Tanks to gallons, gallons to liters, and volume to energy output; if you have heating oil as your main source of heating fuel, you are doing math all year long just to figure out how much oil you need. Sometimes, you miscalculate, ordering too much, while at other times you may purchase just enough or not enough at all. How can you rectify this issue so that your heating oil delivery services are consistent, on target, and not faulted for faulty calculations? Here is how.
Create a Chart
Buying a home with a heating oil tank does not mean you automatically receive the knowledge or references you need to buy oil. In fact, it frequently means quite the opposite. Until you get the hang of it, you will flop, flounder, and fail, finding that you need to make constant adjustments to your oil purchase and delivery. You can catch on faster if you first create a chart.
On this chart you need to include:
- The size of your heating tank
- The number of gallons or liters it takes to fill your tank
- The amount of oil that can be successfully delivered to you in one delivery
- The cost per liter or gallon of fuel and some typical monthly fluctuations and seasonal fluctuations
Start with columns and rows, based on the price per "x" along the vertical columns, and the number "x" of gallons or liters purchased along the horizontal rows. This will help you trace your finger along the amount you want to buy and then up to the total purchase price.
The U.S. is the only country where the metric system is not the primary method of measuring. As such, you will have to learn how to convert liters to gallons and gallons to liters because some oil delivery companies use the metric measurement for fuel and others use the standard measure of fuel. Additionally, your tank may state how many liters of fuel it can hold, and without knowing how to convert that to gallons, you will always over- or under-purchase your fuel.
Make a second chart, similar to the one above, that lists liters of fuel and price per liter. Then you will know who charges more per liter versus who charges less by the gallon. (A gallon is less than a liter, so you should not be surprised that the cost of a liter of oil is more than the cost of a gallon.)
Track Volume Usage
Knowing the volume of your oil tank and keeping track of how fast you burn through the fuel helps. If you fill the tank completely at the beginning of one month, and then burn through that in five weeks, you can figure out how much of the total volume you use each week. This can help you predict with better accuracy how much your next fuel order should be if and when you experience unseasonally warmer temperatures for a week or more.