Making the Switch to Bioheat Fuel? Here’s What You Need to Know

Bioheat FuelBioheat fuel is not a new product. However, for some, making the switch to using renewable resources in their home heating is a new trend to consider. This winter, make a change to your home heating oil for a cleaner, greener burn.

What is Bioheat Fuel?

Bioheat fuel is a blend of heating oil and biodiesel. Biodiesel is often made from soybean oil, palm oil, recycled cooking oil or animal fats. Biodiesel works with any type of heating oil. It’s made from camelina, corn, rapeseed, sunflower, coffee, cottonseed, flax, rice, sesame, sunflower, and pumpkin seed. Researchers are currently working on ways to produce biodiesel from algae and other non-food crops.

The ratio of heating oil to biodiesel varies, but is most often combined as B5 (5% biodiesel), B10 (10%), or B20 (20%).

The use of biodiesel not only dramatically reduces carbon emissions, it reduces other harmful pollutants. This includes smog. Removing smog makes our air healthier to breathe. The EPA has determined that this clean-burning fuel reduces greenhouse gas emissions by more than 50 percent when compared to petroleum diesel.

Benefits of Bioheat Fuel

  • Bioheat fuel is extremely clean burning.  A three percent increase (up to 5 percent from a 2 percent biodiesel blend) has a similar effect on a reduction of emissions equivalent to taking 45,000 cars off the road. Take that up to a 20 percent blend and you’re looking at the equivalent of removing more than a quarter of a million cars.
  • Since it incorporates domestically produced biofuel made from renewable crops and food byproducts, sources can replace imported oil.
  • Make the switch and you won’t have to change your payment plan, service contract or warranties. Bioheat fuel costs the same as traditional heating oil. It even warms your home just as well as traditional oil.
  • With virtually no difference in performance, bioheat fuel improves emissions, lubricity, efficiency and cleanliness of combustion when blended at low levels. Bioheat fuel has shown it can reduce equipment maintenance needs.

The Future of Bioheat Fuel

Oil Heat America reports that NORA is working closely with the National Biodiesel Board to increase the percentage of biodiesel in heating fuels. This is to urge state and federal legislatures to require that all heating oil contain a biodiesel component. ASTM International, an organization which sets industry consensus standards for fuels and lubricants, has voted to approve performance specifications up to 20 percent biodiesel (B20). Until this vote, the ASTM only approved the use of B5 or lower blends in standard heating systems.

Heat Your Home with Bioheat Fuel

Close to 12% of homes in New Jersey use oil heat. You can learn how to heat your home with bioheat fuel. Nontoxic, biodegradable, and renewable, advancements in modern home oil heat make bioheat fuel a truly green option for New Jersey homeowners.

Find out more about home heating oil on our FAQ page and contact us for more information.