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Should You Convert from Oil to Natural Gas Heating?

January 20, 2016


If the time has come to replace your existing oil-burning heating unit, it would be wise to take some time to compare the cost and benefits of natural gas heating vs. oil heating. While both oil and gas are effective in heating your home, each of these fuel types has its own pros and cons. Let our Maryland HVAC contractors walk you through some of these advantages and drawbacks.

Oil Heating Pros and Cons

Although oil is by far not the energy source of choice in the United States, that’s not entirely true for the North East. In the older homes of Maryland, oil is often more common than gas, because when these homes were built oil was the more economical option.

Oil also burns very efficiently, making it a good option in extremely cold climates. Another positive aspect of oil is that it has less of an environmental impact than other heat sources do, because burning oil releases nearly no emissions. Oil also does not pose a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning like an improperly functioning gas furnace can.

On the flipside, however, oil is generally a less convenient fueling option, as it has to be delivered to your home’s oil tank and needs to be refilled on a regular basis. Oil is also considerably more expensive than natural gas, and the price of oil varies, so there is always a risk that it will continue to rise.

Natural Gas Heating Pros and Cons

Natural gas is a great heating option if it is available for your home. Not only is the gas itself less expensive, but the equipment necessary for a gas furnace is generally more economical than an oil-burning furnace. For a gas-burning furnace, gas is piped into the house from a gas line connected to the city’s gas supply, therefore you never need to worry about running out of fuel.

Because of its convenience and lower cost, gas is becoming increasingly more popular. A couple of considerations before you decide to go with gas: gas heating is not available to everyone because gas lines are not run in all communities (especially older communities); and gas is a less environmentally friendly option, because natural gas is a limited resource.

Which is the Best Fuel to Heat Your Home?

When deciding whether switching to natural gas is the right move for your home, it is important to first determine whether or not natural gas is available to you. It is also important to consider what matters most to you. Do you need to save some money each month to loosen your belt? Are you concerned about the environmental impact you are making? Do you like the convenience of a gas line, or would you prefer to monitor your oil usage and have your tank refilled when it is low? All of these questions are important for you to consider when making any kind of change in your current heating setup. Natural gas is a great option for many home owners, and we at Cool Breeze would love to answer any questions you have about it or convert your heating system!

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