Oil Fired Furnace vs. Gas Fired Furnace

Furnaces are a vital part of residential and commercial buildings, keeping you warm in the winter and helping circulate conditioned air from the cooling system. If you want to enhance the comfort of your indoor spaces, a furnace can help. However, there are different appliances, so it’s crucial to ensure you install the right one for your needs. Among the most commonly used furnaces are oil and gas, and before you make up your mind, weigh the pros and cons of each.

Like most systems in your home or workplace, routine maintenance is essential to maintain an efficient and durable appliance. This calls for routine maintenance checks by a trusted HVAC service, ensuring trivial signs of deterioration are addressed straightaway. Let’s look at both furnaces and the differences that set them apart to help you make a more informed decision.

Which Fuel is Better: Oil or Gas?

There are many aspects to consider when choosing the best fuel, the most prominent reason being cost. While heating oil costs more than gas, having a full tank in the building gives you peace of mind. You do not have to worry about the frequent system failure problems caused by a limited gas supply. This is a vital consideration, especially in the cold winter months.

In addition, oil burns hotter than gas, making oil-fired furnaces heat your home quicker than gas-fired furnaces and they consume less fuel. This means there is less condensation because oil burns hotter, reducing the rate of deterioration. With that in mind, even if oil prices are higher, it saves you more money in the long run.

Maintenance of Oil Vs. Gas Furnaces

Industry experts recommend maintaining a leak-free chimney vent, whether you have an oil or gas-fired furnace. As mentioned, condensation is a key contributor to the deterioration of your appliance, resulting in frequent repairs and reduced lifespan. The chimney vent or flue is the part of the furnace where combustion happens, and heat is channeled to your building. These components also prevent toxic fumes from flowing back into your home, aiding in effective and safe combustion.

Oil and gas furnaces have inbuilt air handling equipment, a burner, and a heat exchanger. However, an oil furnace has a pump that directs fuel to the furnace. Regardless of your furnace choice, ensure the air filters in your HVAC system are replaced regularly.

Safety is an essential aspect of selecting the best furnace type. Oil furnaces are safer than gas ones, and if there’s a problem, there are visible signs to look out for before it becomes toxic. The last thing any property owner wants is carbon monoxide compromising air quality in your indoor spaces. The same can’t be said for gas furnaces, and most signs of damage go undetected until there’s a leak.

What to Consider Before You Purchase a Gas-fired Furnace

Before you decide to invest in a gas furnace, there are several things you need to know to ensure you get the most out of it. A furnace is a long-term investment in the comfort of your home or workplace, hence the need to consult a professional HVAC service for advice. Leverage our extensive industry knowledge and experience, ensuring your appliance remains in optimal condition. Here are critical factors to consider before purchasing a gas-fired furnace.

Requires More Safety Precautions

Although oil furnaces give warning signs when they are not running as expected, the same cannot be said for gas furnaces. If you intend to install this furnace, you must take all the precautions to detect carbon monoxide before it wreaks on your premises. It is also important to note that gas furnaces are the country’s leading cause of carbon monoxide fatalities.

Delaying maintenance inspections can escalate the problem, turning your furnace into an explosive device waiting to go off. We conduct comprehensive checks, ensuring your appliance is properly vented, and signs of damage are addressed in time. Carbon monoxide can circulate in your home, compromising the safety of your loved ones or, worse, death.

Concerns About Supply

Another key factor to consider before buying a gas furnace is availability. With the increase in population over the past fifty years, industry experts wonder if local production can meet the market demand. If the United States reserve for natural gas runs out, the country will be forced to depend on gas imports in the future. This will drive the cost up, as most of the world’s gas reserves are located outside the country. As mentioned, a furnace is a long-term investment, and the possible scarcity or price increase are critical factors to consider.

Fewer Service Options

Big utility companies often supply gas, which limits your options for choosing a service provider. Moreover, gas is relayed through an underground network of pipes leading into your home or workplace. A leak or damage to the lines can put your entire premises in danger or interrupt operations as you wait for the problem to be addressed.

On the other hand, heating oil suppliers are many, so you do not have to worry when your unit has a problem or you run out of oil in the middle of winter. Heat loss in the dead of winter can be detrimental to essential systems like plumbing, creating more problems that are costly to repair.

Why You Should Consider an Oil Furnace

Now that you know about gas furnaces and factors to consider before buying and installing one, let’s look at the safer alternative: oil-fired furnaces. There are many reasons this type of unit is ideal for your residential or commercial property, and professional HVAC service can ensure it is properly installed. Here are why you should opt for an Oil furnace in your building.

Plentiful Supply of Fuel Oil

The global oil and petroleum reserves are at an all-time high. The Northeast heating oil reserve has two million barrels, and the strategic petroleum reserve has nearly eight hundred million barrels: not to mention the United States doesn’t rely on one source in the event of a shortage. In addition, many supply firms are strategically located across the country with enough inventory and an efficient ordering process. This is the main advantage oil furnaces have over gas units, giving property owners peace of mind when they rely on their furnaces the most.

Safe to Use and Store

Safety should be the primary concern if you want to invest in an HVAC system. Unlike a gas furnace, oil is pumped into the combustion chamber and only catches fire after reaching temperatures of 140 degrees Fahrenheit. This makes it safer since dropping a lit matchstick in the oil tank will have the same effect as dropping it in water. You don’t have to worry about explosions or uncontrolled fires starting in your home.

Another benefit is the low carbon emission of heating systems, protecting everyone in the building from suffocation. The ability to tell visible signs of deterioration is a bonus for property owners, giving you time to hire a professional service provider before things get out of hand. Gas-fired furnaces don’t have the same safety benefits and can cause an explosion when least expected.

Converting Oil to Gas is Expensive

If you already have an oil furnace and are thinking of switching to gas, don’t! Upgrading your current furnace to a gas-fired unit is pretty expensive, and keeping the one you have makes more sense. However, consult a reputable HVAC company about safer heating solutions this winter if you have a gas furnace. Regardless of the type of furnace in your building, scheduling routine maintenance inspections are critical to ensuring your unit is functioning efficiently.

Heating Oil Systems Are Exceptionally Clean

Over the past decade, technological advancements have significantly contributed to the development of more efficient and environmentally-friendly systems. Modern oil heating furnaces re-burn fuel, reducing the emission released into the environment. A properly maintained oil furnace has a clean burn that contains the soot generated in the tank.

An oil-fired unit is the best solution if you want to reduce your carbon footprint and keep your home warm. Gas systems are the largest contributor to methane emissions, contributing to the negative effects of global warming. By switching to an oil system, you are taking a proactive approach to reduce greenhouse gases and improving the quality of life around you.

Innovative Heating Oil Technologies

Industry experts constantly develop new heating systems and fuels to enhance efficiency and cleanliness. These improvements not only reduce emissions but fuel consumption as well. While heating oil costs slightly higher than gas, you can save more money in the long run. The trend will only improve, protecting you from toxic emissions and costly repairs, which is usually the case with a malfunctioning gas-fired furnace.

Long Lifespans

Oil-fired units offer efficient and safe operation. The units produce more heat than gas furnaces, eliminating all the condensation in the tank. Prolonged exposure to dampness increases the rate of deterioration, reducing the overall lifespan of your appliance. Property owners can also detect visible signs of damage before they become more pronounced by hiring a professional repair service. A well-maintained oil-fired furnace can run for 25 years or more, making it a cost-effective and durable heating solution.

Higher Water Recover Rate

The hot water recovery rate in oil furnaces is twice that of gas-powered heaters. Your needs determine recovery, hence the need to consult a professional HVAC technician. A residential home has different needs from a commercial establishment, and an expert can help you choose the right model with the perfect water recovery rate for your needs.

More Service Options and Control

Oil furnaces give you more control over fuel consumption and management. With all the different suppliers in the market, you can choose the best rates and have oil delivered to your location within a specific time. Property owners can opt to install a fuel oil storage tank, allowing them to manage the amount used to heat your building. This level of control doesn’t exist with gas furnaces, which makes it challenging to manage.

With this information, you have everything you need to decide your preferred furnace type. Oil-fired furnaces are ideal for general heating needs and the environment, which is more than we can say for gas furnaces. It is important to conduct routine maintenance, particularly cleaning.

Why Your Furnace Should Be Cleaned

A furnace is an essential appliance that helps maintain the cozy ambiance of your indoor space. Whether you have a gas or oil-fired furnace, cleaning is an essential maintenance practice that prevents wear and tear. The process of cold heating air and releasing it into the building’s ductwork can take a toll on the filters, causing them to clog and not work properly. Routine cleaning ensures proper air circulation and reduces the time it takes to heat air.

Most HVAC manufacturers issue warranties for their appliances, protecting you from the hefty cost of replacement or repairs when something goes wrong and it is unexpected. However, failure to provide regular maintenance can void the warranty, and you will be forced to cover the cost of damages out of your own pocket. Ensure the maintenance service you hire is licensed and insured to enjoy the financial relief of a warranty.

If maintenance is delayed, the furnace can clog, utilizing more energy and increasing your utility bill. When you hire a professional to clean your appliance, all the debris and dirt are cleaned from the filters, reducing the power used to heat the air.

If you experience constant breakdowns or inefficient airflow, you need your furnace cleaned. Proper care and maintenance go a long way in steering clear of risks that compromise the efficiency and function of your unit. Keeping a unit running properly will save you time and money. 

A professional leverages cutting-edge equipment and expertise to detect the slightest deterioration before it wreaks havoc on the entire system. Make sure you get a reputable professional to help with your unit today by giving us a call.                                

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