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This section of our website will answer some of the frequently asked question about heating oil. If you have further questions, never hesitate to contact us. We would love to hear from you!

How Long Should Heating Oil Last?


If your fuel oil tank is clean, the oil will usually not “go bad” and will heat the home efficiently. The amount of oil consumed varies on a number of different factors in the home.

People use heating oil in their homes at a sliding scale determined mostly by the outside temperature. If the weather outside is averaging 50 degrees, you will probably use 2 gallons or less of oil per day. If the weather is down to below zero, you are liable to use as much as 8 gallons of heating oil per day while temperatures stay at that level. Fortunately, temperatures at both ends of the scale balance one another out. You can, therefore, expect to consume around 5 gallons per day during the coldest months of winter.

It is very important to check your tank regularly during the winter months to make sure you don’t run out. Schedule a refill with C & M Oil Company when you get to about a quarter of a tank. 


Factors Affecting Heating Oil Usage


During the fall and winter months, a host of internal and external factors determine your household fuel consumption, namely the following:

  1. The Size of Your Home. A smaller home (1000 square foot) will use less fuel oil than a larger home (2500 square foot).

  2. The Design of Your Home. A drafty house, high ceilings, and poor insulation are examples of what could cause you to consume more fuel. Some things you could do to use less fuel are: putting plastic on windows in the winter, keeping outside doors closed when not in use, and not keeping the temperature too high.

  3. Condition of Oil Furnace. Your furnace will use more fuel if it is not functioning at its best. Therefore you should be sure to service your furnace before you start using it for the season. If not, it might struggle to perform its intended functions, and this could lead to higher levels of oil consumption.

  4. Local Temperatures. Outside temperatures have a significant impact on how much heating oil your house will use. For example, if the average nightly temperature is 40 degrees Fahrenheit, your house might consume 3.7 gallons of heating oil per day. If the temperature drops to 15 degrees at night it will use more to heat your home and you will likely burn about 7.8 gallons per day.

  5. Hours Your Home Is Occupied. If your home is unoccupied during the day or while you are on vacation, you do not need the heat on or set high. If you like your house warm when you get home from work, get a programmable thermostat and set it to turn on 30 min before you get home. Another way to reduce fuel consumption is to wear layers while at home, then you can turn the temp down. What we are getting at here is: if no one is home have the heat turned down.


When Should I Fill My Heating Oil Tank?


You could fill your tank anytime of the year, but certain times are better than others:

  1. Off Season. Although we may get a few cold days in early spring that require the heat to be turned on, most of the months from April to September will not require heat. It would be better for you and us to deliver out of season.

  2. Before the HolidaysSince holidays are a time to enjoy spending with family and friends for you and us. The last thing you want to worry about is whether you have enough fuel to keep you and your family comfortable. Check and confirm your levels and order before the holidays.

  3. Weekdays. You will want to order during the week, BEFORE you run out. Our office staff only works during the week and are the best ones to help you get your orders to the drivers.


How Much Heating Oil Do I Need?


275 gallons is the size of an average home heating fuel tank. The filling capacity is around 260 gallons. Normally customers go through a tank of fuel every month to two months depending on their consumption rate. The temperature normally starts to drop in October and November and will stay cold through February and March. If you have more than one tank or a different size tank then you will need to factor this in when you are marking your fill dates on your calendar.

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