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Special Mention: Oil Fired Heaters and Oil Heating Systems

Though not as popular as gas or electric heating, modern variations of oil heating systems serve to fill several useful applications.

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Variations of Available Oil Fired Heaters and Oil Heating Systems

  • The Kerosene Heater: Light duty portable emergency or supplemental heat is the aim of these appliances. Models fall within a price range of under $100 up to several hundred. Some have electric fans to force heat out into the room more quickly, but most operate independently of electricity. Repairs are negligible. Service is mainly in replacing the wick, much like in a kerosene lamp. Care is recommended in maintaining proper adjustment and providing adequate ventilation, as they can generate toxic fumes, especially when improperly adjusted.

  • Commercial/Industrial Space Heaters: Totally portable and used in areas such as construction sites to maintain working temperatures for employees and for use of materials demanding above freezing temperatures. Service is often performed by company personnel or manufacturer service reps, though experienced HVAC professionals familiar with oil heating systems can also do the work.

  • Oil Fired Room Heater: Permanent free-standing or wall-mounted units intended as the primary heating source for small apartments or rooms. They are vented to the outside for safety. Frequent cleaning and a minimal yearly inspection by an HVAC tech is recommended.

  • Oil Fired Water Heaters: These adaptations for water heating are especially useful where an oil-fired heating system is in place, so fuel is no issue and the need to involve another energy source is eliminated. Installation, service and repair can be done by a competent HVAC technician, just as with the oil fired room heater above.

  • Waste Oil Heaters: These high capacity heaters are often mounted on ceilings or high on a wall. They are used in shops, warehouses and sites with large working areas. Their design allows use of waste vehicle oils and food oils, as well as standard type 1 fuel oil (kerosene). This feature allows large commercial operations with fleets maintained on site or that provide maintenance services to others to reuse the oils and save on heating costs. Same goes for large food chains or busy restaurants changing out food oils on a regular large-scale basis.

  • Waste Oil Boilers: In this case, heating is done through hydronic systems where water is heated in an oil-fired boiler and heat distributed throughout a building via radiators, heat registers, or in-floor or in-ceiling pipes. Similar benefits to the heater version in saving and using waste oil.

Standard oil furnaces: These have long been in use; new and improved versions are on the market currently. Look for more on this heating method in a future blog. They fall within the purview of any good HVAC professional.
Special Note: In the waste oil units, proper fuel filtering and maintenance schedules are imperative to prevent clogging by impurities. In all oil burning models with igniters and jets, these must be regularly inspected, cleaned and properly set for optimum efficiency by a competent technician.

Creative Commons Attribution: Permission is granted to repost this article in its entirety with credit to Alley and Co. Heating/Air and a clickable link back to this page.

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Antelope, Arden, Auburn, Cameron Park, Carmichael, Citrus Heights, Diamond Springs, El Dorado Hills, Elk Grove , Foothill Farms, Fair Oaks, Florin, Folsom, Galt, Greenhaven, Granite Bay, Gold River, Laguna, Lincoln, Lodi, Morada, Natomas (North & South), North Highlands, Orangevale, Placerville, Pocket, Rancho Cordova, Rio Linda, Rosemont, Roseville, Sacramento (North, South, East, and West), Shingle Springs, Sloughhouse, Stockton