Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • molokoid
    • By molokoid 29th Jun 08, 5:46 PM
    • 22Posts
    • 14Thanks
    molokoid
    Bulk LPG - Cheapest suppliers / supply route?
    • #1
    • 29th Jun 08, 5:46 PM
    Bulk LPG - Cheapest suppliers / supply route? 29th Jun 08 at 5:46 PM
    Hi all,

    Moved into a house in Jan that has a bulk LPG tank, which was previously supplied (and the tank is owned by) Calor. The contract they were really keen for me to sign was quite a restrictive lock in one and after speaking and a bit of negotiating they dropped the standing charge and discounted the pence per litre by 12%. This only made me sceptical that they had a lot of fat in the price anyway and there seems to be limited information available on the net about bulk lpg supply (lots of websites that will find you the cheapest supply for a fee!). Seems to be crying out for a MSE article if there are enough bulk lpg owners out there.

    Anyway, i read that there is some sort of regulation coming into the market which allows me to choose the supplier i wish and in turn they buy the tank off the previous owners. This seems to be a more market competitive way of doing it, but i can't find out when this is due to happen.

    Are there any bulk lpg owners out there that can give me some advice?

    TIA
Page 149
    • frozen_wastes
    • By frozen_wastes 20th Nov 17, 1:00 PM
    • 46 Posts
    • 10 Thanks
    frozen_wastes
    I had a bad experience with J Gas. I signed up with them November 2016. They offered 28ppl with 10.9ppd standing charge for the underground tank. Price increase was limited to 3.5pence per litre per year, and 700 litres of free gas was included. It was all very good, even without the free gas.

    At the time of signing my contract, my tank was 75% full, and it was only October this year (11 months after signing the supply agreement) that I placed an order. After delivery I received an invoice charging 73.4ppl. I queried this and was initially told that JGas cancelled my supply agreement in October because I hadn't ordered any gas (they hadn't told me of this)

    Then the original salesman phoned me up telling me that my price was based on an annual consumption of 2000 litres per year. So he would get back to me.

    The end of the query resulted in an invoice for 28ppl. The 700 litres free gas would not be honoured, and all future orders would be priced at 45ppl. They said that I was free to go with any other supplier. I accepted the 28ppl invoice on the phone,.

    I checked terms and conditions and I was not in breach of contract in any way, but sure enough the terms of my supply contract say that if JGas are in breach of contract then I'm free to go with another supplier. It's not much of a comeback, and it essentially means that they can't be held to the supply agreement. The most recent fillup in any case will see through the minimum 2 year supply agreement, but I'm wondering if I can still hold them to the 700 litres free gas in a small claims court.

    I wrote to my MP about this, as it seems like very sharp practice. I've had no reply after 2 weeks, but I suggested to him that buying LPG should not bind you to a supplier for 2 years. The customer is subject to a binding agreement unlike buying any other fuel for either your house or your car, and there's no opportunity for purchase outside of a 2 year agreement. All this means that the customer has no opportunity to take advantage of any price drops in the market for 2 years, but often there's no incentive to change supplier when the supplier breaches the terms of the supply agreement when their wholesale prices increase.

    I suggested to my MP that tank ownership should transfer automatically and seamlessly to the next supplier on the basis that all tank owners are subject to the same safety regulations. So the condition of the tank should not be a question when ownership is transfered unless the tank was already condemmed by the existing owner.
    Last edited by frozen_wastes; 20-11-2017 at 1:10 PM. Reason: Clearer sentences
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 20th Nov 17, 1:50 PM
    • 15,702 Posts
    • 14,018 Thanks
    AdrianC
    I wrote to my MP about this, as it seems like very sharp practice. No reply, but I suggested to him that buying LPG should not bind you to a supplier for 2 years as it's unlike buying any other fuel for either your house or your car.
    Originally posted by frozen_wastes
    You own your car's fuel tank. You own your domestic oil tank. You can fill them with whatever you choose. If your car's fuel tank was leased from BP, then BP would be within their rights to say "BP fuel only".

    I suggested to my MP that tank ownership should transfer automatically and seamlessly to the next supplier on the basis that all tank owners are subject to the same safety regulations. So the condition of the tank should not be a question when ownership is transfered unless the tank was already condemmed by the existing owner.
    Let's say that Flogas own your tank. It gets to 50% full, and Calor top it up. Do they own it now? It gets to 55%, and Flo top it up. Do they own it now? It gets to 60% and Countrywide top it. Do they own it now?

    If you're removing the contract, you really need to de-link ownership and filling. Which means you own it. Well, you can do that now - but it means you are responsible for the safety checks, pressure testing etc.
    • frozen_wastes
    • By frozen_wastes 20th Nov 17, 2:27 PM
    • 46 Posts
    • 10 Thanks
    frozen_wastes
    Let's say that Flogas own your tank. It gets to 50% full, and Calor top it up. Do they own it now? It gets to 55%, and Flo top it up. Do they own it now? It gets to 60% and Countrywide top it. Do they own it now?
    Originally posted by AdrianC

    That's the thought that was going through my mind. In a world of old fashioned paperwork, that method of ownership transfer would be far too cumbersome and impractical. But we have no longer need to live in an old fashioned world of paperwork. There's no reason why ownership couldn't be be transferred digitally. In which case, this style of ownership transfer wouldn't be any hassle.


    If you're removing the contract, you really need to de-link ownership and filling. Which means you own it. Well, you can do that now - but it means you are responsible for the safety checks, pressure testing etc.
    Originally posted by AdrianC

    As you say there's nothing to stop anyone owning their own LPG tank. But from what I've read, they'll find that no-one is willing to top it up.



    My overall desire is to see better competition between LPG suppliers. How that's achieved is a matter of debate, my thought's above are just one possibility. It doesn't look like 2 year supply agreements offer any price security as I've just found out. So I'm thinking: if we can't have price security, then there should be mechanisms for better market competition instead.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 20th Nov 17, 2:31 PM
    • 15,702 Posts
    • 14,018 Thanks
    AdrianC
    That's the thought that was going through my mind. In a world of old fashioned paperwork, that method of ownership transfer would be far too cumbersome and impractical. But we have no longer need to live in an old fashioned world of paperwork. There's no reason why ownership couldn't be be transferred digitally. In which case, this style of ownership transfer wouldn't be any hassle.
    Originally posted by frozen_wastes
    But the point is more one of whether the supplier who have the bulk of the gas in the tank own it, or simply the johnny-come-lately who top it up a bit.

    As you say there's nothing to stop anyone owning their own LPG tank. But from what I've read, they'll find that no-one is willing to top it up.
    If ownership becomes more widespread, then there would be a much greater willingness, simply because otherwise they would sell little gas. Obviously, you would need to prove the tank met all the safety requirements at the point of fill...
    • mcmullank
    • By mcmullank 20th Nov 17, 3:29 PM
    • 84 Posts
    • 72 Thanks
    mcmullank
    The tank ownership issue is just a mechanism that the LPG companies use to make moving more difficult. This should have been addressed by the CC when they carried our their market investigation. The LPG market is now the only energy market where the product and infrastructure are bundled.

    The easy solution to this would be for the LPG companies to sell the tanks to a third party that then leases these to the customers. It would be the responsibility of the leasing company to carry out the inspections and ensure compliance with the siting rules (which are set by the LPG companies currently using their own trade body as the front). If the siting of the tanks was such an issue then existing owners should be forced to ensure compliance at all times and not just when you switch tanks.

    At the end of the day, off-grid households do not have sufficient numbers to force these issue onto the political agenda.
    • The Hornet
    • By The Hornet 21st Nov 17, 2:07 PM
    • 73 Posts
    • 65 Thanks
    The Hornet
    A close look at LGPSave/Flogas T&C's
    As my contract is coming to an end I obtained a very good quote from LPGSave of 31.5p/l fixed for one year and a "Cap" of 5ppl for year 2. Sounds good. However a close look at their T&C's reveals something interesting. I quote:

    8.2 Where the cost of supplying the LPG increases due to:

    8.2.1 any underlying increase in the cost of LPG as evidenced by reference to the relevant Platts LPG price index for North West Europe (taking into account any relevant exchange rate issues);

    8.2.2 any increase in our direct transportation costs; and/or

    8.2.3 any increase (not related to clause 8.2.1) in the cost to us of purchasing LPG from our suppliers, we retain the right to pass on such increases to you by increasing the price of our LPG but subject .

    We may increase (in a single step or a series of steps) the price of LPG for the reasons listed at clauses 8.2.2 and 8.2.3 by no more than five pence per litre in any twelve month period.

    Please note that no such limit shall apply to any increase which reflects an increase in the underlying cost of LPG (as set out at clause 8.2.1).

    For the avoidance of doubt, the maximum increase in the price of LPG (the “Upper Annual Limit”) in a given period is:

    (a) the cost increase over the corresponding period due to clause 8.2.1; plus

    (b) the cost increase over the corresponding period due to clauses 8.2.2 and/or 8.2.3 together, where (a) is an unlimited increase and (b) shall be limited to a maximum of five pence per litre in any 12 month period.
    My highlighting. So the 5ppl limit is really nothing of the sort, it's actually a cap of 5ppl plus they can pass on ANY increases in wholesale prices.

    I've now renegotiated a new contract with my existing supplier, Countrywide at a slightly higher initial price (34ppl) but with a guaranteed, total cap of 5ppl for year 2 with NO getout clauses and a substantial sweetener of free gas.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 21st Nov 17, 2:13 PM
    • 15,702 Posts
    • 14,018 Thanks
    AdrianC
    The easy solution to this would be for the LPG companies to sell the tanks to a third party that then leases these to the customers.
    Originally posted by mcmullank
    Is it just me who suspects that any such third-party leasing company may not be utterly independent of the gas suppliers...?
    • mcmullank
    • By mcmullank 21st Nov 17, 2:23 PM
    • 84 Posts
    • 72 Thanks
    mcmullank
    Is it just me who suspects that any such third-party leasing company may not be utterly independent of the gas suppliers...?
    Originally posted by AdrianC
    It isn't that difficult to put a mechanism in place that prevents an LPG distributor from owning any part of the tank company. Absent any commonality of ownership there would be no reason for the tank rental company and LPG distributors to work in concert.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 21st Nov 17, 2:28 PM
    • 15,702 Posts
    • 14,018 Thanks
    AdrianC
    One thing's for sure, it would almost certainly increase the tank rental cost massively.
    • mcmullank
    • By mcmullank 21st Nov 17, 2:42 PM
    • 84 Posts
    • 72 Thanks
    mcmullank
    One thing's for sure, it would almost certainly increase the tank rental cost massively.
    Originally posted by AdrianC
    Why would it, there is one of the following happening at the moment:
    1. Tank rental is profitable in it's own right or ;
    2. Cross-subsidisation or ;
    3. The LPG suppliers are Santa Claus

    Since 3 is unlikely to be the case this leaves 1 or 2 as the most likely. If it is 1 then that profit will still exist for the independent rental company (or companies if you want to have competition). If it is a single company then they should have regulated pricing.
    If there is cross-subsidisation then increasing rental prices would, if the market was functional, lead to reduced ppl costs of LPG.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 21st Nov 17, 2:52 PM
    • 15,702 Posts
    • 14,018 Thanks
    AdrianC
    You forget the increase in costs.
    • bobmac62
    • By bobmac62 21st Nov 17, 4:20 PM
    • 36 Posts
    • 48 Thanks
    bobmac62
    Rather belatedly, the monthly pricing from Woldlink for November is advised at 31.95ppl +5% VAT, an increase of 1ppl on October pricing.
    • philtrick123
    • By philtrick123 28th Nov 17, 12:37 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    philtrick123
    New Home Owner- Flogas to Calor then back again
    FYI-
    I just moved into a house that has a bulk LPG for central heating and hob. Discovering the joys of LPG.
    The previous owner used Flogas-
    The 1st best offer they made me was 32p+VAT Yr1, Max 5p extra Yr2.
    I rang around all the other suppliers and found Calor to be the lowest. So I signed with them.
    Once Flogas received the transfer docs from Calor, they made me an 11th hour email offer of-
    30p+VAT Yr1, Max 5p extra Yr2 + £150 Credit.
    That worked out ~£100 cheaper over 2 years compared to Calor. So I've signed with Flogas


    On the same day Flogas made me the offer, I received a template letter to the previous owner saying sorry but we need to increase the LPG to £48ppl!


    LPG pricing is like the wild west!


    Just trying to find out how much it costs to install a tank underground- any ideas anyone? Flogas are meant to be surveying soon.
    • Bethmiss
    • By Bethmiss 28th Nov 17, 3:51 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    Bethmiss
    Afternoon All,

    Please can somebody advise on present price for bulk LPG? We had been with same supplier (through various incarnations) for over 30 years. We were given a tank by friends moving house who finally got fed up trying to get Calor to take away their tank. When my parents retired from farming, the tank moved with them and supplied LPG for cooking and heating. The drivers did their checks when delivering gas, and there was never any problem. Then the time came when the tank needed thorough servicing and various things done for regulations. The bother and cost involved were such that my parents opted to rent a tank from the LPG supplier (North Eastern Farmers at that time). The old gas tank became the bulk diesel tank for the car until diesel prices made it unrealistic - it was then bought by one of our LPG tanker drivers!
    North Eastern Farmers became MacGas, which became BP, which became Flogas disguised as MacGas, which became Flogas. We never had any problems with NEF or MacGas. BP was first bunch to start increasing prices mid-contract - I'm not even sure we had contracts with NEF and MacGas.

    We had problems on and off with Flogas, and their customer service was even worse than BPs! Last November (2016) we switched to JGas. 28ppl fixed for a year; £48 per annum tank rental; and £700 worth of gas. The move from Flogas didn't go very well as their emails to JGas were being mis-directed into a Spam folder.

    I've been working on assumption that our year is up at end of November 2017, and was planning to order gas tomorrow. Yesterday we received a letter from JGas, dated 23rd Nov, advising that "fixed price period is due to expire this month, since the end of March 2016 the world trade price of Oil & LPG has risen. Other factors, specifically the £/$ exchange rate have also had a major impact on all commodities. In accordance with your agreement, unfortunately your LPG price will increase by 3.00ppl effective as of 1st December 2017."

    Hence the reason I'm wondering what other people are paying for their LPG! Thank you.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 28th Nov 17, 3:55 PM
    • 15,702 Posts
    • 14,018 Thanks
    AdrianC
    Last November (2016) we switched to JGas. 28ppl fixed for a year; £48 per annum tank rental; and £700 worth of gas. The move from Flogas didn't go very well as their emails to JGas were being mis-directed into a Spam folder.

    I've been working on assumption that our year is up at end of November 2017, and was planning to order gas tomorrow. Yesterday we received a letter from JGas, dated 23rd Nov, advising that "fixed price period is due to expire this month, since the end of March 2016 the world trade price of Oil & LPG has risen. Other factors, specifically the £/$ exchange rate have also had a major impact on all commodities. In accordance with your agreement, unfortunately your LPG price will increase by 3.00ppl effective as of 1st December 2017."
    Originally posted by Bethmiss
    I suspect that, while your fixed price period has expired, your contract has not - two-year contracts are standard.

    31p/litre still isn't bad - far from it.

    I dread to think how much gas you're getting through to get such a good price AND £700 of free gas...
    • Bethmiss
    • By Bethmiss 4th Dec 17, 10:53 AM
    • 8 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    Bethmiss
    Humble apologies for "senior moment" with my mistake in saying we got £700 worth of free gas - it should have said 700 litres! That works out at pretty much the same as all the other suppliers from whom I got quotes, except that theirs was cash discount offer.

    Sorry too, for delay in getting back to this.

    Yes, our fixed price period has ended. Yes, I know we're still in the middle of a two year contract. What I don't know is the current price of LPG.

    Our contract states "Year 2 any increase capped to a max 3ppl". So, we've been informed of a 3ppl increase effective from 1st December. I'm wondering how many other increases there will be between now and November 2018?!
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 4th Dec 17, 11:02 AM
    • 15,702 Posts
    • 14,018 Thanks
    AdrianC
    Our contract states "Year 2 any increase capped to a max 3ppl". So, we've been informed of a 3ppl increase effective from 1st December. I'm wondering how many other increases there will be between now and November 2018?!
    Originally posted by Bethmiss
    None, under that contract.
    • Bethmiss
    • By Bethmiss 4th Dec 17, 11:15 AM
    • 8 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    Bethmiss
    That's how I read it first, but then realised it says "Year 2 any increase" etc. I think Flogas had something similar to get round increasing price more often. Time will tell. Thank you.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 4th Dec 17, 11:18 AM
    • 15,702 Posts
    • 14,018 Thanks
    AdrianC
    "If there's an increase, then..."
    • The Hornet
    • By The Hornet 5th Dec 17, 10:42 AM
    • 73 Posts
    • 65 Thanks
    The Hornet
    That's how I read it first, but then realised it says "Year 2 any increase" etc. I think Flogas had something similar to get round increasing price more often. Time will tell. Thank you.
    Originally posted by Bethmiss
    Yes, Flogas have a neat getout clause (see my earlier post 2966 above).

    Whist they state there is a maximum increase of 3-5ppl in year 2, that excludes any increase in the wholesale price of LPG so you can get hit for the cap limit plus whatever they see as appropriate.
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

1,662Posts Today

7,782Users online

Martin's Twitter
  • RT @SF_England: @MartinSLewis Thanks Martin, just so everyone is aware- check your payslips between when you graduated and the following Ap?

  • Sorry to bubble burst. But each day a lot of people tweet me this. I think it doesn't show any other votes until t? https://t.co/uRny62NRc1

  • Today's Twitter poll: I want to find out are people generally happy. So how happy are you today? PS I did the same? https://t.co/3Gw9ylu2H2

  • Follow Martin