Do “Clean Fuels” Give Us A Break?

If you have not filed your taxes yet and use heating oil to heat your house in New York state, you may want to look at form IT-241.  New York offers a “Clean Heating Fuel Credit” for up to 20 percent bio-fuel use in the heating oil used to heat your home or business.  If you live in Suffolk County, you most likely have been getting 5% bio-fuel (B5) in your heating oil.  Depending on the ingredients of the bio, the fuel has between 85 and 93 percent of the BTU’s as regular heating oil.  At least one large heating oil dealer is delivering 10 percent bio-fuel (B10) in their fuel oil even though Underwriters Laboratory (UL) has only approved up to B5 for oil burner components.  Below is a sample chart with the tax credit savings of Bio-Heat compared with the extra cost because of its lower BTU content.  Keep in mind that bio-fuels could cause breakdowns due to its increased thickness at lower temperatures; especially if the oil is in an outside tank.

Heating Oil With 10 Percent Bio Vs. Straight Heating Oil

B10 BTU’s per gallon


ULS Heating Oil BTU’s per gallon


Gallons Delivered 2013


Heat Equivalent Gallons


Average Price Paid Per Gallon

$ 4.126

$ 4.126

2013 B10 Heating Oil Cost


Using Conventional Heating Oil


New York IT-241 Clean Fuel Credit

$ 84.87

Savings over 10% Bio Fuel

$ 35.02

Total Heating Oil Cost



Actual Tax Credit Savings

$ 49.85

 Lately, I have been hearing that homeowners who are inquiring about biofuels do not want it delivered to their oil tanks.  Maybe the $50 savings isn’t worth it.


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