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How does a heating degree day system work?

weather tree
Winters on the South Shore of Massachusetts can get pretty rough – the last thing you want when a nor’easter is bearing down on you is to worry whether or not you have enough heating oil or propane to keep your family safe and warm.

That’s where automatic heating oil delivery and automatic propane delivery from Frank Lamparelli come in. With automatic delivery, you shouldn’t have to worry about fuel run-outs – or even phoning for a fuel delivery – again.

How Frank Lamparelli automatic delivery is better

With automatic heating oil delivery and automatic propane delivery, you should never have to head out into the cold or down into the basement to check your tank’s gauge, to subsequently contact Frank Lamparelli to schedule a delivery. Instead, our software will carefully estimate how much fuel you are likely to use, then schedule a delivery when your tank is around 25% full.

How do we estimate your fuel delivery schedule?

So what goes into the calculations our special software uses to come up with a personalized estimate of your heating oil usage or propane usage? More than you might think!

Basically, two factors are used to estimate when we should deliver your heating oil or propane: your average use in the past (or a local average for a home of your size, if you have recently become a Frank Lamparelli customer) and the current weather as measured in heating degree days.

A heating degree day (HDD) is a number that is used to express how much energy is needed to heat a home or building. You can calculate HDDs by subtracting the average temperature of a given day from 65o F, which is the temperature below which heat is needed; every degree that a day’s average temperature is below 65o F is considered one HDD. Here’s an example: if the average temperature for a given day is 50o F, its HDD number is 15 (65 – 50 = 15).

Our software keeps track of heating degree days so we can have some idea of how much heating oil or propane you are likely to use.

Of course, neither heating degree days nor past usage can give us the answer alone of how much fuel you’re using; many other factors come into play, including:

  • How efficient your home is
  • How efficient your furnace or boiler is
  • How well your heating system was installed, and how well it has been maintained
  • How effectively you use your thermostat
  • How you choose to live in your space
  • And more!

For this reason, if you are an automatic delivery customer, it is important to keep us in the loop if anything in your lifestyle changes that might affect how much fuel you’re using. For example, if you have built an addition to your home without changing your home heating system, you will naturally use more fuel – or if a person with a lower tolerance for cold has moved out of your house (an elder, for example), you might use less. Either way, let us know!

For even further reassurance of just how much fuel is in your tank, and just how much you’re using at a given time, we have a way to tell exactly what is in your tank – right here from our office! We offer wireless tank monitoring, now available to all of our customers! This monitor takes ultrasonic readings of your tank level and sends them directly to the Frank Lamparelli office. Setup is a breeze, requiring only a quick 15-30-minute installation from a Frank Lamparelli technician. Contact us today for more information and to have your tank monitor installed!

Discover the benefits of personalized automatic heating oil delivery or automatic propane delivery by becoming a Frank Lamparelli customer, today… and don’t forget to ask us about installing a wireless tank monitor!