Pros and Cons of Oil Heating
Heating oil produces a lot of warmth for your home.
At this time of year, a dependable, high-performance heating system is crucial for your family’s comfort and safety. When facing days of sustained freezing weather, you can’t afford an inefficient or unreliable furnace or boiler.
In Morristown and throughout Northern New Jersey, the Dixon Energy team services homes that are heated with heating oil, propane, natural gas and electricity. We can tell you candidly what’s great about oil heating — and other options you may want to consider.
Oil Heating Pros
People have been heating their homes with oil products for nearly two centuries. It has some tried-and-tested benefits, including the following:
- Heat Generation: According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, a single gallon of heating oil can generate about 138,500 Btu of heat energy. To produce that amount of heat, you’d need roughly 134 cubic feet of natural gas or 41 kilowatt-hours of electricity.
- Improved Efficiency: Modern oil furnaces and boilers are more efficient than ever. Today’s oil-powered homes use about 700 fewer gallons of heating oil yearly compared to the 1970s!
- Safety: Heating oil is one of the safest ways to heat your home. It will not explode in its liquid form. To combust, heating oil must be vaporized by your burner at temperatures above 140°F.
- Energy Independence: With natural gas heating, you aren’t at the mercy of a utility for your heat. If there’s a system issue in your neighborhood, your natural gas furnace or boiler could be out of commission. You control your heating oil supply with a fuel tank in your home.
- Environmental Impact: Heating oil is greener than ever. All heating oil is ultra-low-sulfur, and our fuel contains organic biodiesel that significantly lowers greenhouse gas emissions.
Oil Heating Cons
There are also some cons to using heating oil, including:
- Heating Oil Tank Issues: These tanks can take up a fair amount of space in your basement or garage. And while modern, double-walled oil tanks are virtually leak-proof, older steel-lined ones are susceptible to fuel spills, which can be costly to clean up.
- International Fuel Markets: Because petroleum heating oil is a product of crude oil, it is susceptible to the ups and downs of global energy markets.
- Limited Uses: While a boiler, furnace or water heater may run on heating oil, you can’t use this fuel to power kitchen ranges, clothes dryers and other products.
Invest in Efficiency
When it comes to saving money on your home’s heating, converting to another energy source isn’t always the best option. The upfront costs can be prohibitive. For example, switching from heating oil to natural gas can cost between $6,000 and $13,000 — and there is never a guarantee that you’ll see sufficient energy savings to recoup the expense.
We’ve found that a better solution is to improve the efficiency of your existing oil-fired equipment. You can do this with regular maintenance or by upgrading to a high-efficiency oil furnace or boiler.
Talk to Dixon Energy about your heating options.
At Dixon Energy, we handle conversions to propane and natural gas. We also install high-efficiency oil and gas heating equipment, as well as electric heat pumps and mini-splits. Our skilled, experienced HVAC team can look at your home and budget and advise the best way to maximize your home comfort while minimizing your energy costs.
Get the home heating you deserve: contact the Dixon Energy team today.