In the past, heating oil prices kept rising, causing concern for those who are dependent on it. But over the past few years, heating oil prices have been falling.
In January 2016 the average price per litre for kerosene was 32p, which is a drop of 14p from January 2015 when it was 46p per litre*.
Prices for heating oil, including sudden peaks and troughs, are largely affected by the price of crude oil. This can fluctuate depending on the weather, political unrest and global production. Prices can also be affected by local weather and therefore the demand for heating oil, as will prices for delivery – depending on how far you are from a supplier.
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. Read on to discover the best time to buy heating oil and what you can do to make sure you get the best price.
Buy heating oil ahead of time
Where possible, try to plan and buy ahead to save yourself a premium. The speed at which you get your heating oil can change the price.
Express or emergency deliveries are often available, but at a premium price, but waiting longer will cost you less.
Buy heating oil in summer
Prices for heating oil tend to be lower in the summer, as demand is a lot lower, so buying ahead will save you money. For example, the average price for heating oil has already dropped from January to April – it’s down 2p to 30p per litre.
Buying in summer also means you will avoid potential delivery problems in bad weather.
On average, people buy around two or three times a year – depending on the size of tank and energy usage – and order between 1,000 and 2,000 litres.
No matter when you order, it is important to keep an eye on your oil tank gauge. Don’t let it get too low – less than a quarter full, for example – before you order, especially in winter.
Protect and maintain your tank
Heating oil is pricey, so safeguarding it against theft or leaking can save you money in the long run.
Servicing your heating oil tank and boiler once a year using an Oftec-registered technician will alert you to problems before they get worse and will protect against more costly faults.
Get an efficient boiler
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.
According to oil industry body Oftec, you could save £200 a year if you change to a modern condensing boiler that has up to 97% efficiency. But a new boiler will cost anywhere between £1,000 and £1,500, and then between £500 and £1,50 for installation.
(*Average prices for kerosene from Sutherland Tables, which collects domestic fuel pricing data.)
To take advantage of the low prices and buy your home heating oil, please use the quote form at the top of the page to contact us for latest prices. Or you can call your local depot and one of our representatives will be happy to help with your requirements.