Gas Vs Oil: 5 Reasons to Switch to Gas Heating

Gas vs oil featured image

When deciding how to heat your home, gas vs oil is one of the top considerations for families and businesses alike. You might think that if there’s hot water in the pipes, it’s not important where this comes from, but you’d be wrong.

How you choose to heat your home has a number of knock-on effects on your life.

In fact, the wrong home heating solution will leave you with less money, a worse service, and a larger carbon footprint. To avoid this, today we’ll be looking at some of the concrete benefits of switching from oil to gas heating.

With over half of Northern Ireland homes still being heated by oil, this question has never mattered more.

Let’s take a deeper look at the issue of gas vs oil heating, in terms of how they stack up, and what switching to gas could mean for you.

Gas Vs Oil: Cost

There’s no two ways about it. Gas is by far the cheapest conventional way to heat your home. In fact, the cost of heating a home for a year can be as much as double the cost of heating it using natural gas.

Beyond this, the cost of gas in the UK and Ireland is much more stable than oil prices. As there are a small number of oil producing countries around the world, prices can suddenly shoot up due to a range of international factors.

In Northern Ireland, a large proportion of our gas supply comes from the UK and the Republic, along with a handful of European neighbours. This cuts the cost of transporting fuel, and makes prices considerably more stable.

Of course, there is the initial cost of gas boiler installation. However, with the money you’ll save on fuel costs, you’ll recoup this money within a small number of years, and save greatly over the life of your boiler, as well as adding value to your home.

Ongoing Supply

When comparing gas vs oil, we have to talk about convenience. With gas fired central heating, you have to purchase your fuel up front. This means paying several hundred pounds at a time for someone to fill up your oil tank.

When you run out of oil, you might be without heating for several days.

Gas simply doesn’t have this problem. When you switch to gas, you’ll either be connected to the mains supply, or rely on external cylinders. If you get your gas from the mains, you simply pay for the fuel you use, without having to order it in advance.

If your home isn’t on the gas main, external cylinders can be bought from many garages, hardware shops and even supermarkets, making them far more convenient than booking an oil refill.

Gas vs oil instant hot water
Gas also offers you near-instant hot water. Image credit: Imani

Instant Hot Water

Another major selling point of gas heating over oil is having on demand hot water. Anyone who has ever lived with an oil heating system will understand how frustrating it is to find that there is no hot water, as the boiler hasn’t been on.

In a pinch, oil users will also often have to use a costly immersion heater to quickly heat up bathing water.

Gas heating eliminates this problem. In fact, using a gas boiler will give you access to on-demand hot water, as the boiler requires a much smaller period of time to ignite and start producing heat.

Additionally, this will help you to save money and cut carbon emissions, as you do not need to heat large quantities of water, just to ensure that you have access to this throughout the day. Instead, you only heat what you need using gas, especially if you have a smart thermostat.

Gas is More Environmentally Friendly

These days, we’re all more conscious than ever of protecting the environment. With gas vs oil heating, this is a major consideration. The truth is that gas is considerably less harmful to the environment that coal.

For one thing, we’ve already established that gas requires far less transportation than oil, eliminating the need for emissions from shipping.

Beyond this, burning gas is far less harmful than burning oil. In fact, gas emits half as much carbon as coal. This means that you can heat your home with a clean conscience, as you do your bit to help cut harmful emissions.

As countries around the world begin to introduce taxes on carbon emissions, this means that the cost of heating your home with oil is only going to increase.

Gas vs oil transport costs
Oil requires much more transportation than gas. Image credit: Cameron Venti

Gas Vs Oil: Safety

Gas also offers a number of safety and security benefits over oil. These largely relate to the fact that you don’t have to store all of your fuel on your property. In case of a fire this eliminates the risk of an oil tank explosion.

Fire fighters can simply turn the gas supply to your house off in case of an emergency.

This means that if the worst should happen, there is less chance of a fire spreading and becoming a more serious issue.

Additionally, given the high cost of oil, theft is a real issue. Oil tanks are difficult to secure, so stealing someone’s oil isn’t particularly difficult. After you spend hundreds of points on oil for your home, it’s a real issue if this suddenly goes missing.

If you’re connected to the gas mains, theft cannot occur. Even if you use an external cylinder, the potential losses from theft are greatly reduced.

Gas Vs Oil: Which is Right for You?

When considering how to heat your home, there are a number of things to keep in mind. Key considerations include cost, safety, environmental impact and convenience. Gas beat oil on all of these fronts, even with the costs of installation and boiler servicing.

The truth is that gas is typically cheaper, safer, easier and more environmentally friendly that oil power home heating.

Gas also offers you considerably more flexibility than oil heating, whether you are connected to the mains supply, or using external gas cylinders.

If you’d like to find out more about switching from oil to gas, or get a quote for installing a gas heating system, contact our expert team today.