Oil is the cheapest fuel available for heating homes in Northern Ireland*. There are over 2 million homes in the UK and Ireland using oil for hot water and space heating and with 500,000 homes using oil in Northern Ireland, you know you are using the most popular fuel!
Prices for heating oil, including sudden peaks and dips, are mainly affected by the price of crude oil. This can vary depending on the weather, political unrest and global production. Prices can also be affected by local weather and therefore the demand for heating oil. But no matter what happens to the price of heating oil, there are still a number of things you can do to keep the costs down.
The size of your tank will affect how much heating oil you can store and therefore how much you can order in one go. Generally speaking, the more you order, the cheaper it will be. The average size of domestic heating oil tanks ranges between 1,000 and 3,500 litres (although larger ones are used commercially). It’s worth noting that a heating oil tank should only be filled up to around 80-90% of its capacity to avoid spillage.
The efficiency and age of your boiler will affect how much money you spend, so make sure it's in working order by getting it serviced yearly. If you have a very old or inefficient model, getting an upgrade may save you money in the long run.
A modern condensing boiler is really efficient, making the fuel you’re burning to heat your home go further. They will operate at the highest levels of efficiency (typically 90% plus), making sure your home is warm and cosy, while reducing your heating fuel consumption and spend.
OFTEC estimates that over 70% of oil boilers in Northern Ireland are over 15 years old and could benefit from an upgrade to improve efficiency levels. A condensing oil boiler will increase your efficiency level by up to 18% and that can mean an annual saving of up to £150 on your oil bill every year thereafter. Upgrading to a condensing boiler is easy as all your existing pipe-work remains and the new boiler simply slots into the existing space with minimal upheaval and disruption when compared to switching to an alternative fuels source.
*Sutherland (Independent Energy Experts) Tables based on figures from July-October 2016 of average three bed house in Northern Ireland.