While it may seem like summer just started, the fact is that winter is nearly upon us once more, and you will soon be relying on your furnace to keep your family safe and comfortable. However, if your furnace was not quite keeping you warm enough last year, you may want to consider having it replaced before winter arrives.

Once you start looking at replacement furnaces for your home, you will have to decide whether an oil or natural gas furnace will best meet your family’s needs. While homeowners are opinionated on which heat source is better, both gas and oil furnaces provide their own unique benefits. If you are trying to choose between a gas or oil furnace, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Fuel Characteristics

Of course, the primary difference between oil and gas furnaces is the type of fuel used. Gas furnaces produce heat by burning natural gas. Natural gas is a very common type of fuel used in home’s for heating and cooking, and it can often be connected directly to a home through a connection to a gas utility’s supply line. This makes gas a convenient fuel source for home heating, as you will always have access to natural gas as long as your bill is paid.

Alternatively, while oil is also a common furnace fuel source, you usually have to order quantities of oil as needed. Oil for your furnace would be stored in a tank that you would have to monitor in order to ensure that you don’t run out when you need your furnace most, which can make it a less convenient option.

Cost and Efficiency

An important consideration when choosing a furnace for your home is its overall cost. When it comes to the initial purchase, an oil furnace will likely cost substantially less than gas. Considering how costly these upfront installation costs can be, this makes oil an attractive option for many homeowners. However, it is important to consider ongoing costs such as the cost of fuel, as oil can be more expensive than natural gas, particularly since oil prices tend to go up during the peak season while natural gas costs usually stay consistent. Natural gas furnaces are also usually considered to be more efficient than oil, which can help reduce your fuel consumption; however, both come in high-efficiency models.

Ultimately, whether a gas or oil furnace is the best option for your home will depend on a variety of factors including your initial budget and fuel access. Contact us to learn more about the differences between gas and oil furnaces as well as for help in choosing the right option for your home.