What is the difference between Propane and Natural Gas? And which one is right for my home?

Propane and Natural Gas are both fossil fuels, both are largely produced domestically.  Both are also the cleanest burning of all fossil fuels, therefore producing a smaller footprint in carbon emissions.  Propane is compressed into a liquid form and either sold in portable cylinders, or delivered by a service truck to a permanent storage tank (underground or aboveground tank) on one’s property.  Natural Gas remains in its gaseous state and is delivered through a pipeline which is then connected to a home or business.

Propane (Liquid Petroleum Gas, LPG) and Natural Gas (methane) are both used primarily in the same way. 

·      Propane and Natural Gas have different chemical formulas: Propane is C3H8 and Natural Gas is CH4.  

·      Propane has a higher calorific value – energy content than Natural Gas.

·      Propane can be compressed into a liquid and stored or transported in a cylinder or larger vessel.   *New methods for compressing Natural Gas (CNG) are currently being used primarily in fleet vehicles with expansions to come in various usages. 

·      Propane and Natural Gas appliances operate at different pressures.

·      Propane burns at 1967.C or 3573.F slightly hotter than Natural Gas at 1950.C or 3542.F.

·      Propane can easily be processed into Simulated Natural Gas (SNG) and used as a substitute for Natural Gas.  The same is not true in reverse.

Depending on your location Natural Gas may be available to you, if not Propane is currently your only option.  In some cases you may have the option of choosing between the two and cost would be your biggest concern.  Propane rates are measured in price per gallon whereas Natural Gas is measured in price per cubic foot; like all fuel the cost for either will fluctuate. 

When purchasing your appliances purchase them either gas specific, if available, or include in your purchase a conversion kit for your type of application.  We recommend you seek a gas certified professional service/installer to connect any gas appliance.  

For more information visit Florida Propane Gas Association, http://floridapropane.org/  and Florida Natural Gas Association, http://floridagas.org/.    

Gas efficiency can be throughout your home, or business.