A fuel oil furnace does not burn oil by itself. The fuel oil is pumped to the burner. It is then mixed with air and becomes a fine mist. The mist is injected into the burner, by a nozzle, where it is ignited in the combustion chamber. Fuel oil furnaces are a safe heating system. Fuel oil itself does not burn.
Before the heating season you should have your fuel oil furnace serviced. You should also check your fuel oil tank for leaks. Check all the fittings for leaks.
Check your fuel oil level in your tank. do not allow the level to get below 1/4 rank. Below the 1/4 level will cause sediment and sludge on the bottom of the tank to be pumped into your fuel line causing blockages i yuou fuel oil filter and nozzle.
You should schedule a routine maintenance call from your heating service technician. The Department of Energy recommends a yearly service for your fuel oil furnace. Oil systems produce soot and deposits build up during the year. These deposits reduce the efficiency of you furnace.
Your local furnace technician will change the fuel oil filter and nozzle. They also should change the air filter. They will also clean out the furnace interior. They will check the draft to make certain the furnace is operating properly.
A properly serviced furnace will lower 80% fewer no heat service calls during the heating season.