Lulloff works to stay ahead of demand
By Eric Mathes
Eric Mathes photo
Brad Schisel does his best to display one of the washer units available at Lulloff True Value Hardware in Kiel.

The brutal, cold winter has been keeping everyone extra busy at Lulloff True Value Hardware in Kiel.

Owner Joel Lulloff said, “The freezing weather over the last few months has made it one of our busiest times ever.”

Shortages in liquefied petroleum gas have sent prices sky rocketing across the country over recent months, leading to higher demands of pellets stoves and other alternative heat sources.

“People are trying to be as prepared as possible for the remaining winter months in case they can’t get more LP when they need it,” Lulloff said. “Pellet stoves, electric heaters, and propane torpedo heaters have been flying off our shelves.”

The region’s gas shortage serves as a callous reminder of the importance of homeowners and families being prepared for winter weather in advance.

Proactive preparation pays off

Lulloff urges that community members be proactive in winter planning early on. He said, “This winter is a reminder of the importance of being prepared for the conditions. When you’re prepared, you don’t have to be as reactive and can save yourself a lot of money in the process.”

Stocking up on heat sources during the spring and summer months is a great way to get ahead of the urgency.

When winter finally gives way to spring, Lulloff Hardware will again be offering spring sales on heating products and supplies.

“Among other things, this is a great time to stock up on wood pellets,” Lulloff said. “After the winter, prices come down from suppliers and we are also able to offer large quantities in bulk.”

Customers can take advantage of higher savings by buying pellets by the skid instead of individual bags.

As easy as it is to lose track of time as the seasons change, storing pellets purchased in the warmer months provides readiness for families when the temperatures start to drop.

The spring sales also bring a reminder for maintenance on wood and pellet stoves. Lulloff said, “This is a critical time for upkeep on your stoves and wood burners. After being used throughout the winter, ash builds up inside the stove. Over time, that ash turns to a crust and hardens throughout the summer when not being used. The longer it sits, the more difficult it becomes to maintain.”

Regular maintenance cleaning is easy and affordable if done at the right time, but as Lulloff reminds customers, it becomes more costly and time consuming if neglected.

Prices for cleaning are as low as $60 on a regular unit and can take only 20 minutes. Lulloff explained that the difference in waiting until the fall or longer

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