Family • Wellbeing • Adventure

Monday, 13 November 2017

Your First Oil-fired Winter

If you’ve recently moved to a house that has oil-fired central heating then you might be feeling a bit clueless and nervous about your first winter there. There’s no need to feel this way, though, as it’s really easy to get used to and before you know it you’ll be wondering why you didn’t make the switch earlier, especially if you’ve previously relied on electricity to warm your home. You’ll no doubt have a few questions about it all, though, so here are the most common ones – answered!

What is heating oil?

Heating oil comes in two varieties and you should take advice from your supplier to find out which one is best for you.


Kerosene is the most commonly-used heating oil in the UK. It’s called heating oil (to make things simple), although it’s sometimes referred to as 28-second oil as it takes 28 seconds for 50ml to pass through a viscosity measurer. It comes from the fractional distillation of petroleum – one of many by-products – and if you don’t get mains gas, it’s your most likely option for staying warm during the winter.

Gas oil

Gas oil isn’t as widespread as kerosene, although it’s another by-product of petroleum distillation. It’s sometimes called 35-second oil because it takes 35 seconds to get through the viscometer. It’s denser than kerosene and is usually used to fire older boilers and also in commercial applications.

How much does it cost? Is it expensive?

One thing about heating oil – whichever type you choose – is that the price can fluctuate quite a bit. Oil is traded all over the world on a daily basis and all sorts of things affect its price. If you keep an eye on the news, you’ll see that exchange rate changes, disorder (or, indeed, calm) in the Middle East, recessions, spikes in production and even the weather cause peaks and troughs in the price per barrel. These prices are passed on to the end-users, of course, so always check what’s going on before you place your order with as you could shave a few pounds off by waiting a day or two.

How can I pay for my heating oil?

Your oil supplier can offer you several ways to pay for your oil. You could pay upfront for a bulk order over the summer months, when demand and therefore prices are lower, or you could pay a set price every month. Lots of people like to fill their tank up over the summer so that they get a seasonal and a bulk discount, as well as feeling secure and warm as the colder weather creeps in. If you find it difficult to make one big payment, then monthly or quarterly payments may suit you better. However, the downside of this is that these payments are fixed so you don’t get to take advantage of falling prices.

So, now you know a bit more about your heating oil, you’ll feel more prepared for using it over the winter. You can always talk to your supplier for advice and help

K Elizabeth xoxox
how to keep your home warm this winter

*Collaborative Post

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