Oil Heat vs. Other Fuels: A Comparison

Heating oil sign

More than 8 million US households – including homeowners throughout New Jersey – rely on home heating oil as their primary fuel choice, and for some pretty good reasons – especially when compared with other options like propane and natural gas.

Here are three key heating oil advantages to think about when you’re choosing the best fuel source for your home:

  1. Safety – Because it does not burn in a liquid state and is non-explosive – unlike propane or natural gas – heating oil is the safest of major heating fuel sources.
  2. Efficiency – Advances in technology by the heating oil industry have made fuel oil one of the most efficient sources of heat – with efficiency ratings reaching as high as 95 percent.
  3. Cost savings – Oil prices are down, but heating cost savings is about much more than the price of fuel. To measure the true heating value of fuels, you need to compare the energy derived from burning them – a number expressed in BTUs, or British Thermal Units.

Here’s an example where we compare oil and propane considering the BTU value of each fuel for an 85 percent efficient oil heating system versus a 95 percent efficient propane heating system:

FuelHeat producedPer Gallon costHeat produced per dollar
Fuel oil130,000 BTU 85%@$3.2933,587 BTUs / dollar
Propane95,000 BTU 95%@$2.8931,228 BTUs / dollar

As you can see, fuel oil comes out on top by a significant margin, even at a higher per gallon cost.

The bottom line: When you combine new technologies with heating oil’s inherent advantages, it’s really hard to beat. To start benefiting from the advantages of heating oil, contact your local fuel oil dealer today!