As another winter approaches, we are anticipating its arrival and hope that we have a little more normal weather than last year.  The “Winter” of 2011-2012 never seemed to show up.  It’s not that unusual for New England to experience a warm winter month here and there.  What is unusual, is that it happened every month.  Our degree day calculations were consistently 20-22% warmer than a normal winter.  (FYI – The calculations for a heating season begin on September 1st and continue until August 31st.)  On a positive note, this means it was financially beneficial to most of our customers.  When you deduct that percentage from your annual usage, it adds up to a significant savings – You can thank Mother Nature for that one.

Our service and installation departments are busy as always.  We continue to perform annual maintenance on heating systems to make sure they are all running at top efficiency.  We are also upgrading older equipment with new, more efficient oil heating systems.  If you have thoughts of updating your older equipment, please call us now.  With the Mass Save financing program, it is a great time to have it done.  You can download rebate forms from this website and see how much you can save. http://www.nstaronline.com/residential/energy_efficiency/rebate-forms.asp  Please call our service department at 781-834-8831 if you have any questions about rebates and financing on new equipment.

As most of you know, we are already into our 11 month budget payment plan which began  August 1st.   This is a way to spread out your annual fuel costs over 11 months.  If you are not enrolled in this payment plan, please call us and we can provide you with more information and estimate what your monthly payment would be.

Finally, I want to comment on what the Natural Gas industry has been up to, again.  The price for gas versus oil is to their advantage right now.  But, don’t be fooled by the other costs associated with Natural Gas.

  • First, look at the conversion costs and do the math.  You will likely find that the payback period for new equipment is longer than you think.  Average conversion costs are estimated at $6,000 to $8,000 under ideal conditions.  Additional charges will apply if you need a gas line brought to your house, removal and disposal of the oil tank, lining your old chimney, etc…  Also look at the equipment being installed.  A lot of plumbers are happy to sell you the newest equipment, but ask them about servicing it – Make sure they can service what they sell.  Some high efficiency gas boilers have only a 7 year warranty and that’s only good if you have documentation that they are maintained properly every year.  All of the equipment we sell has limited lifetime warranties for the original owner.  Our newest oil heating equipment burns as clean as any new gas appliance and is competitive with efficiency ratings as well.
  • Second, look at what the gas industry as a whole has done for you and your community.  Your local oil company employs local people.  Thousands of hard working Massachusetts residents make their living in the oil business.  We are the people you see around town, at school functions and at local fundraising and charity events.  We are the people that are providing financial support to your community through donations and sponsorships.  We are the ones volunteering for local activities and events.  You can be assured that Rand-Handy Oil Company will continue to support the local communities we serve, just like we have done for over 60 years.

You can look back at my blog from Fall 2011 for more information on what the gas industry is doing for you.

Finally, thank you all for your business.  We have been fortunate to serve you and your neighbors for decades, and we look forward to continuing that role as your home comfort provider for years to come.

Sincerely, Kyle

WINTER 2011-2012


As I write this on December 22, it is a balmy 53 degrees in Marshfield.  The low temperature today is expected to be around 40 degrees.  Needless to say, the Winter has not started out with any great strength.  From the beginning of the heating season, September 1, 2011, the degree day numbers are about 21% off normal.  That means the average temperature between 9/1/11 and now, has been about 21% warmer than normal.  What this means for you, our customers, is that your usage will reflect the same percentage in oil consumption- all other factors remaining the same.

We recently celebrated the Holidays here at Rand-Handy with a bowling party for all employees and families.  What a great night!  Turns out we have quite a few good bowlers in the group- me not included.  There was even some talk of a bowling league, but we shall see about that.  A thank you for all of the hard work that Rand-Handy employees do to keep you and your family comfortable, year round. 

Our annual coloring contest was a lot of fun again this year also.  We had several kids submit their artwork for show in our office.  10 winners were chosen from various age groups and all of them received a prize.  We also donated $20 in each of their names to the Marshfield Community Christmas. http://www.marshfieldcommunitychristmas.com  -One of several organizations we are happy to support.  Thanks to all who participated this year and be sure to look for it again next year.

Finally, I would like to take a moment to thank you all for your continued patronage.  We are all fortunate to have customers like you to service year after year.  We know you have choices, and we thank you for choosing us.  Best wishes to you and yours over the holidays, and for a happy and healthy new year.

Sincerely,  Kyle

Fall is here once again and winter is soon to follow.  It proved to be another great summer with only a couple short heat waves.  We have seen many of you over the summer with air-conditioning service, and we thank you for your business.  It is another service that we offer to keep you and your home comfortable.

With the colder weather comes an increase in Degree Days.  Our heating degree day season starts on September 1st.  We are off to a warmer than normal start to the season with the end of September and Columbus day weekend being like mid-summer days.  This years forecast from the Farmers Almanac is for warmer than normal temperatures through the coming winter with wet and stormy conditions.  We will have to wait and see.

Our monthly payment plan, or Budget Plan, began August 1st.  Most of you take advantage of this payment method, but for those who don’t, it is an easy way to help spread out the bills during the winter months when your fuel consumption is greater.  Please call us if you would like more information on this and we can estimate a monthly amount for your home.


I feel the need to comment on the advertising “explosion” that the Natural Gas industry has blasted across the Northeast.  National Grid, the area’s largest gas provider, has been running a campaign to smear the reputation of oilheat in an effort to get customers to convert.  Much of their advertising has been deceptive by stating incorrect facts about oilheat, and the hundreds of small businesses in the area that provide the service for almost 1 million homes across the state.  What they don’t say is more important to us and it should be to you:

  • They don’t say how they spend rate payers’ (their customers) money to run this campaign in an effort to shut down the oil dealers’ small businesses who employ thousands of hard working people in Massachusetts.
  • They don’t say that while they are spending over $700,000 in advertising for this campaign, there are an estimated 30,000 natural gas leaks all across the state that they are aware of and are not repairing.  Many of these known leaks are serious and put local residents and businesses in danger, and nothing is being done about it.  My feeling is that this industry could better spend their money upgrading the aging infrastructure of natural gas lines where you and I live and make us all a little safer. ( I know of one leak on a street very close to mine, and I smell it every time I go out for a jog)
  • They don’t say that all of these gas leaks put off a methane gas which is a greenhouse gas and is more harmful to the environment and ozone layer than anything an oilheated system could produce.  This gas is known to kill trees and vegetations by the hundreds of thousands and one large city near Boston, currently has a lawsuit against the gas industry making those claims. 
  • They don’t talk about gas explosions and the deaths that they cause every year.  You can read more about that on this website http://www.naturalgaswatch.org/


Presently, the cost of Natural Gas is less than oil to heat your home. This has not always been the case and it is not as great as it sounds either.  Natural Gas is measured in therms, and heating oil in gallons.  However, one gallon of heating oil will provide 25% more btu output than 1 therm of gas.  Be sure to get all the numbers before making any decisions on Natural Gas conversions.  There are many hidden costs such as lining your chimney, paying to have a gas line run, and removal and disposal of your oil tank.  Modern Oilheat systems are highly efficient and compete with those fueled by Natural Gas.  For more information, you can visit The American Energy Coalition website at http://www.americanenergycoalition.org/index.php.  Or visit The Massachusetts Oilheat Council, representing oilheat and its dealers throughout the commonwealth. http://www.massoilheat.org/

 As always, we appreciate the confidence you place in us as your oil and service provider.  We know you have choices and we thank you for choosing us. 

Thank you for your business and see you around town.

-Kyle

Fall is here and it is time to prepare for the coming Winter. The Almanac is calling for a cold and snowy one. We had some extreme heat this summer and if the Winter proves to be the same, it will be long and cold. We are well prepared and ready to take care of all of you. The heating degree-day season begins for us on September 1. As of mid-November, the accumulated heating degree-days is about 10% lower than a normal year. This means we have had more, warmer than average days in the season thus far. The long range forecast, however, looks to be headed in the other direction. It’s difficult for the experts to predict too far in advance, so we will see what comes our way.

Our 11 month budget season is well underway and it seems that most of you like spreading out your payments that way. The plan started on August 1st, but for any of you who are not on this plan and would like more information, please call us and we can estimate what your monthly payment would be for the remainder of the budget season. We can start the plan for you at any time and spread out the payments over the remaining months of the season.

We had talked last year about the mandate for the use of Bio-Fuel in the state of Massachusetts. The state has again extended the deadline for the compliance into 2011. It was our plan to offer the fuel to you starting this winter. Because of the mandate postponement, many of our suppliers have held off in bringing the product to their facilities. We will continue to monitor this and will offer the fuel to you when the quality and quantity is in good supply. Until then, we will continue to provide you with our high quality heating oil that we store in our own facility here in Marshfield.

On an unrelated topic, I feel the need to comment on the Security Screening process at our airports. As you know, Boston was one of the first to start using the full body screening at its security gates. It seems there are several unhappy flyers who don’t feel they should be submitted to those screenings or be subject to a “pat-down”. With current events what they are today, I don’t see what the problem is. I feel a lot more comfortable knowing that the employees of the TSA are taking the time to do their jobs right and not risk my safety or that of all my family and friends. Yes, it may take a little longer to get to where you are going, but you can feel safer doing so. For those who don’t like it, take a bus or a train or even drive yourself to your destination – You have that choice.

Thank you for all of your business. We appreciate the confidence you place in us and we will continue to be there for you.

See you around town.

-Kyle