Research shows propane irrigation engines cut costs by 58 percent

Written on: March 31, 2016 by ICM

High Plains/Midwest/AG Journal, Wednesday, March 30, 2016
Producers who irrigated with emissions-compliant, propane-powered irrigation engines reduced fuel costs by 58 percent in 2015, according to research results from the Propane Education & Research Council’s Propane Farm Incentive Program.
Through the 2015 program, producers from 20 states installed and tested 56 propane-powered irrigation engines from seven different manufacturers. Over the course of the year, participants irrigated over 7,000 acres of 22 different crops and saved an average of 58 percent in energy costs compared to their previously owned diesel engines.
“Results from our most recent Propane Farm Incentive Program confirm the substantial savings available to farmers who choose propane irrigation engines,” said Cinch Munson, PERC’s director of agriculture business development. “Reliable, efficient propane engines cost less upfront, plus they provide additional savings in operating costs, allowing farmers to save even more.”
Program participants also expressed extremely high performance and satisfaction ratings for their propane-powered irrigation engines. In a post-season survey, 98 percent rated the propane engines a four or five on a five-point scale, with 5 being high performing. More than 90 percent of producers also provided ratings of a four or five in regards to reliability, power ratings, noise level, efficiency and ease of use. All participants said they are likely or highly likely to recommend a propane-powered irrigation engine to others based on their experience.
“New propane-powered irrigation engines are built from the ground up to run on clean, American-made propane for optimal performance and efficiency,” Munson said. “Propane engines provide the power and durability farmers need at a lower cost than Tier-4-compliant diesel options for optimal savings.”
PERC’s Propane Farm Incentive Program offers up to $5,000 toward new propane engines, building heaters, and other agricultural equipment. Learn more about eligible equipment, see grower testimonials and apply at