How to control and calculate your heating oil consumption?
If you live in a cold region and require heating for your home, energy consumption is probably one of your biggest worries. If you are a homeowner who tries to maintain maximum energy efficiency, chances are that you run your heating system on propane. Propane has gained a great deal of popularity in recent times as a highly efficient heating fuel. However, its efficiency depends on several factors and the right choices can minimize your expenses.
How can you calculate the efficiency of your heating system?
The heating system and its components are among the key factors that affect fuel consumption. The best way to get an idea of its energy efficiency is to check whether the actual consumption is above or below the designated fuel usage.
- The manufacturer’s data plate or the burner nozzle should have a gallons per hour figure on them. It indicates the amount of fuel that the heater would consume for each hour the burner runs.
- Observe the burner operation at different times of the day and track the minutes during which the burner is running. Ideally, it is best to take the measurements when the outdoor temperatures are the highest and the lowest.
- You can now derive the average minutes per hour for which the burner runs and multiply it by 24. This would give you an idea of how many minutes per day the burner is running, and you may divide it by 60 to get the average minutes per hour value.
- Now, the gallons per hour value should tell how much fuel the heater should consume for every sixty minutes it runs. Analyzing your energy bills would give you an idea of how much oil the heater is consuming. You can now compare the two values to check the difference between the designated and actual fuel consumption.
How can you optimize fuel consumption?
Quite naturally, you would want the heating system to run as efficiently as possible. This implies you should try to lower the fuel consumption. There are a few ways to go about it.
- Use the right oil
The quality of the heating oil has a major impact on how efficiently the system would run. Try to purchase high-quality propane from a reliable company. Even if quality propane costs a little more, it would help you save money through increased efficiency.
- Check the AFUE rating
Heating systems come with an annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) rating. The rating comes in the form of a percentage, which shows the percentage of fuel that would convert into heat. Ideally, it is best to get a heating system with an AFUE rating of above 90%.
- Use a smart thermostat
Unlike manual thermostats, a smart thermostat is programmable and comes with a great deal of customization. It would help you optimize the fuel consumption by controlling the heater efficiently. Certain smart thermostats also stay connected to the Wi-Fi and adjust the heating based on weather updates.
- Use an upgraded furnace
If the furnace has grown old, you might want to replace it with a new one. This is because as the system turns older, it starts losing its efficiency. Newer models also come with more energy-efficient technologies, which makes it wise to invest in a better furnace.
Hence, there are multiple ways to control the fuel consumption of your heating system. You should look for leading propane providers near you and try to keep your system up-to-date. Despite the initial investment, you would save money in the long run. Higher efficiency is also beneficial for the environment as it reduces emissions and fuel usage.
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