Thursday, 13 February 2020

Oil Vs LPG: What's Best For Your Home?

For anyone who lives in the rural parts of the UK, things can be very different from living in urban areas. 
One thing in particular that is vastly different to living in the suburbs, towns or cities is that your home may be off the grid for certain energy suppliers. This means you would have to choose alternative options to the usual piped gas or regular electricity supplier to heat your home and cook your meals.
Two options I would like to focus on today are LPG and Oil. 
For instance here in Devon there is a thriving market for properties that are out of town in more rural and off the grid locations. As such, they often have to choose whether oil or LPG is best for their needs.
For those that don't know what it is, LPG is short for Liquified Petroleum Gas. 
Liquified Petroleum Gas is a mixture of hydrocarbon gases (usually Butane or Propane). It has been used for many years as an alternative fuel source for vehicles and can be a very effective alternative to petrol.
For heating and cooking purposes in off-grid homes, LPG is stored in an (often underground and out of sight) tank. With this, the property does not have a large (often unsightly) gas storage container placed next to it. Many believe that since the storage unit is undergroundit is also a safer form of heating than oil. 
Another bonus of having the storage facility underground is it helps prevent fuel theft. Many people have discovered to their dismay that their oil storage tank has been syphoned by thieves and are left with a very costly bill to replace the stolen fuel.
LPG is also regarded as being a far greener source of energy than some other fuels.
BioLPG for instance can reduce carbon footprint substantially according to experts, and even LPG emits lower emissions, compared to oil.
Many suppliers of LPG now employ smart technology and are informed automatically when the storage unit is running low. The supplier can then contact the customer and arrange a time convenient for the end user. This has been seen as a real bonus by many LPG users as it saves them checking and ordering more fuel (often when they really need it most)!
Whilst some people do choose oil as their primary source of energy, there can be some downsides.
Oil has been used for many years as a fuel source for heating by many people but that trend is starting to change. The other downside of oil is that it cannot be used for cooking purposes because of the harmful fumes, smells and possibility of leaks. On the other hand, one of the main benefits of LPG is that it allows you to cook on a controlled flame despite there being no access to mains gas.
Although oil is cheaper than LPG, the main benefit of LPG is that it is versatile; it can be used for central heating, cooking and in LPG boilers, which makes the running cost of LPG lower. Moreover, LPG boilers are generally cheaper than oil boilers, so that’s another plus.
As stated above, with oil becoming an increasingly expensive commodity, properties with visible oil tanks are increasingly becoming targets for fuel thieves.
People have also started to switch to LPG from oil when considering their property resale values.
Whilst they may be used to having a visible fuel tank outside, it can be off putting to would be buyers. With this in mind, many are switching to LPG to allow the storage units to be placed underground and out of sight.
So whether you choose LPG or Oil, there are many factors to consider, not just those mentioned above and careful consideration and research should be undertaken before committing to your energy source.
Further information on LPG, including Codes of Practice, click here.
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