Anyone who has been stuck on the road during icy or snowy conditions during a Massachusetts winter storm can emphasize with what heating oil delivery drivers have to contend with when Mother Nature stands up and roars.
For delivery drivers, ice and snow can turn an already tough job into a potentially hazardous one. Maneuvering with a heavy hose while navigating slippery surfaces can be challenging as well. In some cases, drivers have sustained injuries when they lost their balance because of icy surfaces.
After a snow or ice storm, please clear a path to your oil fill pipe so your driver can reach it quickly and safely. You’ll also need to shovel or plow your driveway so it is free of snow and ice. Safety codes prohibit oil delivery drivers from trying to navigate slippery driveways. Fuel trucks also need a space wide enough for an ambulance to get through.
To make winter deliveries easier and stress-free for you, ask your heating oil company if they offer automatic delivery service. They will use your past heating fuel usage and current weather conditions to know when to schedule a delivery before you run low. This eliminates the work and worry of managing your fuel supply.
But if you still prefer to call for heating oil, you need to give your heating oil company extra time when conditions are harsh in order to avoid running out of fuel. It’s best to call for more fuel when your oil tank falls to the one-quarter mark.
Remember that when you get a heating oil delivery, you’re receiving a home heating fuel that has a remarkable safety record because it is biodegradable, nontoxic, and nonflammable.
For further peace of mind, modern heating oil tanks have been designed to be virtually leak-proof. Whether your oil storage tank is located in your basement or outside your home, the tanks being installed today are designed with corrosion-resistant materials.
Ensuring you have removed any obstacles to getting a timely oil delivery is important. But you shouldn’t forget about paying some attention to your heating system during the cold months.
First of all, make sure you’re keeping the area around your heating system as clean and clutter-free as possible. Never store anything flammable, like paint or old newspapers, anywhere near your system.
If you have an oil furnace, check the air filter a few times during the heating season and clean/change it if it looks dirty. A dirty filter compromises efficiency and if it becomes badly clogged with dust and other debris, can force your system to shut down.
If you have a steam boiler, check the water gauge periodically. Low water levels are a leading cause for boiler shutdowns. Steam boilers should also be “flushed” when the water in the gauge looks rusty.
If you have a hot water boiler, make sure the water level of the boiler is half-full. The boiler’s automatic filling system, controlled by the pressure-reducing valve, should maintain the proper water level at 12 to 15 psi of pressure. If there isn’t a pressure-reducing valve, manually feed the boiler by opening up the water feed valve until the boiler pressure reaches 12 psi.
Every year around this time of year, we hear inspiring stories about how technicians, drivers and other staff went out of their way to help a customer find a solution to a serious home comfort or safety issue.
But that’s just another day on the job for them. Employees of heating oil companies approach their work every day with a can-do attitude. The dedicated team at your local heating oil company takes pride in their responsive service and they truly care about your comfort and safety. That’s especially true when we’re facing big snow storms or single-digit outdoor temperatures and below-zero wind chills.
So, rest easy. You can always expect a fast and courteous response whenever a situation arises where you need help in a hurry. Responsiveness and dependability are among the most important attributes of Massachusetts heating oil companies.