Diesel fuel for oil furnace?

hrajotteJanuary 5, 2012

My neighbor totalled his pickup truck, and is going to junk it. The truck has almost a full tank of diesel (about 28 gallons.) He asked me if I want the diesel (free!) for my #2 oil fired furnace. (He has gas heat.) He claims #2 oil and diesel are virtually the same, and I have always believed that, too. But I wanted to get other advice first!

Will diesel wreck my oil burner??

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It's a 5 year-old Beckett oil burner with a 0.75 nozzle, if that matters.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2012 at 10:44AM
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what part of the country are you in? Does your oil burner create forced air heat? I bet its expensive heating with oil. If you have forced air, you should get an air sourced heatpump to handle the majority of your heating needs. The upfront cost will quickly be paid for by the oil savings.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2012 at 11:31AM
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Maybe the OP does have a heat pump... oil for backup. (That's the setup I have with no gas available and electric rate out of sight.)

Have to wonder if anyone knows the answer to his actual question.

This retired Navy Submariner loves the memories associated with diesel fumes and would not miss the opportunity to be present when the oil furnace is serviced. My nose tells me that #2 Heating oil is the same as diesel... just the color is not right. Again, however, I do not know the answer to hrajotte's question. :-)

    Bookmark   January 5, 2012 at 12:03PM
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Your furnace will love the Diesel fuel.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2012 at 12:06PM
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Fuel oil is not taxed. It is usually dyed red so that if it is used in an automobile/truck it will show up and the driver fined for using an untaxed fuel.

Some years ago they were different in that fuel oil was not low sulpher. But I think today that all suppliers provide the same ULS product for both fuel oil and vehicles.

The one thing that might be different is winterization. Around here, starting Nov 1 kerosene is mixed with road diesel to prevent freezing at low temperatures. It should still burn just fine with the fuel oil you have.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2012 at 4:12PM
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Yes, it is hot air, and yes, #2 is pushing $3.75 a gallon here in Massachusetts. Fortunately, we only have to turn it up late afternoon and early evening, as nobody is home during the day so we keep it around 55 degrees. Likewise at night, because the wife has about 6 blankets on the bed. We only use 300 to 400 gallons a year.
I figured diesel would be OK because I have seen heating oil being pumped into off-road construction equipment, such as excavators, at work sites.
Thanks all, we'll be pumping it in this weekend.
I agree with the Navy man, love the smell!!!

    Bookmark   January 5, 2012 at 5:05PM
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