Life in Alaska: Heating Our Home

We moved to Juneau, Alaska in October 2013. Juneau is the capital of Alaska and the largest city in southeast Alaska. 32,000 people live here. I am writing this series entitled Life in Alaska because I had no idea what to expect before I moved up here. In general things are the same here, but there are some differences in life here that I think are worth talking about. Plus I want to be able to answer questions from you as well.

Life in Alaska: Heating your homeLife in Alaska: Heating Our Home

Heating your home is a bit different in Alaska. Homes have stoves or heaters called monitors that are run with diesel fuel. Fuel is delivered to your home by a big truck. They pump the stove oil into a tank that sits outside your home. Think gas station on wheels! You pay by the gallon and this can get very pricy! In the interior I hear they buy their heat for the entire winter in bulk.

We also had a wood stove. You can harvest your own wood here, if you know the right spots, or you can buy cords of wood. I would say we burned at least one cord of wood this winter in our wood stove. We also purchase fireside logs to supplement. Those are expensive too! We were lucky and blessed to have people give us wood to burn.

Electric heat is also an option. Either electric baseboard heat or we had a couple of large space  heaters and zoned heated when we did not have wood to burn.

Side note: Our range in the kitchen and our hot water heater needed propane to run on. Another expense that is delivered to you. Winter can be pretty expensive here in Alaska. Now that we have moved out of the cabin and into an apartment more in town, everything is electric. I’m hoping this cuts our bills in half. Fingers crossed we can use what we were paying heating costs to pay down debt. (Have you read my budgeting post? More to come on that topic)


  1. // Reply

    wow seems like a lot of effort to try and stay work, we are about to head into winter here in Australia, and only have electric heating, I can not wait until we have a house and can have a log fire 🙂

  2. // Reply

    It actually sounds similar to heating here in rural Oklahoma! We buy our propane in bulk in the summer (best price) to fill up the huge tanker for winter.

  3. // Reply

    Alaska is such a beautiful place. But I don’t know if I could ever live there. It’s just so cold!!! Lol

  4. // Reply

    So interesting! I had no idea that a fuel truck had to come to your home to have it heated. I have always heard how beautiful Alaska is, but had no idea the efforts that have to be put in to keep warm & cozy. 🙂

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