Considerations Before Your Heating Oil Delivery

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As a homeowner with an oil-burning furnace, you have some decisions to make about your heating oil delivery needs. When you first move into a home with an oil-burning furnace, you might feel a little bit overwhelmed by those decisions. There are a few key elements that you need to think about when you are planning your fuel oil delivery if you want to ensure consistent access to heating oil.

Do You Want Automatic Deliveries?

Automatic deliveries take the guesswork out of your fuel oil supply. The company supplying your oil will deliver to you at predetermined intervals based on the delivery schedule that you establish. If you need to alter it, you can typically make changes or schedule an emergency delivery when necessary. However, most automatic delivery systems require you to sign a contract, sometimes for six months or a year of service with a fee if you terminate it early.

Do You Know How Much Oil You Will Use?

If you want automatic delivery but you are not sure how much oil you will use, there are two ways that you can address that. First, find out who the prior owner used for their deliveries and contact them about the frequency of delivery and the fuel oil consumption. You might even be able to negotiate a delivery discount if you retain the same supplier.

Alternatively, schedule a delivery to fill your heating oil tank and then set your first automatic delivery for one month from the fill date. Evaluate how much fuel oil is required to fill the tank again, and that gives you a baseline for your fuel oil consumption. Keep in mind that colder temperatures will lead to increased consumption as your furnace works harder, so allow for more frequent deliveries during the cold weather season.

Do You Prefer On-Demand Deliveries?

Some people are uncomfortable with the commitment of automatic deliveries. If you want to have the flexibility to call for delivery when it suits you, this gives you the opportunity to call around for pricing and get the best on-call deal without a contract restriction. However, sometimes the best on-call deal still costs you more per gallon than you would pay on a contract rate. Consider which is more important as you decide how you want your deliveries handled.

These are just a few of the things to think about when you're establishing your new home's heating oil delivery.