Hello World! You may be new to home heating oil and not know the first thing about it. This may be because you’ve moved to an area that doesn’t receive mains gas, or because you’ve moved from electric heating to a cheaper option. If this is the case, you’ll need a quick guide to set you on the right track and answer a few basic questions so that you know what to expect from and how to work your heating system.
What is heating oil, exactly?
There are two different types of oil that are most commonly used for domestic heating purposes.
This type of oil is the most frequently used type of heating oil used in the UK. It’s also known as, quite simply, heating oil and sometimes 28 sec oil (it’s so-called because its viscosity means it takes 28 seconds for 50ml of it to flow through a viscosity measuring apparatus). Kerosene is made by the fractional distillation of petroleum and it’s one of the many by-products of crude oil. If you’re not on the gas network, it’s kerosene that you’ll be using to stay toasty over the winter.
Gas oil is not used as commonly as kerosene. It’s produced in the same way as kerosene – by fractional distillation – and it’s also known as 35 sec oil because it takes 35 seconds to pass through the viscometer. This oil is heavier than kerosene and is most often used in older boilers and in commercial applications and premises.
How much does heating oil usually cost?
Heating oil prices are notorious for fluctuating widely and frequently – sometimes daily. As oil is traded all over the world, there are many things that can affect its price – exchange rate fluctuations, recessions, unrest in the Middle East and so on. Even supply and demand levels affect the prices a lot – oil tends to be a lot cheaper in the summer when fewer people buy it, so if you’re looking for cheap heating oil in NI, summer is the best time to bag a bargain.
Oil tends to, as a cruder product, be affected most when prices come down, so if electricity and gas are cheaper, oil will be especially low in price.
Ways of paying for your heating oil
Most oil suppliers will be happy for you to pay upfront for your winter supply of oil, and most customers do choose this option. It’s a good idea to do this in summer or autumn, when prices are lower. There’s nothing like the feeling of filling your oil tank up in anticipation of the encroaching winter. Additionally, you needn’t worry about having to re-order or make payments every month.
There are also on-going payment methods, but these may cost you more in the long run as you’ll miss out on the times when, say, exchange rate fluctuations mean lower-than-usual prices.
Hopefully you’ll now feel a bit more clued-up about home heating oil and be ready to find a supplier and order a delivery. Your supplier will be more than happy to offer more advice and help, so don’t be afraid to ask.
Thank you for stopping by! Go with God and remember to be kind to one another!