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Roberts Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. Blog

Why Oil Heaters Are on Their Way Out

Oil heating used to be one of the most cost-effective methods of heating a home back in the day. For over a century, people have been keeping homes nice and toasty during the winter with oil-burning heaters. But times are changing and fuel prices are fluctuating in a way that homeowners need to adapt to.

We used to see a lot more homes with oil heaters but now we’re seeing more natural gas-powered heating systems and heat pumps. It’s not because of some powerful ad campaign or because these systems look better, it’s because they’re more efficient and they tend to do a better job of heating your home for a lower cost.

Even HVAC maintenance in Evanston, IL is easier on heat pumps and gas furnaces than it is for oil heating systems. Large oil drums can corrode and cause major problems for your home, which isn’t applicable to electric or natural gas heaters.

Let’s talk about why oil heaters are on their way out.

Oil Is More Expensive

This is one of the most important things we’d like to cover in this blog post. There are a few reasons why you’re seeing a dramatic increase in oil prices in comparison to natural gas prices, and they can be explained down below. There’s no getting around this fact—natural gas costs less to use as a heating fuel than oil.

  • Most heating oil is international. We get a lot of our oil from Canada and overseas, which means that the price of this fuel is at the whim of the international market. Due to natural events of some political event, you could see oil prices spike up in a way that becomes disconcerting to you and your family.
  • You need more oil to heat a home. Oil doesn’t burn as efficiently as natural gas, which means you need more of it to heat the same amount of space. This makes it cost more.
  • Oil needs to be shipped and delivered. Oil needs to be shipped from where it’s refined to where it’s consumed, usually via oil tankers and trucks. This adds to the cost of the oil and will ultimately add up on your end of the bill. Natural gas lines are hooked up directly to your home so nothing has to be delivered.

Gas Furnaces Are More Efficient

We mentioned this before but it’s very important. Natural gas-powered heaters, as well as electric heaters like heat pumps and electric furnaces, are more efficient than oil heaters. This is becoming more and more evident as time goes on, and it’s one of the leading reasons why oil heaters are being dropped in favor of gas systems or heat pumps.

Natural gas furnaces are still getting more efficient as time goes on too, so you might even see this improvement increase over the next few years as well.

Other Systems Are More Eco-Friendly

You might be devoted to your oil heater, but the truth is that the increased prices you pay are also due to more fuel being used. Poor energy or fuel efficiency creates a larger carbon footprint from your home and is generally bad for the environment. Natural gas is clean burning but is more efficient to use, which means you’re saving money and heating your home in a more eco-friendly manner.

Contact Roberts Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. if you’d like to upgrade to a more efficient heating system.

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