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

Homeowners have a variety of home heating fuels to choose from. Electricity is the most popular choice in Chesterfield County, used by 1,887,993 or 56.72% of homes. The 2nd most popular choice for Chesterfield County homeowners is natural gas, used by 1,101,616 homes (33.09%). The remaining homes are heated with propane (153,698), heating oil (129,907), wood (65,453), and other fuels (41,045).

Chesterfield County Primary Home Heating Fuel Popularity by Number of Households

FuelChesterfield County Households % of Households
Natural Gas1.1M33.09%
Heating Oil129,9073.90%
No Fuel24,3140.73%
Other Fuels12,4890.38%

Electricity (56.72)

Natural gas (33.09)

Propane (4.62)

Heating oil (3.90)

Wood (1.97)

No fuel (0.73)

Other fuels (0.38)

Solar (0.08)

Coal (0.04)

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

Heating oil has become less popular in Chesterfield County. In the 11 years since 2011, the number of heating oil homes fell from 228,988 to 129,907, a 43.27% drop.

Chesterfield County Heating Oil Households (2011 - 2022)

YearHeating Oil Households

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

Between 2011 and today, the number of homes using propane as the primary space heating fuel rose from 140,879 to 153,698.

Between 2011 and today, the number of homes using natural gas as the primary space heating fuel rose from 1,031,157 to 1,101,616.

Electricity use for home heating in Chesterfield County

Electric space heating systems are becoming more popular in Chesterfield County. Since 2011, the number of homes heating with electricity rose from 1,490,462 to 1,887,993, a 26.67% increase.

Solar use for home heating in Chesterfield 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, 2,751 homes in Chesterfield County are heated with active solar arrays. This is a 518.20% increase from 2011, when only 445 homes had installed active solar heating.

Chesterfield County Heating Oil Trends

Last year, Chesterfield County homeowners purchased a total of 5 million gallons of heating oil.

Short Term Trends

Chesterfield County’s overall heating oil use varies from year to year, primarily depending on how cold each winter is. As the temperature outside gets colder, homes’ heating systems need to burn more and more oil to keep homes warm. Last winter in Chesterfield County, the average outside temperature was 4.3° F warmer than the prior winter's average outside temperature.

Chesterfield County Average Winter Temperature

Heating SeasonAverage Temperature
Winter 2022 - 202348° F
Winter 2021 - 202243.7° F

Chesterfield County Homeowner’s Guide to Selecting an Oil Company

For Chesterfield County homeowners heating with oil, selecting which of the 28 heating oil companies that serve Chesterfield County 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 4 “full-service” oil companies that serve Chesterfield County. Full service companies such as Hungerford Heating & Cooling or Hungerford Heating & Cooling 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 Chesterfield County 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 Chesterfield County include Hanover Air Systems and Blazer Heating, Air, & Plumbing.

Chesterfield County Heating Oil Company Fast Facts

Heating Oil Companies Serving Chesterfield County: 28 companies

Average Number Of Chesterfield County Homes Served Per Company: 314 homes

Average Gallons Delivered per Chesterfield County Oil Company: 190,233 gallons per year

Chesterfield County Heating Oil Delivery Overview

8,819 households in Chesterfield County heat their homes with fuel oil. This makes oil delivery essential when Chesterfield County thermometers drop as low as 42.5° F each winter.

3% of Chesterfield County Households Rely On Heating Oil Delivery Each Winter

Chesterfield County HouseholdsChesterfield County Heating Oil Households

89 Chesterfield County Oil Companies Go the Distance

With 5 million gallons of heating oil delivered to Chesterfield County homeowners during the winter of 2023, the Chesterfield County community relies on its 89 oil companies to keep warm.

Oil delivery is a two step process: First, an oil truck picks up oil at the nearest bulk fuel terminal. In the case of Chesterfield County, two of the closest terminals are 1st Enrgy in Richmond, VA and Kinder-m2 in Richmond, VA. Then, the truck delivers the #2 heating oil to homes and businesses in Chesterfield County.

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