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Propane vs. Natural Gas vs. Heating Oil: Central Maine Home Heating Fuel Comparison

Homeowners have a variety of home heating fuels to choose from. Heating oil is the most popular choice in Central Maine, used by 46,614 or 64.10% of homes. The 2nd most popular choice for Central Maine homeowners is wood, used by 9,189 homes (12.64%). The remaining homes are heated with propane (8,300), electricity (6,098), natural gas (2,716), and other fuels (1,408).

Central Maine Primary Home Heating Fuel Popularity by Number of Households

FuelCentral Maine Households % of Households
Heating Oil46,61464.10%
Wood9,18912.64%
Propane8,30011.41%
Electricity6,0988.39%
Natural Gas2,7163.73%
Other Fuels9871.36%
Solar2580.35%
No Fuel1460.20%
Coal170.02%

Heating oil (64.10)

Wood (12.64)

Propane (11.41)

Electricity (8.39)

Natural gas (3.73)

Other fuels (1.36)

Solar (0.35)

No fuel (0.20)

Coal (0.02)

#2 Heating Oil (Fuel Oil) Use in Central Maine

Heating oil has become less popular in Central Maine. In the 6 years since 2016, the number of heating oil homes fell from 46,754 to 46,614, a 0.30% drop.

Central Maine Heating Oil Households (2011 - 2022)

YearHeating Oil Households
201154,209
201252,966
201351,276
201450,086
201548,841
201646,754
201746,122
201846,332
201946,680
202047,234
202146,637
202246,614

Propane vs. Natural Gas use for home heating in Central Maine

Between 2016 and today, the number of homes using propane as the primary space heating fuel rose from 5,202 to 8,300.

Between 2016 and today, the number of homes using natural gas as the primary space heating fuel rose from 1,123 to 2,716.

Electricity use for home heating in Central Maine

Electric space heating systems are becoming more popular in Central Maine. Since 2016, the number of homes heating with electricity rose from 2,833 to 6,098, a 115.25% increase.

Solar use for home heating in Central Maine

Solar is the most environmentally friendly of all space heating fuels. With an “active” solar heating system, liquid is circulated between solar panels on a home’s roof and a heat energy storage tank in the basement.

Currently, 258 homes in Central Maine are heated with active solar arrays. This is a 597.30% increase from 2016, when only 37 homes had installed active solar heating.

Central Maine Heating Oil Trends

Short Term Trends

Heating SeasonAverage Temperature
Winter 2022 - 202337.1° F
Winter 2021 - 202221.4° F

Central Maine Homeowner’s Guide to Selecting an Oil Company

For Central Maine homeowners heating with oil, selecting which of the 39 heating oil companies that serve Central Maine is an important decision.

Full Service Oil Companies: Homeowners willing to pay a premium for a “set-it-and-forget-it” heating system choose one of the 3 “full-service” oil companies that serve Central Maine. Full service companies such as Ness Oil Company or Ness Oil Company offer automatic fuel delivery and furnace repair under a single roof.

Discount Oil Companies: Also known by the names “COD Fuel Companies” or “Cash Heating Oil Companies”, these companies are for the budget-conscious Central Maine homeowner. In return for better prices, you monitor the oil level in your tank and place an order when you run low on oil. Examples of cash heating oil companies that serve Central Maine include Litchfield Fuel Co and O'Farrell Energy.

Central Maine Heating Oil Company Fast Facts

Heating Oil Companies Serving Central Maine: 39 companies

Average Number Of Central Maine Homes Served Per Company: 1,195 homes

More Central Maine HVAC Resources