• Natural gas versus oil heat

Natural Gas vs. Oil:
Which is best for your home heating system?

Thinking about upgrading your home heating system? While many New Hampshire homeowners replace their outdated heating systems with natural gas furnaces, oil systems are still a viable option. It really comes down to the age and type of home you have, your budget, and personal preference. To assist you in your decision making, here’s a comparison of natural gas versus oil heating systems:

Heating system costs

Heating System Equipment and Installation Costs

Nearly half of all U.S. households heat primarily with natural gas. While natural gas is generally a more cost-effective heating option over time, a drawback is its higher installation cost—particularly if you have an older home without ductwork or a gas line. If your heating system needs immediate replacement and initial cost is your primary determining factor, an oil burning furnace might be the best option for you.



When upgrading your home heating system, it’s important to consider your new unit’s efficiency rating, or Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE). The rating measures the efficiency of a machine’s combustion—the higher the rating, the higher the efficiency. Gas heating systems may have up to a 10% higher AFUE than their oil counterparts.

oil vs gas

Oil vs. Natural Gas Fuel Costs

When it comes to fuel costs, natural gas comes out on top. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that homeowners who primarily heat with natural gas will spend an average of $580 in the 2019-2020 winter. Those whose primary heat source is oil will spend about $1500. Of course, natural gas production, which is centered in the United States and Canada, is more stable. Oil prices, which are subject to the vagaries of global supply and demand, are obviously going to be more volatile.



When compared with gas and other types of systems, an oil furnace is the safest heating option for your home. Since the type of fuel used is stable and non-flammable, the risk of fire, explosions, and other combustion-related disasters is virtually non-existent. While other heating options don’t necessarily present serious risks, you can’t top the safety of an oil heating system.


Heating System Service & Maintenance

An oil system requires an on-site storage tank and the fuel must be delivered to you. Because of soot and dirt buildup, ongoing maintenance—including chimney cleanings and frequent oil filter changes—is required. This can be managed with a service contract through a reputable HVAC company.

Natural gas heating systems have lower fuel costs, but they must be in an area where a gas supply is available. And while they cost more initially, these types of furnaces run quieter and cleaner, and require very little maintenance.

Choosing the Right Heating System for Your NH Home

When upgrading your home heating system, it’s important to know all of your options. The professionals at Eastern Heat Pump and Mechanical are here to help you choose the right heating system for your type of home, personal needs, and budget. Contact us at 603-518-8480 to schedule a no-obligation consultation. We proudly serve the towns of Alton, Candia, Chester, Concord, Danville, Derry, Dover, Hampton, Laconia, Manchester, Northwood, Portsmouth, Raymond, Salem and Wolfeboro.

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Eastern Heat Pump & Mechanical

724 East Industrial Park Dr, Unit 1
Manchester, NH 03109