Free Home Heating Oil Assistance Programs

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Home heating oil can be a significant expense and financial burden for many families, especially during cold winters. Fortunately, various assistance programs are available to help you save on your heating oil and heating bills.  The need is real; approximately 4.96 million American homes relied on heating oil during the 2022–2023 winter season, with a significant concentration (82%) in the Northeast region.

We will provide information on these programs, eligibility criteria, and application procedures, ensuring you can access the support you need to keep your home warm without compromising your safety.  

During the winter of 2022–2023, about 4.96 million American homes depended on heating oil, with 82% of these homes located in the Northeast. This article will guide you through the available programs, detailing eligibility requirements and application processes to ensure you receive the necessary support to maintain a warm and safe home.  Below, you will find government, charity, and private programs that help pay heating oil bills,

Free Home Heating Oil Assistance Programs

LIHEAP Program

The Low Income Heating Assistance Program, a government initiative, assists eligible low-income families and renters with home heating costs. It includes weatherization assistance to improve energy efficiency and thereby reduce energy expenses. LIHEAP emphasizes safe, healthy living and provides crisis funds for families at immediate risk of losing heat. Benefits are applied directly to your electric or fuel bill in a single payment.


This program provides free heating oil to qualifying residents in need. Citizens Energy collaborates with numerous oil heat dealers and local fuel assistance agencies across 25 states in partnership with CITGO Petroleum. To apply or inquire, call  (877) 563-4645. Availability is based on funding.

Connecticut Energy Assistance Programs

The Connecticut Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) aids struggling households with heating bills, offering fuel and financial assistance. Eligibility is based on a gross yearly family income at or below 200% of the federal poverty guidelines.

CEAP Program

The Connecticut Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) assists Connecticut residents in paying for heating their homes.  The amount of help you receive towards your heating expenses ranges from $180 to $530, and it depends on factors such as your income, the size of your household, and whether there are vulnerable individuals living with you. Typically, these benefits go directly to your utility company or fuel supplier.  

  • How to Apply – CEAP recipients could also be eligible for matching payment plans, protection from having their heating shut off, and assistance with replacing or repairing heating equipment. Apply here.

Community Renewal Team Inc.
555 Windsor Street, Hartford, CT 06120

Visit their website

Heat USA

As the U.S.’s largest heating oil buying group, Heat USA negotiates lower prices, offering cost-effective and sometimes accessible contracts. Benefits include free annual tune-ups, savings on heating oil, and 24-hour emergency services. Call  (888-)432-8872 for more information.


Persons in the family/household Gross Family Income
1 $14,580
2 $19,720
3 $24,860
4 $30,000
5 $35,140
6 $40,280
7 $45,420
8 $50,560
For families/households with more than 8 persons, add $5,140 for each additional person.

New York Heating Oil Programs and Assistance

For residents in New York, several programs offer low-cost or free heating oil:

  • Citizen Action Fuel Group (CAFG), a non-profit fuel buying group sponsored by Citizen Action of New York, offers lower fuel prices. Call (800) 559-4645 for details.
  • LIHEAP and the Urban Homesteading Assistance Board’s Oil Assistance Program provide up to 100 gallons of free heating oil to eligible residents. Contact them at (212) 479-3333.

Applying for LIHEAP Assistance

The application process for home heating oil assistance varies by location and program. General steps include identifying local programs, checking eligibility, gathering necessary documentation, completing and submitting the application, and awaiting approval. Assistance may come in direct payments, vouchers, or rebates.

Additional Resources  

  • National Energy Assistance Referral (NEAR) Project: Call (866)674-6327  or email for LIHEAP application information.
  • The Department of Energy (DOE) for resources on energy efficiency.
  • Non-profit organizations like the Salvation Army for emergency assistance.
  • State and Local Government Websites for specific regional programs.

How to Apply for Help from LIHEAP?

Applying for home heating oil assistance varies depending on your location and the specific programs available. However, I can guide you through a general process:

  1. Identify Local Assistance Programs: Search for heating oil assistance programs in your area. In the United States, the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) is a federal program that offers assistance. Other countries or regions may have similar programs.
  2. Check Eligibility Requirements: Once you identify a program, check its eligibility criteria. These criteria often include income level, household size, and whether you’re already receiving other types of government assistance.
  3. Gather Necessary Documentation: You’ll likely need to provide documentation to prove your eligibility. Verification can include recent utility bills, pay stubs or tax returns, proof of income identification documents, and information about your household.
  4. Complete the Application: Fill out the application form provided by the assistance program. This process can be done online, by mail, or in person at a local agency.
  5. Submit the Application: Submit all the required documentation and the application form. Make sure to keep copies of everything for your records.
  6. Wait for Approval: After submission, there will be a processing period. The time frame varies by program.
  7. Receive Assistance: If approved, you’ll receive assistance, which may be a direct payment to your heating oil supplier, vouchers, or rebates.
  8. Stay Informed About Renewal: Some programs require annual renewal, so staying informed about the renewal process and deadlines is essential.

Additional Resources

  • Beyond the basic assistance programs, here are some additional resources to explore:
  • State and Local Government Websites – Many states and municipalities have specific programs or resources dedicated to heating assistance. Check your state or local government’s website for more information.
  • Energy Star Program – For long-term savings, consider Energy Star-rated heating systems that are more energy-efficient.  
  • Department of Energy (DOE) – The DOE website offers resources and information on energy efficiency, including ways to reduce heating costs.
  • Non-Profit Organizations – Organizations like the Salvation Army sometimes offer emergency heating assistance.

In Conclusion

Free Home Heating Oil Assistance is essential for helping families during the winter. These programs combine efforts from federal initiatives like the Winterization Program Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), charities such as the Salvation Army, and local community groups.  

They offer a crucial safety net for those who struggle to afford their heating needs. These programs provide financial help and foster a sense of community support and compassion.  These incentives ensure that vulnerable groups, including low-income families, older people, and individuals with disabilities, have access to the resources they need to keep their homes warm and secure.  

The ongoing support and funding of these programs are vital. They represent more than just monetary assistance; they reflect a commitment to the welfare and respect of every person in our community, particularly during the harsh winter months.

You May Also Want to Read

Home Heating Grants – Many low-income families can not afford high heating costs, especially in winter. The government provides grants to households that qualify financially. Each year, families are sent …

Duke Energy Assistance Programs – Duke Energy offers programs that help families with trouble paying heating and utility bills. North Carolina, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, and South Carolina. You can get emergency assistance if you cannot pay your utility bills.

Minnesota Energy Assistance Programs – The Energy Assistance Program (EAP) helps residents who qualify financially with heating bill assistance. Grants are given according to family size, income, and the fuel used.

Pamela Lipscomb

We understand that finding financial assistance can be overwhelming and stressful. Our site provides information on potential programs, eligibility guidelines, and more. Please remember that this information is for guidance only, and we cannot guarantee assistance. For personalized advice and support, we strongly encourage you to consult with financial advisors, legal professionals, or the program providers directly.

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  13. My wife is in nursing school and planning on graduation in June, but not working at the moment. I’m the only one who is working. We are scheduled to have our electric cut off tomorrow, I don’t have a clue what we will do without heat, I don’t know who to reach out to for help. I’m about ready to just give up!

  14. Is help available for 2018… Fuel oil help needed for a lady friend who does not have Internet access. She is 74, widowed and has a monthly income below 1200. Asked for help and was told her oil has to be 25% full and to get it filled would take up to 10 days! She would freeze to death!


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