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Heating Oil: Truth Or Myth

Posted On: August 31, 2015

Over the years, numerous heating oil myths have developed and spread via traditional media outlets, the web, and by word of mouth. These myths range from the believable to the utterly laughable. Here is some information to help you differentiate fact from fiction:

Myth: Heating Oil Is Expensive

Truth: A common myth repeated by many people is that heating oil is inefficient. However, closer investigation reveals that this is not the case. For instance, data from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) shows that natural gas was consistently more expensive than heating oil from 1987 to 2008. In addition, the price of a gallon of furnace oil fell by 26% in 2014 from a high of $4.242 in February 2014 to $3.142 in Dec. the same year, according to EIA data. With oil prices unlikely to rise to more than $100 very soon, heating oil will continue to be cheaper than natural gas.

Myth: Heating Oil Is Not Environmentally Friendly

recycle logoTruth: Another common myth is that this type of oil generates harmful pollutants such as sulfur. While this may have been true many years ago, the opposite is true today. In fact, furnace oil is not subject to the Federal Clean Air Act because its environmental pollutant levels are almost zero. Furthermore, industry players have agreed to lower the amount of sulfur in heating oil from 1,500 parts per million to just 15 parts per million by 2018.

Myth: Heating Oil Is Not Energy Efficient

Truth: Heating oil is one of the most energy efficient home heating fuels. To be precise, a gallon of heating oil packs about 139,000 units of thermal energy. At the same time, advances and technological improvements in the manufacture of boilers and furnaces has reduced the rate of heating oil consumption tremendously. For example, the efficiency of boilers and furnaces that use heating oil improved by 33.6% from 1978 to 2005.

Myth: Heating Oil Is Dangerous

Truth: Some people say that furnace oil is dangerous and can explode. This is another myth because heating oil requires a minimum temperature of 140 degrees centigrade to ignite. Moreover, furnaces and boilers generally employ safety standards such as preheating, atomizing and igniting fuel inside robust boiler compartments.


animation of a truck delivering oilWith so many myths surrounding heating oil, it is often difficult to tell the truth from fiction. Common myths and misconceptions include assertions that heating oil is dangerous, generates large amounts of environmental pollutants, is expensive, and is not energy efficient. As such, you can never go wrong by investing in a modern furnace or boiler.

For any questions on heating oil, contact SOS XTREME Comfort®. We specialize in heating oil and heating oil deliveries for your home. Click here for more information on heating oil services. For any questions on heating oil for your home, contact us today or give us a call at 845-351-4700.

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