Clean, efficient oil heat continues to keep millions of homes warm and safe no matter the weather. Recent declines in heating oil prices and positive forecasts for stable prices in the foreseeable future have made oil heat an even more appealing option. And there’s plenty of heating oil to go around because of abundant supply!
“Cutting-edge,” “clean-burning” and “energy-efficient.” These are all words you may be hearing about today’s oil heat, thanks to vast reductions of sulfur levels. Many states have instituted requirements to move heating oil to a low-sulfur blend; such fuel contains about 75% less sulfur than conventional heating oil. As a result:
every gallon of oil that is put in your tank burns more cleanly, with lower emissions.
you benefit from better heating efficiency and easier maintenance, since low-sulfur oil creates fewer deposits on heat exchangers.
The quality of heating oil will get even better in the years ahead. And that’s good news for everyone who heats their home with oil!!
Designed with corrosion-resistant materials, today’s tanks can last for decades. New technology allows for remote monitoring to protect against the rare event of a leak and guarantees that you will always have a sufficient supply of heating oil on hand.
A driving force for the prevailing trend of stable, manageable oil prices has been the huge increases in U.S. crude oil production. The country is producing so much oil that we are moving toward being a net exporter, rather than a net importer. This could become a reality within the next 10 years, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
- Based on an average of 2.6 or more persons per household, it’s estimated that more than 16.5 million people in our country benefit from heating oil each year.
- In 2015, U.S. crude oil production averaged more than 9.4 million barrels per day, the highest annual average crude oil production since 1972. See graphic at right.
- The U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve has a capacity of 727 million barrels; it’s the largest stockpile of government-owned emergency crude oil in the world.
- The Northeast Home Heating Oil Reserve is a one-million barrel supply of ultra-low-sulfur heating oil for homes and businesses in the Northeast.
- The majority of the heating oil used in the United States is refined domestically.
Oil heat has a lot going for it, and many people put safety at the top of the list. While there are plenty of reasons that people feel safe at home with oil heat, here are just three points to remember.
- Oil heat does not and cannot explode. Oil heat customers can be assured that the fuel stored in their tank is very safe.
- Oil heat is not a fire hazard. Heating oil cannot burn in its liquid state. Before combustion can occur, it must be vaporized by your oil burner at temperatures above 140°.
- There are no dangerous surprises. Oil heat poses a very low risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. If an oil burner malfunctions (most often this is due to a lack of maintenance), the safety devices in the unit will typically shut the furnace or boiler off.
The latest oil heating systems are small, smart and super-efficient and can save you, on average, about 30% on your annual heating costs. There are many different equipment options to fit your budget.
- New oil heat systems have efficiency ratings as high as 95%; this provides more warmth for less fuel.
- Fuel savings have reached as high as 48% when outdated boilers have been replaced with high-efficiency oil boilers.
- Many new oil boilers use energy-saving controls that greatly reduce fuel usage during mildly cold weather and provide a more even heat with fewer temperature swings.
- High-efficiency oil furnaces feature variable speed motors that use about 80% less electricity than older motors and provide more consistent airflow and temperatures.
- Heating oil has been reformulated to make it cleaner burning, much more environmentally friendly and significantly more energy efficient. This has paved the way for the next generation of compact, super-efficient boilers and furnaces.
- New oil heat systems are so reliable that most manufacturers offer warranties for as long as ten years; if something ever fails, it’s easy to get replacement parts.