Ohio residents get wood pellet delivery option

By Anna Austin
Homeowners in Cincinnati, Columbus and Dayton, Ohio, who use wood pellet stoves and furnaces to heat their homes, now have the option of having the fuel delivered directly to their residences.

Wood pellet provider PelletSales.com said the new option was offered in response to a record increase of pellet stove and furnace installations and an increased demand for residential delivery.

Jennifer Nickaulas, PelletSales.com marketing coordinator, said the company expects to see a greater interest in wood pellets now that they offer home delivery to more areas. "We're constantly expanding our service areas based on demand, and we're seeing that people overwhelmingly value both their time and money, preferring to have wood pellets delivered," she said. "It makes sense, really, because someone who heats their home with natural gas for example, doesn't have to haul the fuel in one tank at a time from the store, so why should someone heating with biomass have to do so?"

The company recommends purchasing wood pellets in early spring because oil prices are forecast to rise again, and it is typically the most cost-effective time of year to purchase pellets. As of April 14, crude oil was selling for $50 per barrel, up from less than $35 per barrel in February.

Along with the option of having pellets delivered, customers can also choose to lower their delivery costs by using a community pooling registry on the company Web site. The registry helps customers find others in their area who are also looking for pellet fuel with whom they can share the cost of transporting the pellets. A truck can carry approximately 24 tons of fuel. Nickaulas said the amount of pellets a homeowner burns in a typical season varies based on home size and temperature preference, but most purchase three to five tons a season.

Pellet pricing varies by zip code and time of year. For current pricing, visit the Web site at www.pelletsales.com.