If you don’t see your question answered here, feel free to contact Falmouth Energy directly. One of our customer service representatives will be in touch with you shortly.
How do I become a Falmouth Energy customer?
You can become a Falmouth Energy customer by contacting us online or calling (508) 548-3200.
Who should I contact if I have questions regarding my account?
Contact Falmouth Energy via email or call (508) 548-3200.
What do I do if I am planning to move?
If you are planning to move, simply contact Falmouth Energy by email or telephone and a customer service representative will walk you through the necessary steps to either relocate or cancel your account.
Billing and Payment
What are my payment options?
Falmouth Energy accepts many forms of payment. Contact us to see how we can accommodate you!
Do you offer budget plans?
Yes. Falmouth Energy customers can sign up for a 12-month budget plan contract that will evenly distribute heating costs into 12 even monthly payments.
Can I pay my bill online?
Yes. Simply visit our Pay Bill page to easily make payments online.
How do I read my tank gauge?
The gauge is located on the top of the tank. It will indicate either with a red float or ticker the current level of your tank.
When should I order oil?
If you are not enrolled in automatic delivery, we recommend that you order oil when your tank reads just above ¼ to avoid a no-fuel emergency.
How can I request service for my heating or A/C equipment?
If you’d like to schedule an installation or request maintenance for your HVAC equipment, you can contact Falmouth Energy online or contact our office at (508) 548-3200.
When should I schedule a tune-up for my heating or cooling system?
Regular maintenance is essential to keep your HVAC equipment operating safely and efficiently. One yearly visit from a Falmouth Energy HVAC specialist can lower energy costs, extend the lifespan of your equipment, and more. We recommend that our customers schedule annual service before or after peak season.
General Fuel Oil Questions
Q: What is home heating oil?
A: Heating oil, known as oil, fuel oil, home heating oil, and HHO, is a low-viscosity liquid petroleum fuel product that is refined and used as a heat source.
Q: Is home heating oil safe?
A: Yes, heating oil is a safe and nonexplosive fuel source. It is fire-resistant because of its high flash point of 140 degrees Fahrenheit. It also produces visible warning signs like smoke if a heating system malfunction were to occur, meaning oil users can benefit from home security.
Q: What are the main uses for heating oil?
A: Heating oil is primarily used for heating and water heating. It can be used in furnaces, boilers, and water heaters that are oil fired.
Q: What is the difference between propane and heating oil?
A: Propane is a stored as a liquid and used as a gas fuel, while oil is stored and used as a liquid fuel. Heating oil has an energy capacity of 139,000 BTUs, compared to 91,502 BTUs for propane. Heating oil provides a higher efficiency, reducing total fuel cost over time. Both oil and propane options are safe, affordable, and abundant in the United States.
Q: How can I monitor my home heating oil levels?
A: The simplest way is to read your oil tank gauge, which is like car’s gas gauge. You should order a refill when your home heating oil tank gauge reaches ¼ capacity. If you’d like to avoid having to do this regularly, contact us to request automatic delivery.
Q: How do you read an oil tank gauge?
A: Read a tank gauge just like your car’s gas gauge: Full, ¾, ½, ¼, and Empty. You can find the small circular glass or plastic gauge on the top or side of your oil tank. Be sure to check it frequently and place an oil order before the bottom of your gauge reaches the 1/4th marker. Or, simplify the process by signing up for our automatic delivery service.
Q: How does the weather affect heating oil usage?
A: The colder the temperatures are, the more heating oil a furnace or boiler will need to provide warmth. During the dead of winter, you will go through oil more quickly than the spring or fall. Other factors can affect heating oil usage too, such as personal heating preference, home size, and furnace or boiler efficiency—that’s why it’s so important to frequently check your oil tank gauge or sign up for automatic oil delivery.
Q: What appliances can I use with heating oil?
A: The most common oil-fired appliances are furnaces, boilers, and water heaters.
Q: What are the advantages of using home heating oil?
A: Heating oil has long-since been recognized as a safe heating fuel, since it is nonexplosive. It’s also affordable, abundant, burns efficiently, and is getting cleaner and cleaner with environmental advancement technologies such as ULS and biodiesel.
Q: How do oil and diesel fuel differ?
A: It is the same product as diesel fuel, but a road tax is not paid on it, meaning it’s dyed red and illegal to use on highways.
Q: How much does heating oil cost?
A: The price varies by location, supply, and demand, but you can check average Massachusetts oil pricing here. To find out today’s low price from Falmouth, just give us a call!
General Heating Service Questions
Q: What types of heating systems are available?
The most common types of whole-home heating units are furnaces and boilers. Furnaces use forced hot air to distribute heat through ductwork in your home. Boilers use hot water or steam to radiate heat through your floor, baseboards, or cast-iron radiators. Electric heat pumps are also available for whole-home heating, seasonal, supplemental, or zoned heating.
Q: Which heating system is best for my home?
When it comes time to replace a heating system, most customers choose to replace it with the same type of heat distribution that they had before. For example, if your boiler needs to be replaced, most people will choose to replace it with a boiler, even if they choose a new fuel option.
For specific details on which type of furnace or boiler you should choose, contact your local HVAC experts at Falmouth to ask for a recommendation based on your home size, location, heating preferences, and fuel type.
Q: What are the different types of water heaters?
The most common types of water heaters are powered by fuel oil, propane, or natural gas, and include:
- Indirect hot water heaters: These use heat from a boiler or furnace to heat water constantly.
- Tankless hot water heaters: These heat water instantaneously as it is required.
- Conventional storage hot water heaters: These heat and store hot water in advance.
Q: How do I keep my furnace or boiler running smoothly?
The best way to keep your furnace or boiler running smoothly is to order fuel regularly, get it regularly maintained by a qualified technician, and keep an eye out for any signs of malfunction including smoke, clanging, or abnormal smells.
Q: What should I do if my heating system malfunctions?
If it simply shuts down, you should give us a call. Falmouth Energy offers 24/7 service for your furnace or boiler, so you can call at any hour if your heat stops working. If you are experiencing an emergency, evacuate the area and call 911. Heating system malfunctions are rare, but possible, and should be handled by a professional.
Q: How can I make the most of my home heating budget?
In the heating world, best practice is to schedule a tune-up for your heating furnace or boiler every year. This will extend the lifespan of your equipment, help you boost efficiency and spend less on fuel, reduce your risk of a breakdown and no-heat emergency, and reduce the amount of stress you’ll feel when the weather gets cold. You can also ask us about seasonal deals and discounts, sign up for a service plan, and look out for sales.
Q: What are BTUs and AFUE?
A BTU is a British Thermal Unit, which represents a small amount of energy. One BTU can be represented by the amount of heat produced by a kitchen match, and is the heat it takes to raise one pound of water one degree Fahrenheit. Efficiency ratings are based on AFUE, or Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency—for each predetermined measurement of fuel used, you’ll get a certain amount of heat output. AFUE measures an HVAC unit’s efficiency in converting fuel to energy. In a perfect world, a new unit would have 100% AFUE, and all of the fuel burned would be directly converted into heated air. In reality, units usually have closer to a 70% AFUE. To be classified as a high-efficiency system, the AFUE must be 90% or higher. The higher your AFUE, the more cost effectiveness your family will enjoy.
Q: How often should I have my furnace or boiler serviced?
You should have a preventative maintenance tune-up performed once a year on your furnace or boiler (and air conditioner, for that matter). This will help your heating system work more efficiently, use up less fuel, last longer, have a lower chance of breaking down, and maintain a manufacturer’s warranty. Our service plans include your annual tune-up along with other discounts and benefits.
Q: What is the average lifespan of a furnace or boiler?
The average furnace or boiler lasts about 20 years when cared for properly. However, the lifespan can vary based on frequency of use, part replacement and maintenance, climate, and other factors. Getting your heating equipment serviced at least once per year is a key to a long lifespan.
Q: What is the average lifespan of a hot water heater?
The average water heater lasts about 10 years, depending on the quality of water passing through your system. It’s important to proactively replace your water heater so you don’t experience a corrosion-based leak or burst, which would be stressful and costly to fix. If your water heater is approaching the 10-year-old mark, you should have it inspected by a member of our team.
Q: Why does my furnace or boiler have a burning smell when I turn it on?
During the off-season, furnaces and boilers can collect dust. When you first turn them on in the fall, the dust will harmlessly burn off, producing the telltale burning smell for a short period of time. If it’s your first time running your furnace or boiler in the fall, don’t sweat it. However, if your furnace or boiler produces a burning smell after its initial startup for the season, give your local HVAC professionals at Falmouth a call and request a safety inspection.
General A/C Service Questions
Q: What types of air conditioning system are available?
The two main types of air conditioners include central A/C and ductless mini-split models. The main difference is right in the name—central A/C requires internal ductwork, whereas ductless mini-split air conditioners do not. Ductless units can attach to any wall, and are popular in garages, finished attics, additions, and other places ductwork does not reach. Some ductless mini-splits can also provide supplementary heating via a heat pump attachment.
Q: Should I use ductless or central air conditioning?
It depends! If your home has a central ducted heating system, a central air conditioning unit would integrate seamlessly with your home and provide invisible cooling. If you don’t have central ductwork, or have areas in your home without it, one or more ductless mini-splits might be the way to go. If you’re still not sure, contact us to talk to an expert.
Q: How can I make the most of my air conditioning budget?
The best way to get affordable air conditioning is to take good care of your equipment. Schedule annual efficiency tune-ups for your air conditioning system, be it central or ductless. Plan to repair it swiftly if it ever stops working. If it’s more than 15 years old, an entire system replacement could save you 30% or more in annual electricity costs.
In addition to annual maintenance, you can make other adjustments to your daily routine to cut cooling costs. These methods include closing window blinds on hot days, sealing any drafts, turning down the A/C at night and while you’re out, planning cold meals for hot days, running your ceiling fans while you’re in the room, and installing a programmable thermostat.
Q: What is a SEER rating?
SEER, or Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating (or Ratio), is a score that’s used to determine how efficient your air conditioner is. Your SEER affects how many watts of electricity your air conditioner will use, and in turn, how high your electricity bill will be. The higher your SEER rating, the more efficient of a system you’re running and the more affordable your cooling will be.
Q: What is an AFUE rating?
AFUE, or Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, is similar to a SEER rating. AFUE measures an HVAC unit’s efficiency in converting fuel to energy, and it’s based on a percentage scale. In a perfect world, a new unit would have 100% AFUE, and all of the fuel burned would be directly converted into cold air. In reality, units usually have closer to a 70% AFUE. To be classified as a high-efficiency system, the AFUE must be 90% or higher. Like a SEER rating, the higher your AFUE, the more cost effectiveness your family will enjoy.
Q: How often should I have my air conditioner serviced?
Experts around the globe recommend that air conditioners have preventative maintenance once per year. This will prevent inefficiency issues, clogs, wear and tear, and other small issues. Contact your favorite local HVAC provider today to schedule your air conditioner’s preventative tune-up and help your unit work efficiently for years to come.
Q: How long does an air conditioner usually last?
Central A/C units tend to last between 12 and 20 years, depending on the level of maintenance the homeowner keeps up with. Ductless mini-splits can last from 15–20 years, depending on the same circumstances as above. It’s important to remember, though, if your A/C is more than 10 years old, it’s likely running at a much lower efficiency than new units. You could save as much as 30% on annual energy costs by upgrading to a new central or ductless air conditioning system.
Q: Why does my air conditioner have water around it?
As air conditioners cool the air in your home, humidity in the air is condensed. This causes previously invisible water particles to gather into drops that can collect around your air conditioning unit. This water is called condensate and is very common. Your A/C system is designed to drain this water to a sump pump or floor drain. If you notice water leaking from the unit, you should call for service as your drain system is not working properly. However, if you have any concerns that your air conditioner is not operating safely, please get in touch with us right away. We’re always happy to help when it comes to the well-being of our customers.