Different types of heating: The pros and cons

February 24th, 2014

Whether you are building a new home, renovating an old one or reviewing an existing heating system, it’s important to understand all of your options. Different home heating systems are available to you depending on the location of your property and your preference.

Heating oil

  • Domestic heating oil (kerosene) is available to properties that don’t have access to the mains gas grid, more often than not the houses are located in rural parts of the country.
  • The oil is purchased through a supplier and delivered via road and delivered into a tank which is located on the property.

Oil tank flow

Advantages of using oil:

  • You have the option of when to order your fuel delivery. Typically, the price of oil is cheaper in the summer and more expensive in the winter, depending on demand. Therefore oil users could choose to fill their tank in the summer when the price is at its lowest. However, this is not always the case.
  • Some suppliers offer a top up scheme, where they will schedule your deliveries for you to ensure you never run out.
  • The tank does not need to be bought or rented from the supplier.

Disadvantages of using oil:

  • Can be expensive- The price fluctuates from day to day depending on global demand.
  • As a fossil fuel, Kerosene cannot be classed as a ‘green’ form of energy. Oil emits around 4-5 tonnes of carbon dioxide every year from the average UK household.


  • LPG (liquid petroleum gas) is also available to households that are not connected to the mains gas grid. It is delivered in the same way as oil but the tank in which it is stored can be underground or above.

garden Energy Green

Advantage of using LPG

  • LPG is a clean burning fuel, although isn’t ‘green’ it produced less carbon emissions than other home heating systems. It produced 33% less carbon dioxide than coal and 15% less than oil.
  • In the event of a spill LPG won’t cause contamination to water or the environment.
  • The tank can be stored underground so it is hidden from sight.

Disadvantages of using LPG

  • The tank has to be rented off your supplier
  • The LPG tank and all appliances need to be serviced annually by a gas safe engineer
  • The cost of gas can be expensive

Gas central heating

  • Most households in the UK have access mains gas. It is delivered to households across the UK via underground pipes.

Advantage of gas central heating

  • It’s convenient
  • Cost effective
  • Easily controlled with a thermostat

Disadvantages of gas central heating

  • Installing a gas central heating system from scratch is expensive and disruptive.
  • It isn’t a ‘green’ source of energy as it produces carbon dioxide when burned.

Electric central heating

  • Electric heating is another option for those who can’t access mains gas.

Advantages of electric heating

  • Cheap to install
  • Convenient
  • They don’t require pipework and are cheap to repair
  • Available nationwide

Disadvantages of electric heating

  • Expensive compared to other home heating options. Electric costs approximately three times the price of gas per kWh.

Renewable energy

  • Renewable energy is fast becoming a popular choice for home heating. With energy prices on the rise and the government putting pressure on businesses especially to cut down on their carbon emissions, more and more people are opting for green sources of energy.
  • Renewable energy includes the use of solar panels, heat pumps and biomass boilers.

Advantages of renewable energy

  • Good for the environment- produces no carbon emissions
  • It’s a completely independent source of energy
  • Price will not be subject to global demand

biomass wood chips

Disadvantages of renewable energy

  • Not the most reliable of energy sources
  • Difficult to predict how much energy will be generated, especially with solar panels.
  • Installation costs can be expensive

What our clients are saying

We have just had a delivery this morning. The driver is new and I just wanted you to know how efficient he was and very friendly. He told us about your new vehicle which will be able to access hard to reach properties if the weather is bad and the big tankers cannot get access. Mr S
We had an exceptionally busy period at the pub in summer and ran out of gas from a delivery which would normally have lasted much longer. I rang Northern Energy mid-morning when we discovered our situation and they delivered within 20 minutes! We were all very impressed by the speed and helpfulness of the service which got us out of a potentially very difficult situation. Lunch service went on as normal in our pub.
Thank you, Northern Energy!
Mrs R - Publican
Excellent service , easy to order with polite efficient sales staff. Delivery drivers friendly and reliable, very impressed with all round customer service.  Mrs J
Your telephone is answered quickly and in a friendly manner followed up with call/message of delivery date. Mrs B
My husband and I are very pleased with your overall service and have recommended your service to other people round about. We rate you 10. Many thanks Mrs B
Yes I would recommend you, I score 10. The 'PPP' keeps my tank topped up, no VAT to pay. A very good efficient firm with nice friendly delivery men. Thank you Mr W
Been with you now since 2005 would recommend you to anyone Mr W
Always good service from ring (a day before) to say delivery is on it's way to the tank being filled up, thanks guys! Mr T
Last year I recommended you to my neighbour and he is equally happy with your service. Mrs S
I have just recommended your company to a friend who's just moved into a new home and uses oil. I have given you 10 in ratings. Mr M
We find the whole service really easy & efficient Mrs M
We are new customers, but the one delivery we have had came on time. The driver was very friendly and quick with no mess. Very pleased and no need to go elsewhere! Mrs D
I have always been very happy with the service I've recieved from Northern Energy and in fact have got you 2 more customers in the village. The delivery men are always courteous and I think that goes a long way! Northern Energy get a five star rating from me. Mr C
I am pleased with your automatic top-up system. It saves me worrying about running out and presumably saves you money if you can top up a group of neighbouring customers in one delivery - so win-win. Mr D
We have been very impressed with the service received from Northern Energy. The team are always very friendly and always willing to help in any which way they can. If we are cancelling a delivery there are never any questions asked. Recently we had a new oil tank fitted and the oil was delivered within two days of being ordered (we had allowed up to 5 days). Mr K
As a customer I love the all inclusive package of oil and maintenance that you offer. As a second home owner, we never run out of oil like we do ‘at home’ because you keep us ‘topped up’. Mr C

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