What Happens When The Furnace Runs Out Of Oil?

image of homeowner with question marks depicting what happens when furnace runs out of oil

Owning a home can sometimes feel like constantly tackling a never-ending series of tasks. It’s as though for every chore you finish, a couple more spring up in its place. Whether it’s addressing a dripping faucet in the bathroom, replacing light bulbs, doing the laundry, or mending a broken fence, there’s always something waiting for your attention.

Ensuring your heating oil supply is sufficient is another task on the extensive homeowner checklist. Those who choose will-call or Cash on Delivery (C.O.D.) service for their heating oil delivery have the responsibility of keeping an eye on their tank levels, typically calling for a refill when it reaches about 30% capacity. But what if you suddenly find your tank unexpectedly empty in the whirlwind of a busy life? This article discusses what happens when furnace runs out of oil.

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Can a Depleted Oil Tank Harm My Heating System?

Running out of heating oil is a common concern among homeowners, with many pondering the possible repercussions. One prevalent worry is whether an empty oil tank can cause harm to your heating system, akin to the damage that occurs to a car’s fuel injector when it runs out of gas.

What Occurs When an Oil Furnace Depletes Its Fuel Supply?

image of a homeowner feeling chilly due to running out of home heating oil

Thankfully, running out of fuel in your heating oil tank does not lead to damage in your furnace.

While it’s a relief to know that an empty tank won’t harm your furnace, it’s undoubtedly preferable to maintain a full tank. A significant benefit is avoiding the hassle of running out, particularly during cold weather. Naturally, without a supply of oil, your furnace will cease to function, leaving you without heat until you can replenish your oil supply. Hence, it’s wise to keep a consistent and adequate supply of fuel to ensure uninterrupted heating.

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Your Heating System & Damage

The good news is that running out of oil doesn’t equate to damage or breakage in your furnace. However, the timing of running out of oil often seems to align with the least convenient moments. For instance, as the colder weather sets in and your furnace starts to consume more oil, a low supply could mean you’re more likely to run out. This situation can be problematic in various ways, not least because a house without heating can increase the risk of illness, particularly for vulnerable groups like children and the elderly.

Rest assured, if your heating oil supply runs out, it won’t cause any damage to your furnace. Additionally, no immediate safety concerns are associated with a depleted heating oil tank. However, this doesn’t imply that no other issues can arise from an empty tank.

Line Bleeding And Oil System Filter Replacement

In the face of extremely cold temperatures, you might encounter frozen water pipes. Should these pipes burst, they can lead to a range of problems, including water damage to your home, the growth of mold, and expensive repair costs.

Heating Oil Filter

After replenishing your oil supply, resetting the furnace becomes necessary, and it’s an opportune moment to consider replacing the oil system’s filter. Usually, this is a cartridge filter located on your furnace, water heater, or oil-fired boiler. Encased in a canister, the filter is strategically placed in the middle of the oil burner and the incoming oil line, filtering the oil before it enters the heating system. Additionally, running out of oil might necessitate bleeding your line, a task best handled by a skilled professional. In such cases, it’s advisable to call an expert to bleed the fuel line and restart your furnace or boiler.

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Why Do I Need To Bleed The Line?

Bleeding the line becomes essential when you’ve run out of fuel because the sediment and contaminants at the base of the heating oil tank can be drawn into your fuel lines. Allowing these particles to enter your heating system can lead to blockages and potentially expensive repairs for your furnace. Thus, bleeding the line is a crucial service to undertake whenever your fuel supply runs dry.

Arranging an appointment for this service isn’t without cost, so it’s important to carefully schedule a suitable time for the HVAC contractor’s visit. These appointments might not always align conveniently with your personal schedule, providing yet another compelling reason to prevent this situation altogether. Ensuring that your fuel supply doesn’t run out is a proactive way to avoid such inconveniences and additional expenses.

Timing Your Fuel Oil Order

A good practice is to plan a refill for your oil tank when it reaches the 25-30 percent capacity mark. To further safeguard against running out, consider arranging a regular home heating oil delivery schedule with a reliable delivery company. This proactive approach can ensure a consistent supply and peace of mind.

If you encounter any issues with your furnace or if it requires maintenance, don’t hesitate to contact a seasoned technician. They can provide a professional assessment and help restore your heating system to excellent working condition.

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Call Columbus Energies For Superior Heating Oil Services

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For all your HVAC and oil delivery needs in Southeastern Massachusetts and the Rhode Island region, contact Columbus Energies. We are family-owned and operated and have been in business for over 60 years. Our company has withstood the test of time by delivering honest, high-quality services that locals can trust. We treat our customers like family. You can always count on our experienced technicians to provide you with service that goes above and beyond your expectations.

For those that use oil-heat, you can select from one of our various oil delivery plans and financing options. This way, you can customize your fuel deliveries to meet your needs. Not only that, but we employ the best professionally certified HVAC contractors who can perform exceptional HVAC services. Some of these services include oil tank replacements, air conditioning maintenance, boiler installations, and more. All of our home comfort services are affordable and are done accurately and promptly at all times.

Schedule a service appointment with Columbus Energies by calling today. Call now and receive a free, in-home estimate.

Call Now: (508) 674-1492

Contact us now by calling (508) 674-1492 to speak to one of our home comfort specialists! Click the link to view our service area.

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