How to Use Kerosene in Your Home Heating Oil Tank


Kerosene, home heating oil, diesel fuel, K-1, jet fuel and a host of other petroleum-derived fuels, have very similar properties. They are all tailored specifically for the task at hand, whether it is to power a jet engine, run a big rig or heat your house. In a generic sense, however, your furnace doesn't know the difference between any of these types of fuel. In fact, many winter blends of home heating oil are oil and kerosene in a 50/50 mix because kerosene is thinner and therefore flows easier during the coldest days.

Things You'll Need

  • Kerosene--Either K-1 or K-2
  • Fuel oil tank
  • Kerosene container
  • Fill a container with kerosene from any local supplier, or buy it already packaged in a container from your local hardware store.

  • Open up the fuel cap on your home oil tank.

  • Pour the kerosene into the tank, and close the cap. Your furnace will burn it just fine.

Tips & Warnings

  • Kerosene is more expensive than home heating oil and gives off less BTUs of heat; therefore, in a purely practical sense, it does not make any sense to burn it straight in your home heating oil tank. For an emergency or stop-gap measure, it will work just fine, but realistically, for the price, it's better to stick with home heating oil.
  • K-1 kerosene is essentially the filtered kind and is less sulfuric then K-2. K-1 does not need a flue to burn because it gives off very limited sulfur fumes, but you must properly vent your home heating situation when you burn K-2 kerosene, or the results could lead to asphyxiation and death.

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  • Photo Credit Oil lamp on a red wall image by Sergey Skleznev from
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