If you heat your home with heating oil and have been paying for a full service oil supplier almost all your life, it is more than likely that it’s going to be tempting when you hear a colleague telling you about a fantastic deal he’s making use of at home; heating oil for a low, discounted price. Upon hearing of this so-called “discounted oil”, a number of questions start flying around in your head. Namely, “Why am I paying full-price for the same oil that serves exactly the same purpose?” or “Have I been wasting hundreds of dollars every month for the last ten years?” And these are both very understandable questions. After all, if you saw two pairs of the same shoes, in two different stores, but one pair was on sale, which pair would you go for? This is exactly the point being made. It sounds like the same thing, doesn’t it? Only, it can’t be that simple; there has to be a catch. Before you run home and get involved with the discounter, it might be wise to consider just a few things.
Countless Additional Services
First of all, ask yourself whether or not you fully understand what a full price and full service oil supplier really does. You might find that it’s more than initially thought. In most cases, full-service means a lot more than the simple sale of oil. Alongside the obvious, full price services come with a wide variety of perks — automatic deliveries, emergency service, budget planning, the maintenance of equipment, installation of new, updated equipment and much more. When contrasted with discount oil providers, this seems like a lot, and the extra money starts to make just a little bit more sense. While discount oil companies are all for the cheaper oil, they more or less leave it at that — which basically means no additional services, zero responsibility, a lack of comfort and a great deal more stress.
Heating Equipment Repair and Replacement
A big part of the final decision comes down to heating equipment repair. When something stops working, the general population can’t do a thing without at least a little professional help. But what happens when you rely on a discount supplier? Well, from personal experience, it should be said that most discounters offer next to nothing in terms of additional services — and that includes equipment repairs and maintenance. A lot of the time, the select few additional services they do provide come from elsewhere as they oftentimes rely on other companies. But what good is calling a variety of different, somewhat questionable companies in a panic, just to be told to wait until the morning? At the same time, discount suppliers will often employ 1 or 2 questionably qualified technicians just to say they’re offering more services. But this simply doesn’t make sense. Compare this to most full-service suppliers: You’ll usually have round-the-clock access to a number of fully-certified technicians who operate 24/7. While this offers an unbelievable peace of mind, you can almost always rest assured that these suppliers will also be equipped with service vehicles, giving the client a maximum of two hours response time. Just imagine the security that this provides you with, the sleep-filled nights and the convenience.
Difference in Payment Options
Okay, so repair and maintenance out of the way. What else is there to say? Payment options… if you really want to establish what the better option is, it is always a good idea to call payment options into question. When it comes to full-price suppliers, you’ll have a myriad of different options presented to you; a range of different ways that you can pay. These options range from check payments, credit card payments, cash payments, budget plan payments, or you could simply request to pay the total within a full-month using whichever method you feel most comfortable with. This is always an enormous weight off your shoulders. Saying this, most discount suppliers like to take advantage of their lower priced oil by limiting options and expecting to get away with it. For this reason, they will often request that you supply them with the payment you owe them at the time of delivery. In most cases, you will need to have the sum of money specified right there in your hands. Of course, you can always take the risk of settling with a discounter, just to see for yourself — but the chances are you’re going to be very bitter about it in the months to come.
In the end, it usually comes down to a company’s reputation. What does this mean when asking an important question such as this one? Well, for the most part, the companies that have succeeded in garnishing a notable and trustworthy reputation are the ones with years and years of experience and a consistently stable financial situation. For the most part, it is the companies that provide the services that their clients really need that stay afloat in the long run. If you’re company has a good reputation, you know it’s done enough to stay ahead of its competition. In the same way that you might ask friends and family members to recommend a plumber that they trust, you should always seek a company with a good reputation. If a supplier guarantees you full-service for the full price, you need to know that it isn’t going to fall short. Can you imagine if you’ve settled with a discount oil supplier, only to find out that it has suddenly gone bust, or gone out of business? This is the service you are relying on to keep you warm… It needs to be stable and consistently reliable. Click here to learn how to find a good heating oil company.
The Service Agreement
But how to know if the full-price supplier you settle with is the real deal? The company of choice should always be willing to offer you what is legally known as a “service agreement”. This agreement is what guarantees the client oil on an automatic basis, combined with full-service to all heating equipment for an agreed-on period of time — whether for a month or a full-year. The only promise that the consumer is obliged to keep is that it will rely solely on that one company for its heating oil services. Only this way can the official agreement be maintained — and if the company you choose is up to scratch, this makes for a very good deal on your part, doesn’t it? All in all, these agreements encompass a whole range of services that you wouldn’t otherwise get by paying for the services of the discounter counterpart, including emergency service (absolutely vital), replacement of parts and an annual tune-up. Replaced parts available from companies offering a service agreement are far-reaching. They will usually include boilers, hot water heaters, furnaces and burners.