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Homeowner Resources

How Often Should I Service My Oil Furnace?

How Often Should I Service My Oil Furnace?

You should be able to count on your oil furnace to provide you with heat whenever you need it. With proper maintenance, that shouldn’t be a problem. But what does proper maintenance mean?

The question isn’t only, “How often should I service my oil furnace?” It’s also important to know what goes into a tune-up for your oil furnace.

Maintaining Your Oil Furnace

Your oil furnace is a complex piece of equipment. It takes regular maintenance to keep a furnace like this in peak condition. When you have a heating technician come to your home to perform a maintenance service call, they’ll perform a system-wide inspection, then tune up your system. The process should include the following:

  • Inspect the oil burner
  • Examine the flame sensor
  • Clean the heat exchange
  • Inspect the oil nozzle, replacing it if necessary
  • Clean the burner fan
  • Check the fuel line for clogs or leakage
  • Lubricate any moving parts
  • Replace the oil filter

When your oil furnace is serviced properly, it can extend its lifespan significantly!

How Often Should I Service My Oil Furnace?

The simple answer to this question is that your oil furnace should be inspected every year, ideally in the late summer or early fall. That way, you can make sure that your furnace will be in top working order before the cold weather sets in.

It’s a good idea to maintain a regular maintenance schedule with a trusted company, which will help to keep your service appointment from slipping your mind.

However, you should also be aware that problems can arise in between these annual visits. It’s worth keeping an eye on your oil furnace, especially during the winter season.

If you see soot around your furnace, it could be a sign that your unit isn’t functioning properly. The same is true with the smoke from the furnace’s chimney, as black smoke usually means that the oil in your furnace isn’t being completely burned. Use your ears, too, as sounds like banging, rattling, or vibrations could indicate that your furnace needs to be repaired.

Benefits of Servicing Your Oil Furnace

Keeping your oil furnace well-maintained has benefits beyond ensuring that your heat keeps blowing during the winter. These benefits include:

  • Efficiency - Keeping your furnace clean, replacing broken parts, and tightening loose connections all improve the efficiency of your heating system.
  • Savings - Improving efficiency can save you money on your monthly utility bills, but you can also avoid expensive repairs by catching problems early.
  • Lifespan - When you defer regular maintenance, you run the risk of shortening your unit’s lifespan. Keeping your furnace well-maintained will make sure that you get the most out of your system.
  • Safety - Regular service appointments on your furnace can dramatically reduce the risks to your home, including carbon monoxide leaks and the potential for fires.
  • Warranties - Most furnace warranties require annual service from a certified professional. Keeping up with your regular maintenance schedule will keep you in good standing with your warranty provider.

Just remember: Regular preventative maintenance offers many benefits to your furnace (and your wallet).


Have questions about your furnace? In addition to home fuel delivery, Atlantic Fuels offers residential and light commercial oil, propane, and natural gas heating system and equipment repair & maintenance services throughout New Hampshire's Seacoast Region - 24/7/365. Give us a call at (603) 964-6967 or send us an email today!