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Jeff_a_Caldwell
Senior Contributor

Buying diesel

Was just skimming this bit of information from the good folks at K-State (they're all great from K-State)...interesting to see how much fluctuation there is between the relative prices of diesel and crude oil, at least inthe example they use here from southwest Kansas. 

 

Just out of curiosity, how much attention do you pay to information like this when you're buying your diesel? Does it matter much, or do you just buy however much you need when you need it? Seems like one of those areas where you could save a few bucks -- especially if incomes are going to go down in the next few months, like you all were talking about the other day -- but is the need to keep tabs on the market worth it to you, or do you just want to buy it and move forward? 

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4 Replies
Kay/NC
Honored Advisor

Re: Buying diesel

Jeff, our need for diesel varies greatly, driven by rainfall. Most if it is consumed for pumping lagoons, and we also have more hay to cut and save when precipitation both boosts forage growth and causes us to fertigate more frequently.

Dry year, very little diesel needed. Wet year like this one, we needed more, but it has turned off very dry since mid-September. We also added a second reel last summer, so move 2x the water at once. That cut our diesel purchases tremendously.

With so much variability, we order as needed, and pay within seven days, to get their discount.
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clayton58
Veteran Advisor

Re: Buying diesel

I usually fill up storage in jan or February and sometimes contract more for summer delivery at that time. If I am not priced and need more ill look to buy on a dip
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Shaggy98
Senior Advisor

Re: Buying diesel

I buy it as I need it, switching to no-till has really decreased my diesel usage the last 3 years.  I've got a bulk storage tank, but rarely do I have it filled completely full anymore.  Having the coop just a couple miles up the road that gives me a bulk price each time I use my fuel card helps out with less on farm storage as well.

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Jim Meade / Iowa City
Senior Advisor

Re: Buying diesel

Around here, bulk fuel prices are best in Dec -  Feb every year.  I've saved good money buying then.  A couple of times, including this last year, I haven't done as well, but often I'm drinving 50 cent cheaper gasoline in the summer than is priced at the pump.

 

Diesel, it's pretty much spring and fall.  I try to buy in the winter, too.  It hurts if I run out at peak season because the price is up.

 

Yes, I look ahead on fuel buying maybe better than I do on some other inputs.

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