Which Fuel Is Right For Heating Your Home?

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If you live in an area that experiences some bone-chilling winters, then you need a central heating system to keep you warm. But when it comes to heating your home, there are a few choices you’ll need to make. One of them is which type of fuel to use for your central heating.

So how do you choose which one to power your home’s heating? Unfortunately, it’s not always a straightforward answer, and it might take a bit of back and forth. Here are a few things to think about when making your decision. If you consider all of these factors, you’ll be able to rest easy knowing you made the right choice.

  • What fuels are used?

First things first, it’s important to know what are the different ways of powering your heating system. The fuels that are commonly used in households for heating are:

  • Gas
  • Oil
  • Electricity
  • LPG
  • Solid fuels
  • Biomass
  • District heating hot water mains

 

  • Which one is most commonly used?

Out of all the fuels available, gas is the most commonly used. This is because the gas network is the most extensive geographically in most circumstances. Because of this it is also the cheapest fuel choice. Gas prices are slightly lower than oil and are about half the electricity rates. It is also the cleanest fossil fuel, with half the CO2 emissions as oil and a third of those from coal-based solid fuels.

  • What are the prices?

When it comes to your central heating, one of the most important factors affecting your decision will be fuel prices. Since these constitute a large portion of your energy bill, you want the cheapest fuel in order to save as much money as possible.

As mentioned before, gas tends to be the cheapest option in general. In the UK, for example, the running costs of gas, oil, LPG, and electricity are 4.5p/kWh, 6p/kWh, 7.6p/kWh, and 9p/kWh, respectively.

In addition to the actual fuel prices, the prices of the equipment differ depending on the fuel. Again, since gas is the most popular fuel, the equipment that uses it tend to be cheaper than for other fuels. Depending on the fuel, the boiler prices will change, so make sure to consider these prices differences when making your choice.

  • Which fuels are available to your home?

Even though gas seems to be the obvious choice because it is economical, there are situations where it is not ideal. For example, if your home is not connected to the gas connection, it is difficult and expensive to establish a connection. In these circumstances, oil, LPG, and electricity is used.

If you aren’t on the gas network, you’ll need to have oil or LPG delivered directly to your home. The fuel is stored in a storage tank external to your central heating system and home. Although these fuel prices are a little more expensive, it is still the cheapest option because of the lack of a gas supply.

  • Which fuel is the most efficient?

Out of all the fuels available, electricity is the most efficient. The only downsides are that these fuels have quite high costs. However, if your main concern is fuel efficiency, then these are the best choices.

Electricity has different price rates depending on the time of day. During the day, the tariff is much higher than in the night. This is why most electric systems use the nightly rate to warm water and special heat-retaining bricks for use later.

Despite the fuel efficiency, electricity is not necessarily the most environmentally-friendly option. This is because a lot of carbon emissions are released during the production of that electricity. There is also plenty of waste heat that is lost during the process, which is part of the reason for the high costs.