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Propane vs. Natural Gas vs. Heating Oil: Merrimack County Home Heating Fuel Comparison

Homeowners have a variety of home heating fuels to choose from. Heating oil is the most popular choice in Merrimack County, used by 224,725 or 41.34% of homes. The 2nd most popular choice for Merrimack County homeowners is natural gas, used by 117,536 homes (21.62%). The remaining homes are heated with propane (100,624), electricity (57,780), wood (35,074), and other fuels (16,939).

Merrimack County Primary Home Heating Fuel Popularity by Number of Households

FuelMerrimack County Households % of Households
Heating Oil224,72541.34%
Natural Gas117,53621.62%
Propane100,62418.51%
Electricity57,78010.63%
Wood35,0746.45%
Other Fuels10,3551.90%
No Fuel5,2720.97%
Solar6900.13%
Coal6220.11%

Heating oil (41.34)

Natural gas (21.62)

Propane (18.51)

Electricity (10.63)

Wood (6.45)

Other fuels (1.90)

No fuel (0.97)

Solar (0.13)

Coal (0.11)

#2 Heating Oil (Fuel Oil) Use in Merrimack County

Heating oil has become less popular in Merrimack County. In the 2 years since 2020, the number of heating oil homes fell from 232,901 to 224,725, a 3.51% drop.

Merrimack County Heating Oil Households (2011 - 2022)

YearHeating Oil Households
2011262,755
2012257,827
2013251,497
2014245,025
2015241,293
2016236,690
2017234,647
2018233,209
2019233,052
2020232,901
2021228,197
2022224,725

Propane vs. Natural Gas use for home heating in Merrimack County

Between 2020 and today, the number of homes using propane as the primary space heating fuel rose from 91,078 to 100,624.

Between 2020 and today, the number of homes using natural gas as the primary space heating fuel rose from 111,034 to 117,536.

Electricity use for home heating in Merrimack County

Electric space heating systems are becoming more popular in Merrimack County. Since 2020, the number of homes heating with electricity rose from 53,539 to 57,780, a 7.92% increase.

Solar use for home heating in Merrimack County

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, 690 homes in Merrimack County are heated with active solar arrays. This is a 6.63% decrease from 2020, when only 739 homes had installed active solar heating.