How To Keep Your Oil Boiler From Burning Too Much Oil

If you have recently moved into a new home and you have started to run the oil boiler during the cold winter nights, then you probably want to keep a close eye on oil usage so an oil delivery can be arranged well before you need it. You should understand that a typical oil boiler will utilize around 0.8 and 1.7 gallons of oil for every hour that the boiler runs. On the coldest days, your boiler may run almost continually and burn over 20 gallons of fuel in a single day. However, if your oil tank seems to need refilling every two or three weeks, then your heating system is likely burning too much oil. This can be a very expensive issue to have, and oil waste can happen for a number of reasons. Keep reading to learn about a few of them and also find out how the issues can be fixed.

Wrong Oil Nozzle

The oil nozzle on your oil boiler allows oil to spray into the main compartment of the boiler. This oil is then exposed to a small spark created by electrodes above the nozzle. The oil alights and the flame is continuously fed by the spray nozzle. Oil nozzles contain very small holes to release fuel and they need to be replaced on occasion due to general use and warping of the metal. If a previous owner replaced the nozzle with one that was too big, then too much fuel will be released into the firebox and the excess fuel will be burned off. You will see this happening if you see smoke coming out from underneath the boiler and if you hear a loud bang or rumbling noise when the boiler first fires. The smoke and the noise is the result of the oil combusting all at once. 

It is relatively easy to change the nozzle in your oil boiler. However, there are several different sized nozzle holes and one with too small of a hole will prevent enough oil from entering the firebox and the boiler will not fire at all. Consider asking your furnace or heating repair specialist to supply you with the right part for your make and model of boiler. Afterwards, open the front door of the boiler and look for a spray nozzle on the back side of it. Use a pair of pliers to screw off the old nozzle and screw the new one in place. Restart the boiler to make sure that it fires and that there are no noises or smoke. 

Improper Thermostat Settings

If your boiler seems to turn off and on every few minutes, then the boiler is using too much oil to cycle continuously. This is the case since the boiler will use the most oil in a relatively inefficient manner when it first fires. If the boiler shuts off and fires over and over again, then this increases the amount of oil that is wasted.

To reduce this waste, you will need to make sure that boiler cycles for a longer period of time. Setting the high and low temperatures on the thermostat properly will help you to accomplish this. Keep in mind that this may mean that your heating system may not turn on or shut off immediately when the thermostats inside your home tell it to. The boiler will instead finish the heating or cool off cycle before it turns back on or turns off. You may notice your home temperature dropping or raising a few degrees beyond the home thermostat setting, but this is normal.

To change the thermostat settings on your oil boiler, look for a small box next to the boiler temperature gauge and remove the cover. You will see a gauge marked high and one marked low. Turn the knob on the high marker so it is set to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. The low marker should be set at least 20 degrees cooler at 180 or 160 degrees.

Get in touch with a contractor from a business like Christian Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. for more information on heating services.