a propane bbq and a tank here is \$15 and would last maybe 12 hours, so operating cost was abit over \$1 per hour.  Curious if the nat gas grill is cheaper or not.

Gigajoule is close to a therm. It's 947,817 BTU. At FULL flame, if it's 38,000 BTU total, you're looking at over 24 hours for a Gigajoule, or 16 cents/hour.
Propane is about 21,500 BTU/lb for reference, often you get 17 or 15 lbs of propane out of a 20 lb tank, so you're looking at \$1+/hr. So if your figures are correct, the NG grill will be much cheaper to run.

Forgive me for  a totally off-topic interruption.... but how does one get 17 lbs of propane out of a 20lb tank?

#### Nate R

• Bristles
• Posts: 348
• Age: 35
• Location: Milwaukee, WI (Bay View)
##### Re: Cost to operate NG grill
« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2013, 08:54:35 AM »
Many of the companies that have the exchanges don't fill a 20 lb sized tank with 20 lbs. (Blue Rhino only puts 15 lbs in a tank. They TELL you this clearly: http://www.bluerhino.com/BRWEB/Help/FAQ/Tank-Exchange/How-much-propane-does-Blue-Rhino-put-in-its-tanks-.aspx )

Also, you my may not get ALL the propane out before the pressure falls off enough to not work for your appliance.

#### Spork

• Walrus Stache
• Posts: 5748
##### Re: Cost to operate NG grill
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2013, 05:32:45 PM »
Ah.  I've never dealt with propane tank exchanges.  Around here they cost generally about 2x what just taking it to a propane dealer and having it filled.  When I've done that, they have a scale right there with the tare weight preset for the bottle and fill it to 20lbs.

#### Emg03063

• Bristles
• Posts: 458
##### Re: Cost to operate NG grill
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2013, 06:55:00 PM »
For conversions of btus to joules & vice versa (or anything else for that matter), look here:

http://www.digitaldutch.com/unitconverter/energy.htm

38,000 btu ~=.04 gigajoules, which equates to \$0.16/hr by my calculation.  Seems pretty reasonable to me.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2013, 06:57:26 PM by Emg03063 »