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Posted: 6:00 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012

$500 natural gas fueling stations at home are coming



By Clark Howard


Watch out, gas guzzlers! You may soon have the option to fill up a natural gas car at home.

Chesapeake Energy Corp. is working with General Electric Co. and Whirlpool Corp to develop a $500 home refueling station that would fit in a garage, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Approximately 57% of Americans already use natural gas at home for heating or cooking. The device that's under development would hook into an existing natural gas line to deliver compressed natural gas to a vehicle.

Natural gas is a cheap and clean burning domestically produced fuel.

I used to own a 2007 Honda Civic GX that ran on natural gas. I loved the car, but the problem was fueling it up. There was one filling station -- only one -- within 200 miles of my home.

And it was in such a dangerous neighborhood that I had to buy a weapon just to go fill up! I got a civilian version of a police taser and had to pull it twice on people. That had me thinking, "Is this really worth it?"

So two years later, I sold the 2007 Honda for more than I paid for it. There was a buying frenzy surrounds CNG cars at that time.

The Civic sedan that Honda is now selling goes for $26,000 versus a gas-engine equivalent of around $21,500. But over a number of years, this is great alternative because it emits little pollution and has low operating and fuel expenses.