Home oil automatic delivery is based on a calculation that takes into account two pieces of information: the heating degree day (HDD) and the K-factor that uses the degree day value to determine when delivery for a particular household is needed again. Understanding the HDD calculations allows you to determine how an oil delivery company can calculate, to within a certain degree of accuracy, the time of your next automatic delivery to ensure that you are never out of supply.
What Exactly is a Heating Degree Day?
A degree day can be thought of as a unit of measure that is used to determine how hot or cold a particular day has been. It is measured over a period of twenty four hours and takes into account the average (mean) temperature in a location. Most oil heating companies take the mean heating value as 65 degrees Fahrenheit since that is the temperature that most houses can maintain a comfortable temperature.
At Point Bay, we add the high and low temperatures of the day together then divide by two and subtract sixty-five from the quotient. You can find out even more details on our FAQ page.
How Are Degree Days Calculated?
Calculation for degree days is very simple. First, the high and low temperatures of a particular day are determined. Then the mean temperature is calculated by adding the high and the low and dividing by two. This represents the average temperature for the day in question. Then this average temperature is compared to the accepted mean temperature of 65 degrees. The difference between the mean temperature (65°F) and the day’s average equals the amount of degree days. It should be understood that this only counts for average temperatures below 65°F.
What Do Degree Days Mean?
Degree days allow us to see how much the demand for heating oil will be on certain days. If we accept that home oil heating isn’t going to be used on days that are above 65°F, then for each degree less than 65°F, a certain amount of heating oil will be consumed, allowing us to estimate when oil delivery will be necessary to a client. The colder it is, the larger the HDD value will be and the more oil will be consumed which translates into a more urgent need for refilling the tank. The K-factor that was mentioned previously is a rough measure of the usage of oil over time. The K-factor of a tank is determined by using the value for the amount of degree days between deliveries and dividing it by the amount the tank can hold (less the reserve value in case of emergencies). A higher K-factor means that more fuel is utilized.
After topping your tank off 2 or 3 times our technicians at Point Bay can determine your k factor. Once established, your deliveries will be based on your k factor and the number of degree days since your last delivery.
Why These Calculations Are Necessary
In order to keep the supply system running smoothly and efficient, these calculations give the company an edge when trying to estimate when and where heating oil deliveries are required. Some clients burn heating oil faster than others and therefore must have oil delivered more often to their homes. For a secure and reliable heating oil delivery service, talk to a representative of Point Bay Fuel today about our delivery service and our dedication to our clientele.