Behind the Numbers: What You Don’t Know About Oil Heat Can Cost You.

November 5, 2014
Behind the Numbers: What You Don’t Know About Oil Heat Can Cost You.

The home heating season has arrived. And with it comes a wave of oh-so-happy forecasts of how this year’s predicted mild New York winter may mean big savings to Long Islanders who still choose to heat their homes with oil – as much as $610, according to a recent NEWSDAY article quoting the Oil Institute of Long Island.

But before you get too excited, consider this: Heating your home with oil costs twice as much as natural gas – no matter what the weather. That same article estimates that a gallon of oil is predicted to cost about $3.68/gallon while the price of a gallon equivalent of natural gas will cost just $1.64. Now, the average Long Island home uses about 880 gallons per year. Do the math: That means the average Long Islander will spend $3,200 heating with oil. The homeowner who heats with gas will spend just $1,450 – or about $1,750 less.

So why is there all this excitement over $610 in oil-heat savings? Maybe it’s because it’s so rare for homeowners to get any savings from oil heat at all. Since 2004, the price of oil in the state has increased about 250 percent while the price of gas has actually declined, according to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. Moreover, the price of gas has remained relatively constant over the past decade; the price of oil can be described as volatile at best. In fact, last winter’s frigid temperatures saw oil heat prices soar in our area to an average $4.47/gallon.

And while no one can predict the future, the U.S. Energy Information Agency projects that home heating oil will continue to be more than twice as expensive as gas through 2040. Think about it: That’s 25 more years of paying twice as much to heat a home with oil rather than gas. (That $610 is looking even less exciting now, isn’t it?)

Join the more than 2.5 million Americans who have already switched to gas heat and enjoy potential savings for years to come. Contact O2G to find out how.

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