It’s that time of year when the cold weather is setting in, and we can’t wait to snuggle up next to a warm fire. However, before you get too comfortable, have you thought about whether your heating oil system is ready for the winter ahead? Failing to prepare your system for the cold could leave you freezing, both literally and financially. To help out, we have compiled a list of tips to help you ensure your heating oil system is winter-ready in the UK.

Tips for Keeping Your Heating Oil System Running in Winter

Insulate Fuel Lines and Your Home

One of the essential things to consider when getting your heating oil system winter-ready is insulation. Ideally, take advantage of the warmer months before to insulate your fuel lines and supply system to help prevent it from freezing. Insulating your home correctly will also help keep the heat inside and save you money in the long term. Additionally, burying fuel lines underground will help prevent them from freezing in extremely cold weather. It’s a small investment, but it’s worth the effort.

Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance of your heating oil system is vital if you want to avoid costly repairs in the future. Checking your oil levels and servicing your system annually will help you keep everything running smoothly. Over time, sludge can build up in your heating oil tank, causing clogs and inefficiencies, resulting in your system operating below its optimal capacity. Sludge is formed from the sediment and impurities in heating oil that settles at the bottom of the tank. So, as part of your regular maintenance, consider scheduling a professional tank cleaning service to remove this sludge and keep your heating oil flowing smoothly. Regular cleaning prevents sludge from accumulating and ensures your system operates efficiently throughout the cold winter months.

The Tank Sponge Eco can help to reduce the build-up of tank sludge, you can order yours online here.

Professional Tank Health Checks

To ensure there aren’t any problems you might not have noticed, you should have a professional carry out tank health checks and servicing. You never know when an issue might occur, and prevention is always better than cure. Over time, freezing and warming weather can cause cracks in metalwork, which may be directly on the tank or the supporting framework. Tanks can also corrode through age, leading to costly and environmentally damaging leaks. A professional can identify and repair these issues before they become major problems.

An OFTEC Boiler Service includes a tank health check, you can find your nearest OFTEC engineer here.

Increase Efficiency

You can increase your heating oil system’s efficiency by reducing the temperature, adjusting your radiator thermostat correctly, and adding fuel additives to your tank. Adding fuel additives helps improve the oil’s quality, preventing it from thickening and blocking your system. These small changes can help you save on your heating bills and stop your system from clogging up. Insulating your home reduces the demand on your heating system and reduces the fuel you need during the colder months.

Our Boiler Extra and Cooker Extra additives can be added to your fuel when you top up your tank, find out more here.

Checking After Snowfall

When there’s been a particularly heavy frost or snowfall, you should take the time to check your heating system and oil tank. Heavy snow can cause damage, so dig out any pipes or vents that may be buried to ensure your system is getting adequate air supply. Additionally, clear any snow that may have accumulated on top of your oil tank, as it can cause damage or blockages. Ideally, house your heating oil tank in a shelter to provide that extra protection from the elements.


In short, to ensure your heating oil system is winter-ready, these simple steps will help keep your system running smoothly throughout the colder months and save you money in the long run. Don’t wait until it’s too late; start preparing your heating oil system now for a warm and comfortable winter.