Energy cost (1 Viewer)

Oct 29, 2022
26
6
Funster No
92,159
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
Since 2022
Hi, I am about to buy a motorhome to live full time starting from this December (2022).
I have started an excel sheet to assess the cost and was hoping you could help with the energy cost.
The motorhome is a bessacar e435 from 2005 and has 2x gas bottles (not sure the kg yet). Could you please tell me how often do you refill the gas bottles, how often you have to go to a camping for electricity/water...
Not sure yet if the van will have a solar panel. But interested to know your thoughts about its use.

Many thanks
Fan
 
Sep 3, 2012
7,054
23,392
Cheshire
Funster No
22,759
MH
C Class Elddis 175
Exp
8+ years
Best to get some solar if your off grid it will help with charging up your batteries but you won't get that much sun over the winter.
As said look at the Chinese deisel heaters as another source of keeping your van warm as well as gas.
You need to determine what gas bottles you have with the van and what size they are.
If calor you will need to keep changing them over and to make sure you exchange dmpty ones rather than part full it's best to have one bottle closed and run the other until it runs out then exchange ASAP. But its a pain taking bottles out to exchange. If you have refillable then use one etc but fill up when you see an lpg pump. If your static on a site with full timing it's a nuisance to decamp to fill up.si check out the deisel heaters to save on gas.
1 kg of gas equates to approx 2 litres.
 
Mar 30, 2019
2,691
4,931
Cardiff, UK
Funster No
59,476
MH
Coachbuilt
Exp
Since 2016
Worst case, a 6kg propane bottle will last around 4 days if it's around zero degrees outside and your running your gas heating 24 hours a day. A 6kg exchange bottle is around the Ā£25 mark depending on supplier. Calor is usually the most expensive, Flogas is a bit less costly. Conversely, a bottle can last month's during the summer šŸ¤·

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Carol

LIFE MEMBER
Oct 2, 2007
13,854
106,894
North Wales.
Funster No
519
MH
A class
Exp
18 years s Motorhome (33years caravans)
Welcome to motorhome fun FanHope you have a lot going on even though it's winter time I would definitely go down the route of having solar panels fitted they will make so much difference to your comfort, if you are full timing and intend to for a while I would seriously look at getting a LPG conversion the difference in cost of your gas is amazing filling up with LPG will cost you maybe Ā£16 for a large bottle whereas for a bottle of Calor you are looking in the mid Ā£ 30 mark for the same amount.. we have 126 itre tank which lasts the two of us roughly 3 days, don't forget when you are showering it's not like showering at home you need to switch the shower off in between rinses etc else otherwise your water won't last long,.. Baby wipes are your friend.
We can only give you an estimate as as everybody is usage is different, if you are running your fridge and cooking full-time on gas it won't last as long as if you used other methods.
You do need a lot of information if you have not had a motorhome before and the best advice I could give you is to join this forum as a paid up member I think it's Ā£20 for a year that way you can ask as many questions as you like and get as much information as you need otherwise you just get 5 free posts after that you become a read-only member and I genuinely think you will need more than 5 posts to collate all the information you need.
Good luck with your new motorhome and I hope all goes well don't forget to use the forum and ask as many questions as you need if you do decide to become a full member
w2f
 
Feb 25, 2018
5,451
12,011
Essex
Funster No
52,564
MH
Adria 670 SLT
Exp
enough to know i shouldnt touch things i know nothing about ....
126 litres of gas lasts you 3 days ..... That seems like heavy use?
 
Dec 24, 2014
8,479
41,819
Hurstpierpoint. Mid Sussex.
Funster No
34,553
MH
Compass Navigator
Exp
Ever since lighting was by Calor gas.
Could you please tell me how often do you refill the gas bottles, how often you have to go to a camping for electricity/water...
How many people travelling? (e.g. water usage, loo emptying).
In U.K or abroad? (No Calor cylinder exchange possible abroad).
On serviced sites with mains (i.e. 240v) supply or off-grid? (What are your 12v electricity needs? Battery capacity?).

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Last edited:
Apr 19, 2019
2,178
4,437
Funster No
60,021
MH
Carado T339
Exp
5 years
It seems an awful lot. We can use about 4litres per day in winter.
 

mikebeaches

LIFE MEMBER
Feb 22, 2010
5,282
8,158
Bristol
Funster No
10,377
MH
Rapido V68 Van Conversion
Exp
Since 2009
Hi and welcome :welcome3: !!

Much is going to depend on how you plan to full-time, either off-grid, or stay somewhere with an electric hook-up.

As others have mentioned, off-grid it is likely a lot of gas (or diesel) will be consumed during the winter in order to stay comfortable. Very much less so in the summer. And, again as already highlighted, for gas the two options are: to use exchangeable cylinders eg Calor or an alternative brand; or the other alternative is to have a refillable gas tank(s) that you keep topped up with LPG.

There are practical pros and cons to both options. In terms of cost, LPG is usually at least half that of using gas in exhangeable cylinders. But on the other hand, unless the van comes with a gas tank installed, then there is a significant extra lump of money to get one or more fitted. Also, worth mentioning that using the refillable LPG route is invaluable if you want to tour on the continent.

Good luck whatever you decide. (y)
 
OP
OP
FanHope
Oct 29, 2022
26
6
Funster No
92,159
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
Since 2022
How many people travelling? (e.g. water usage, loo emptying).
In U.K or abroad? (No Calor cylinder exchange possible abroad).
On serviced sites with mains (i.e. 240v) supply or off-grid? (What are your 12v electricity needs? Battery capacity?).
1 person in full time
Uk only
Looking at being off grid 4-5 days a weeks and the others 2-3 days on serviced sites (mostly Weekends)
For 12v needs I guess : hair dryer, TV, laptop satellite, fridge, charging phone, hovering.

Thank you so much!

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OP
OP
FanHope
Oct 29, 2022
26
6
Funster No
92,159
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
Since 2022
Hi and welcome :welcome3: !!

Much is going to depend on how you plan to full-time, either off-grid, or stay somewhere with an electric hook-up.

As others have mentioned, off-grid it is likely a lot of gas (or diesel) will be consumed during the winter in order to stay comfortable. Very much less so in the summer. And, again as already highlighted, for gas the two options are: to use exchangeable cylinders eg Calor or an alternative brand; or the other alternative is to have a refillable gas tank(s) that you keep topped up with LPG.

There are practical pros and cons to both options. In terms of cost, LPG is usually at least half that of using gas in exhangeable cylinders. But on the other hand, unless the van comes with a gas tank installed, then there is a significant extra lump of money to get one or more fitted. Also, worth mentioning that using the refillable LPG route is invaluable if you want to tour on the continent.

Good luck whatever you decide. (y)
Thank you so much for your answer.
Can I install a gas tank where the 2 bottle are? Or does it have to be installed somewhere else?
 
OP
OP
FanHope
Oct 29, 2022
26
6
Funster No
92,159
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
Since 2022
How many people travelling? (e.g. water usage, loo emptying).
In U.K or abroad? (No Calor cylinder exchange possible abroad).
On serviced sites with mains (i.e. 240v) supply or off-grid? (What are your 12v electricity needs? Battery capacity?).
1 person in full time
Uk only
Looking at being off grid 4-5 days a weeks and the others 2-3 days on serviced sites (mostly Weekends)
For 12v needs I guess : hair dryer, TV, laptop satellite, fridge, charging phone, hovering.

Thank you so much!
Sorry I think the fridge is actually a 3 way
 
OP
OP
FanHope
Oct 29, 2022
26
6
Funster No
92,159
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
Since 2022

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Dec 24, 2014
8,479
41,819
Hurstpierpoint. Mid Sussex.
Funster No
34,553
MH
Compass Navigator
Exp
Ever since lighting was by Calor gas.
1 person in full time
Uk only
Looking at being off grid 4-5 days a weeks and the others 2-3 days on serviced sites (mostly Weekends)
For 12v needs I guess : hair dryer, TV, laptop satellite, fridge, charging phone, hovering.

Thank you so much!
Hair dryer - Most who've tried them say 12v ones are pretty useless.
Fridge - run on gas when no EHU available.
T.V. and laptop are quite power hungry on 12v.

If you want to run 240v equipment when off-grid you'll really need solar and an inverter. I know little about solar or inverters.
 
OP
OP
FanHope
Oct 29, 2022
26
6
Funster No
92,159
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
Since 2022
Thank you so much for your answer.
Can I install a gas tank where the 2 bottle are? Or does it have to be installed somewhere else?
They say it is LPG gas on the description. So does this mean it will be cheaper to refill than 2x calor
Best to get some solar if your off grid it will help with charging up your batteries but you won't get that much sun over the winter.
As said look at the Chinese deisel heaters as another source of keeping your van warm as well as gas.
You need to determine what gas bottles you have with the van and what size they are.
If calor you will need to keep changing them over and to make sure you exchange dmpty ones rather than part full it's best to have one bottle closed and run the other until it runs out then exchange ASAP. But its a pain taking bottles out to exchange. If you have refillable then use one etc but fill up when you see an lpg pump. If your static on a site with full timing it's a nuisance to decamp to fill up.si check out the deisel heaters to save on gas.
1 kg of gas equates to approx 2 litres.
So the description says it is LPG (see pictures)

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mikebeaches

LIFE MEMBER
Feb 22, 2010
5,282
8,158
Bristol
Funster No
10,377
MH
Rapido V68 Van Conversion
Exp
Since 2009
Thank you so much for your answer.
Can I install a gas tank where the 2 bottle are? Or does it have to be installed somewhere else?
From the screenshot you posted, assuming that is the specification on the van you have in mind, then by the sound of it, it already has a 'Gas-it' refillable system. It's what we use on our van, and the refillable cylinders look - at first sight - very similar to standard Calor propane bottles (but they are definitely NOT the same).

That screenshot indicates it has these: https://www.gasit.co.uk/gas-it-refillable-bottles.html They come in at least a couple of different sizes 6kg and 11kg, and it's normal to have one or two - but for full-time, you really need 2. They fit in the same gas locker where the original Calor exchange bottles would have been, and are installed semi-permanently - there is normally an external filler point on the outside of the van, somewhere close to the gas locker, so the cylinders don't have to be removed to be filled - just drive the van up to an LGP pump at a filling station / or gas supplier.

Edited to add - have just seen your latest post with the pic of the 2 Gas-it refillable bottles! (y) They look to me like 2 x 6kg, which is good to start. But if the locker is big enough and you can accommodate the additional weight, then 2 x 11kg would perhaps be even better - but if it were me, I'd see how you get on with 2 x 6kg first. :giggle:

Oh and yes, the cost to fill them will be a lot less than buying the equivalent amount of gas in Calor exchange bottles. ;)
 
Last edited:
Dec 24, 2014
8,479
41,819
Hurstpierpoint. Mid Sussex.
Funster No
34,553
MH
Compass Navigator
Exp
Ever since lighting was by Calor gas.
They say it is LPG gas on the description. So does this mean it will be cheaper to refill than 2x calor

You may have missed my reply to this in my post #24 in one of your other threads........

That's the problem when you have 3 threads running on the same subject. ;)
 

stevewagner

LIFE MEMBER
May 14, 2013
1,627
3,598
Pevensey Bay
Funster No
26,004
MH
Carthago Compactline
Exp
Yonks
I donā€™t think your motorhome will be winterised so you are going to need the heater on for longer during cold days. Also if your cold water tank isnā€™t insulated it would be at risk of freezing as might the pump. The hot water tank should have a frost valve which will activate at 5 degrees and dump all your water if the pump is on.

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Mar 11, 2013
1,233
1,621
Gillingham
Funster No
25,056
MH
coachbuilt
Exp
since 2005
I think the water tank is 100 ltrs. And I believe it is in the dinette seat behind the drivers seat. The hot water system doesn't have a frost dump valve. Also I think there is only room for two 6 kg bottles.
 

Carol

LIFE MEMBER
Oct 2, 2007
13,854
106,894
North Wales.
Funster No
519
MH
A class
Exp
18 years s Motorhome (33years caravans)
FanHope if those are the photos of the gas in your van it looks like you already have the refillable system as other's have said so the better option.
Depending which part of the Country you live in there may be a Funster living near who could talk you through, it's quite a learning curve starting from scratch.

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OP
OP
FanHope
Oct 29, 2022
26
6
Funster No
92,159
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
Since 2022
FanHope if those are the photos of the gas in your van it looks like you already have the refillable system as other's have said so the better option.
Depending which part of the Country you live in there may be a Funster living near who could talk you through, it's quite a learning curve starting from scratch.
Thank you Carol. I live in Wales. Is there an app or website to find the nearest LPG refill stations?
 
OP
OP
FanHope
Oct 29, 2022
26
6
Funster No
92,159
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
Since 2022
From the screenshot you posted, assuming that is the specification on the van you have in mind, then by the sound of it, it already has a 'Gas-it' refillable system. It's what we use on our van, and the refillable cylinders look - at first sight - very similar to standard Calor propane bottles (but they are definitely NOT the same).

That screenshot indicates it has these: https://www.gasit.co.uk/gas-it-refillable-bottles.html They come in at least a couple of different sizes 6kg and 11kg, and it's normal to have one or two - but for full-time, you really need 2. They fit in the same gas locker where the original Calor exchange bottles would have been, and are installed semi-permanently - there is normally an external filler point on the outside of the van, somewhere close to the gas locker, so the cylinders don't have to be removed to be filled - just drive the van up to an LGP pump at a filling station / or gas supplier.

Edited to add - have just seen your latest post with the pic of the 2 Gas-it refillable bottles! (y) They look to me like 2 x 6kg, which is good to start. But if the locker is big enough and you can accommodate the additional weight, then 2 x 11kg would perhaps be even better - but if it were me, I'd see how you get on with 2 x 6kg first. :giggle:

Oh and yes, the cost to fill them will be a lot less than buying the equivalent amount of gas in Calor exchange bottles. ;)
You are a star thank you so much!
 
OP
OP
FanHope
Oct 29, 2022
26
6
Funster No
92,159
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
Since 2022
You may have missed my reply to this in my post #24 in one of your other threads........

That's the problem when you have 3 threads running on the same subject. ;)
Oh gosh yes my badšŸ™ˆ

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Minxy

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 22, 2007
31,956
63,537
E Yorks
Funster No
149
MH
Carthago Compactline
Exp
Since 1996, had Elddis/Swift/Rapido/Rimor/Chausson MHs. Autocruise/Globecar PVCs/Compactline i-138
Hi and welcome to the fun house! šŸ¤Ŗ

If you haven't already, then go and get the Buyer's Guide from the resources section (free for subscribers) and have a good read as it will explain a load of stuff which you won't even have known to ask about.

If you put a link to the MH you're interested in we can have a shuftie and see what it has/hasn't got and advise accordingly.

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