This is the Best Time to Schedule Your Heating Oil Delivery
Q: My family lives in a house with oil heating and we have just received our oil supply contract for the coming year. Should we register for budget settlement? Should we set a price for the year or should we orientate ourselves on the fluctuating market price? Help! We appreciate any advice you can give us in order to get the best, most convenient deal and service.
A: The reality of oil prices is that they can change at any time, but past oil price records make it possible to track market trends and find the average best time of year to buy and schedule heating oil supplies. Heating oil supply companies may offer reduced heating oil supply prices for a monthly plan, but it is important to distinguish between an annual prepaid plan, which can cost you more, and a fixed monthly plan, which is designed to save customers money. Better to skip a plan altogether. If so, you need to invest in heating oil during the summer months between April and September to get the lowest supply of heating oil anywhere near your home.
The best time to deliver heating oil is in summer.
The cost of heating oil and heating oil delivery depends on the time of year and the location of the nearby heating oil delivery companies. This is because oil prices fluctuate throughout the year as the demand for oil increases or decreases. When demand is low, the price of heating oil falls, so summer is the best time to get oil at reduced costs. Oil in particular is usually cheapest between April and September.
Most people do not need to heat their homes in the summer months. If they aren’t burning heating oil, people are not calling their heating oil supplier to refill their tank. However, when it gets colder, the demand for heating oil rises, causing some to spend more on 24-hour heating oil delivery or even on same-day delivery of heating oil. You can avoid the rush by getting your heating oil in the summer. Since heating oil can last 1.5 to 2 years, it can be worth converting to a heating oil tank that holds annual oil, so that you only need a supply of heating oil once a year.
With monthly heating oil delivery packages, you save 3 to 5 percent and ensure that your tank is never empty.
A heating oil delivery company often has several different options for ordering heating oil, including a pay-per-delivery option, an annual prepaid heating oil plan, and a capped monthly heating oil delivery plan. The pay-per-delivery option gives the user full control over when to schedule and pay for a fuel oil delivery, but people sometimes forget they need a top-up, resulting in an emergency delivery.
With annual prepaid tariffs, the user is billed for the estimated amount of heating oil they would normally use throughout the year. This option can end up costing more than just scheduling individual deliveries as needed. A monthly plan with a cap, on the other hand, offers customers the best of both worlds, with an automatically scheduled delivery that can save between 3 and 5 percent of the annual heating oil delivery costs. With this type of plan, the cost per gallon can’t exceed the price cap, but it can drop below the cap. So you never pay more than the maximum price, but you have the potential to pay less.
As a rule, the heating oil tank should always be refilled when it is about a quarter full. This will ensure that you don’t run out of fuel oil and that the contaminants that build up at the bottom of the tank are not pumped through the system. To avoid having to pay for emergency heating oil supplies to keep the house warm, investing in a fixed monthly supply schedule can be a good idea. Note, however, that heating oil providers usually charge a fee for this option.
Homeowners who do not opt for the scheduled heating oil delivery service should request delivery on a Monday, when prices are typically the lowest.
The price of heating oil fluctuates with the market. As mentioned earlier, there are large seasonal price changes, but also daily changes triggered by demand during the week. Heating oil prices are linked to gasoline and crude oil prices, which are most expensive at the end of the week and on weekends. Prices drop at the beginning of the week, when most people are just commuting to work or working from home.
Since heating oil prices tend to be lower earlier in the week, homeowners who can order heating oil on demand should request delivery on Monday, except in Hawaii, where the lowest price is usually on Wednesday. Of course, most homes in Hawaii don’t rely on heating oil, so the need for heating oil is not that worrying.
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Even if the prices for heating oil deliveries are lower in summer, you can never be one hundred percent sure.
The general trend is that heating oil prices drop in the summer months when demand drops significantly because people turn off the heating and turn on the air conditioning. However, don’t assume that your local heating oil supplier is following this trend just because heating oil prices are lower in the summer or that there are no unexpected market fluctuations that could affect the heating oil supply. This increases the price even when there is little demand.
Against this background, it is important to inquire with several heating oil supply companies and always take the time to check suspiciously high heating oil supply costs in the summer months. Just assuming the price will be lower, you can inadvertently agree to a high-priced delivery, which could come as a shock to your bank account.
Keep in mind that more air than fuel in the tank can create condensation, which you want to avoid.
One of the most important reasons for filling the heating oil tank is to avoid condensation in the tank. Condensation forms when there is a significant temperature difference between the ambient air and the air in the tank. The warm air in the tank condenses on the cooler metal and forms water on the inner surfaces which, when mixed with the heating oil, can lead to unplanned downtimes and device failures.
To avoid this situation, always keep the tank full, make sure it is in a shady place, and make sure it is equipped with a fuel filter to remove water and debris from the tank. If the tank is not in a shady spot, consider painting it white to reduce the effects of the sun’s heat. It is also advisable to fill the tank at the end of the day to normalize fuel temperatures and reduce condensation during the night.
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