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Winter Survival Hacks

by Jones Oil

Winter is well and truly underway, and until now the weather has been tolerable. But it might be an idea to prepare to outsmart Jack Frost so you can go about your business when the weather turns artic. Here at Jones Oil, we’ve put together our top winter survival hacks for your home, car and even your health.

winter survival hacks

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Keeping Your Pets Warm This Harsh Irish Winter

by Jones Oil

As temperatures begin to fall in Ireland, hats, scarves, gloves and cosy sweaters quickly come out of their summer retirement. While you’re preparing yourself and your family for the harsh upcoming months, don’t forget about your four-legged family members. Keeping pets warm during a harsh Irish winter is an important – yet often overlooked – step in ensuring their health and safety.

To help you keep your pets warm and cosy this winter, here at Jones Oil we’ve put together this list of helpful tips:

 

Posh Pooches and Kitty Couture

 

You may feel silly dressing your dog or cat up in clothing, but on the coldest days of winter, doing so can really help. Most cat breeds have dense fur and don’t need clothes. However, some hairless breeds, such as the Sphinx, get chilled during colder months and would benefit from a sweater.

Dogs with short coats could also benefit from a well-fitting sweater or jacket when the temperatures plummet. Small breeds, like Chihuahuas and Boston Terriers, are especially susceptible to winter’s chill.

 

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Protect those Paws

 

Most people know that dogs regulate their temperatures through their tongues, but did you know that the soles of their paws also play an important role in temperature regulation? When your dog is outdoors, wearing booties will help protect his paws from frigid snow and ice and help keep him warm. Booties also protect your dog’s pads from ice-melting products and salt. If your dog won’t wear booties, be sure to keep the fur between his pads neatly trimmed to prevent an accumulation of snow and ice, and wipe his paws when he comes inside.

 

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Grooming Goes a Long Way

 

Keeping your pet neatly groomed is important year-round, but it is especially important during the winter. For obvious reasons, you should avoid shaving or trimming his/her hair, but it is still essential to maintain a good grooming regime. Remove knots and thoroughly brush the coat on a regular basis. Matted fur provides less insulation and is less efficient in protecting your pet from cold rain and snow.

 

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If it’s Too Cold for You, It’s Too Cold for Them

 

The best solution for keeping your pets warm is keeping them inside during the winter. Dogs should be taken out for frequent walks, but do not leave them outdoors for extended periods of time during frigid weather. Be mindful of the wind chill as well as the actual temperature. No matter the temperature, the wind chill can still cause frostbite and hypothermia. During extreme cold snaps, exposed skin on the nose, paw pads and ears can suffer permanent damage as the result of freezing.

 

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Provide Adequate Outdoor Accommodations

 

If your pets need to be outdoors for any length of time during the winter, or if you are caring for community cats in your neighbourhood, make sure they have adequate shelter. Both dogs and cats need a dry, windproof shelter with just enough room to sit and lie down. Ideally, the shelter should be raised a few centimetres off the ground, and the floor should be covered with straw. Avoid using cedar shavings as bedding as they can cause skin irritation in dogs and are toxic to cats. Install a plastic flap in the doorway to help block out cold drafts.

 

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Feed Your Pets Appropriately

 

During the winter, pets expend more energy to stay warm. Even if your dog or cat is primarily kept indoors, you may need to provide a little extra food. For outdoor pets, make sure clean, unfrozen water is available at all times, and never use metal bowls when temperatures dip below freezing. Throughout the year, supplement your pet’s diet with essential fatty acids that cause the coat to grow in a bit thicker.

 

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Provide a Warm Place to Lay

 

Your pet will enjoy crawling in a warm, comfy bed during the winter just as much as you enjoy getting in your bed at the end of a long day. Place pet beds on platforms at least 7 centimetres above the floor to avoid drafts. If your home is chilly, help your pet stay warm with a hot water bottle or microwavable bed warmer under his bed.

 

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Extra Pampering for Special Needs Pets

 

Geriatric, young and ill pets require special care during the winter months. They may experience additional difficulty in regulating their temperature, so they need your help to stay warm. Monitor your special needs pets closely, and if they seem cold, provide a sweater, a hot water bottle or other means of warming them up.

 

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Keeping Them Warm and Safe

 

Using electric heaters, wood stoves or electric blankets to take the chill off is a good way to make your home more comfortable during the winter, but it can also be dangerous. These things should only be used around your pets under close supervision. For your pets’ safety, install barriers to keep them away from hot surfaces, and do not leave electrical cords exposed.

 

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Lots of Love

 

Nothing warms your pet’s heart like lots of love and affection. Make time to spend with your furry companions to make them feel warm and comfortable this winter. Spending extra time with your pets ensures that you will be able to easily spot any signs that they are feeling a bit chilly, and sharing affection is sure to give you a warm, fuzzy feeling as well.

 

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Diesel Laundering – What to look out for!

by Jones Oil

It’s important to shop around when it comes to finding the best price for petrol and diesel. However with diesel laundering becoming a big problem in Ireland it’s important to know the all the facts so you don’t run the risk of ruining your engine! To keep you in the know, we’ve created a guide outlining what to look out for when it comes to diesel laundering.

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Farmers Markets in Ireland

by Jones Oil

Farmers Markets are becoming increasingly popular in Ireland as people are becoming more health conscious and more aware of supporting their local businesses. They’re a great way to get the freshest produce straight from the hands of the producers. Here’s a run-down of Ireland’s finest Farmers Markets and everything you need to know about them!

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Stunning Spring – 15 Reasons to Love the Season of New Starts

by Jones Oil

When it comes to seasons, the internet provides us with plenty of pretty pictures to stare at. Snowy scenes get us psyched for winter, blissful beaches ready us for the summer and gorgeous autumn hues get us all wrapped up and ready to crunch through the nearest park. Somehow, spring seems to get overlooked in all of this. Which is a shame, given the fact it’s the season that signals the end of the cold snap and the start of all things new. Nothing beats the feeling of stepping outside on the first sunny day after a long, chilly winter. Awash with colour and fresh beginnings, the spring calendar is also packed with some of the planet’s most spectacular festivals. In short, this is a season made for celebration. So, open a window, let the birdsong and fresh air in and check out our pick of the prettiest pictures of spring.

1. The Big Thaw  

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It all begins when the last frosts finish, and, if you live in icier climes, the snow starts to melt. If you’re lucky, you might spot a crocus poking through the snow. This gorgeous image captures the sun’s reflection in one perfectly-formed droplet.

2. Mr Blue Sky

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Nothing says ‘spring has sprung’ quite like the sight of budding trees against a flawless, blue sky. The first sunny day of the year usually has people heading outside in their droves – such is nature’s irresistible drive.

3. Pockets of Blue


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In usually subzero Siberia, the thaw of Lake Bakai reveals pockets of water as blue as the clear skies above.

4. Lambs!


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Step into the countryside at this time of year and you’re bound to hear and see loads of lovely, leaping lambs.Not all of them appear to be smiling like this little thing, but either way, they’re bound to be cute.

5. Sublime Sunrises and Still Skeletal Trees

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The sunrises are stunning in spring, especially if the winter trees are still in sight, like this skeletal beauty in Llanberis, Wales.

6. Colour Pops

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Wherever you are in the world, you’ll start to see nature’s first pops of colour come through when spring hits. This colour-pop pic was taken  in the usually-barren landscape of the Arizona Desert.

7. Magnificent Murmurations


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Ever been lucky enough to witness a murmuration? It’s when thousands of starlings move en masse, creating a breathtaking, speckled black shape in the sky. Whilst they often happen in autumn, they can also be witnessed in spring.

8. Frog Spawn


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OK, so you learnt about frog spawn in primary school, but it is still pretty amazing to remind yourself of how those slimy globules have tadpoles inside that eventually lose their tails, grow four limbs and turn into frogs. Magic.

9. Everything’s Fresh

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Like the colours on this impressive close-up of a chunk of watery spring moss, which is about as close as you can get to typical spring hues.

10. Cherry Blossom


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In Japan, the arrival of cherry blossom, aka Sakura, prompts a huge celebration. Thankfully, you don’t have to go that far to catch a glimpse of the fluffy blooms, which grace streets and parks throughout the northern hemisphere. They’re not around for long, but even when they fall, they make a mesmerising carpet on the most average of tarmac paths.

11. Ducklings and Chicks


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Fluffy ducklings and chicks arrive in abundance in spring. Actually, these are cygnets, but they look very cute taking a clever ride on their graceful mother’s back.

12. Holi Festival

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The Hindu Festival of colour has had revellers chucking powdered paints at each other for centuries. Such is the impact of this spectacle, it’s made its way right across the globe, and mini Holi festivals now crop up in the USA, UK and beyond. Dress in white that you’re not planning to wear again any time soon and get ready to immerse yourself in a kaleidoscope of high-definition colour.

13. Cracking Colours


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Whether or not you celebrate Easter, you can’t fail to be impressed by the creativity and sights that the celebration brings out, like these gorgeous, glossy, hand-painted eggs.

14. Hot Chocolate

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Scientists reckon the reason why we’re so into chocolate is the fact it triggers a burst of serotonin, the happy hormone, in our bodies. Add into the complex equation the fact that some people give it up for length and the well-known truth that chocolate tastes its best when it comes in an ovoid form and it’s not difficult to see why chocolate eggs are one of the most exciting reasons to get excited about spring. Yum.

 

15. Cruise Control

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Every year, cruise ships cut through the breathtaking landscape of the Norwegian Fjords, passing through crystal clear waters, villages of rainbow,  wooden houses and backdrops of snowy, soaring peaks. We can almost smell the fresh air…      


Which Countries Rank Highest In Energy Efficiency

by Jones Oil

Energy Efficiency

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29 Awe-Inspiring Autumn Images

by Jones Oil

Autumn has arrived, meaning social media is awash with status updates from disgruntled people who wish it was still summer, can’t get warm and are sick of the rain already. The sudden drop in temperature might tempt you to stay indoors, but head outside and you’ll find stunning scenery. Autumn is, after all, one of the most beautiful seasons of the year. We’ve compiled a gorgeous gallery of some of autumn’s most impressive aesthetic treats to inspire you. Now: wrap up warm, head outside and see the limited edition beauty before it’s gone. Then come home to a cosy house, comfy sofa and warming food. Bliss!

1. Climbing the Walls

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This cottage in Wales looks stunning, enveloped as it is in beautiful climbing plants.

2. Pretty Portmeirion

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You could be forgiven for thinking this breathtaking photograph was taken in the Far East, but it’s Wales, again. This is the Chinese Lake, tucked in the woodland at picturesque coastal village, Portmeirion.

3. Work of Art


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At Yorkshire Sculpture Park, these rust-coloured sculptures blend in beautifully with their surroundings.

4. Leaf it to the Experts


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As if autumn didn’t look good enough as nature intended, several artists work with the fiery colours it provides to create stunning results. Perhaps the most well-known of these is Andy Goldsworthy, who made this breathtaking piece.

5. It’s All in the Detail


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Land artist Walter Mason is behind this intricate piece.

6. More Goldsworthy


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This piece by Any Goldsworthy shows the full spectrum of leaf shades.

7. The Cycle of Leaf


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Photographer Martin Hill created this work, Autumn Life Cycle, on a river.

8. Clever Cutting


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Inspired by a caterpillar munching a leaf, Spanish artist Lorenzo Duran began cutting incredible, detailed designs into autumn foliage.

9. Chinar from China


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Duran’s work is similar to the remarkable Chinese art of Chinar leaf carving. Leaves from the Chinar tree are preserved and artists carve the delicate top layers of the leaf, taking great care to keep the veins intact.

10. Smashing


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We couldn’t make a post about autumn without mentioning giant pumpkins! Here, a baby girl is sitting atop a gargantuan pumpkin weighing over 1100 pounds, grown by Ian and Stuart Paton at Pine Tops Nursery, Hampshire.

11. Strange Fruit


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Pumpkins means pumpkin carving – but talented Ray Villafane’s designs beat your average Jack-o-lantern hands down.

12. Tree-mendous


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Sometimes, it’s the simplest of images that blow you away. In Japan, the sunlight shining through these lovely leaves contrasts wonderfully against the silhouette of the trunk.

13. Mountain and Maples


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Japan, again; here, a reddened maple festoons the view of Fuji.

14. Central Park


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Fall in New York, and the riot of colour in Central Park brings brightness to an otherwise grey cityscape.

15. Wonderful Wicklow


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Mount Usher Gardens in County Wicklow are positively glowing in this gorgeous snap.

16. Loch at That


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In this resplendent view of a Scottish loch, the autumn colours are mirrored in the water, creating double the beauty.

17. Water View


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More remarkable reflections in the Lake District.

18. Oh Deer


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Autumn is rutting season for deer. If you’re lucky enough to live near a herd, it’s worth watching them (from afar) as they compete for mates. This stag at Richmond Park in London is sporting an elaborate bracken crown. Puts the average stag do fancy dress theme to shame. Photograph by Mark Smith.

19. Pretty Fly


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It’s not just the trees that are colourful in autumn; mushrooms and toadstools come in all sorts of dazzling shades. One of the most famous funghis of all is the Fly Agaric, which despite its fairytale appearance, is extremely poisonous.

20. Bracken the Game


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The sun illuminates burnished bracken in Eskdale, Cumbria, in complete contrast to the angry skies behind.

21. Everything’s Rosy


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In early autumn, the first trees to turn stand out from the still-lush green, as this photograph, taken in Dublin, shows.

22. It’s a Grower


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Another Irish beauty, this snap shows a building clad in gleaming leaves.

23. Creepy


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One of the most attractive autumn plants is the Virginia Creeper, shown here clinging to the walls of the Morritt Country House Hotel, County Durham.

24. Bird’s Eye View


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Photographer Kacper Kowalski specialises in images taken from above – and this stunner is a magnificent example.

25. Flying High


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Perhaps the most mesmerising views of autumn forests are those taken from above.

26. Grape View


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With their uniform rows of plants, autumn vineyards look every inch the patchwork quilt when snapped from above.

27. Falling in Love


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Tourists flock to America’s New England every fall, to experience the region’s signature autumnal hues.

28. Those Old Chestnuts


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In 2008, British brothers Mason and Jordan Latter wowed the world with their colossal collection of 7500 conkers, gathered in only a fortnight (with a little help from their friends.)

29. Remember, Remember


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Every year on the 5th November, Lewes in Sussex, England, hosts the largest Bonfire Night celebration in the world.


Top Ten Oil Tycoons

by Jones Oil

brought to you by Jones Oil – the home heating oil provider.

I control the majority of the world’s wealth, I’m mainly found in Russia and everyone just WISHES they were my kid. What am I? Yep. You guessed it. I’m an oil tycoon.

You don’t need a degree to be an oil baron, in fact some of the most successful are college drop-outs or inherited their oil companies from their parents. What those at the top have in common however, is ambition, drive, a savvy business sense and at times, very expensive tastes. Here’s our top ten oil tycoons.

10) Folorunsho Alaija

Folorunsho AlaijaImage Source

Nigeria’s first female billionaire Nigerian Folorunsho is relatively new to the billionaires club and can boast that her wealth is self-made. She dabbles in various industries and is the vice chair of Famfa Oil Limited. Forbes estimated her net worth at $2.5 billion. She gives back through philanthropic ventures include the Rose of Sharon Foundation that provides scholarships and business grants to widows and orphans.

9) Mohammed Al Amoudi

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This Saudi Arabian/Ethiopian businessman has oil refineries in Morocco, Saudi Arabia and Sweden. It was the building of Saudi Arabia’s nation-wide underground oil storage that gave Al Amoudi his big break – a $30 Billion project, quite the leg-up. He is the second-richest person in Saudi Arabia, after the country’s Prince of course, because that would be rude otherwise. His investments in Sweden saw him honoured with the Order of the Polar Star by King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden. His net worth in 2012 was $12.5 billion.

8) Roman Abramovich

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This Russian self-made billionaire was orphaned as a child and dropped out of college, but he didn’t let any of those things hold him back. Roman makes his riches from stakes in oil, steel, aluminium and gold. While his net worth of $13.6 billion doesn’t put him at the top of the rich list of oil tycoons, he can boast that he owns his very own football club (Chelsea) and, like, a really, really big yacht. The biggest in the world, in fact.

7) Vagit Alekperov

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This Russian businessman used to be Minister for Oil and Gas before the dissolution of the Soviet Union. The contacts no doubt came in handy in his during his subsequent rise to billionaire oil tycoon running LUKoil. In 2011 Forbes estimated his wealth at $13.9 billion

6) Viktor Vekselberg

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Okay it’s settled, we’re moving to Russia to make our fortune. Viktor is one of Russia’s top three richest people with Forbes putting his fortune at an estimated $17.2 billion. When he has some downtime from his investments in oil, telecoms and chemicals he can usually be found dusting his egg collection. Viktor boasts the world’s largest collection of Fabergé eggs. Fifteen of them. Let’s be honest, fifteen eggs doesn’t exactly sound overly impressive does it? But we’re sure they were pretty pricey.

5) Mikhail Fridman

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Mikhail is one of the younger oil tycoons on this rich list, coming in at a youthful 49. He founded Alfa Group in 1989. He’s now worth $17.6 Billion. He is a supporter and instigator of Jewish initiatives in Russia and Europe, in particular the Genesis Philanthropy Group that promotes Jewish identity among Russian-speaking Jews world-wide. He also owns Alfa-Eco and Alfa-Bank. We bet he drives an Alfa Romeo too.

4) Mukesh Ambani

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India’s richest man, Mukesh, inherited his company, Reliance Industries from his father. He initially dropped out of college to help his father expand the growing company and expand it he sure did. His personal wealth comes in at $19.6 billion, not too shabby. He doesn’t own a massive yacht but he does live in a private 27-storey building in Mumbai. Does that count?

3) The Koch Brothers

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Charles and David Koch inherited Koch Industries from their father Fred, who founded the company in the 1940s. Koch Industries was named the second largest privately held company in the US last year, with an annual revenue of $115 billion. They bought out their other two brothers for $1.1 Billion which now puts their worth at a hefty $34 Billion each. Quite a sum and they like it that way. Charles famously said the company will offer public shares “literally over my dead body”. Aw c’mon Charlie! Sharing is caring.

2) Rockefeller

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The richest of them all, and one of the most famous surnames in the world. Born in 1839 John Davison Rockefeller, Sr. was co-founder of the Standard Oil Company, which dominated the oil industry and domestic kerosene market. When he died, two months before his 98th birthday, Rockefeller’s net worth was $663.4 Billion. Making him the wealthiest oil tycoon ever. Standard Oil developed over 300 oil-based products including tar, paint, Vaseline petroleum jelly and chewing gum. Often under fire for his questionable business tactics, Rockefeller revolutionised the petroleum industry nonetheless.

1) JR Ewing

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Admit it. This is how you imagined all oil tycoons looked. It’s hard to put a net worth on this Dallas based oil baron’s actual fortune because he kept Ewing Oil’s books close to his chest. But if his wife Sue Ellen’s jewellery was anything to go by, they weren’t doing too badly. His rumoured dodgy deals and run-ins with his younger brother and partner Bobby threatened the future of the company many times. Yes you could argue that he’s not a real oil baron, but to many, he’s the only one that comes to mind. TV Guide voted him #1 in their 2013 list of The 60 Nastiest Villains of All Time and that’s quite the achievement.


20 of the Internet’s Most Awesome Snowmen

by Jones Oil

According to every tabloid newspaper since September, every year, this Christmas will be the coldest, whitest on record. Almost every festive decoration and card you own will probably involve a snow scene. And if you’re brave enough to venture into a shopping mall at this time of year, you’ll be confronted with piles of polystyrene, plastic and paper replacements for the real deal: the world is snow mad. The jury’s still out on whether Christmas will be white, but sooner or later, this winter should give us at least one snow day. And when it comes, don’t think you’ll get away with building a plain old carrot-and-coal snowman. Modern snowmen are creative, comedic and sometimes plain scary. So, stick on the heating, grab a cuppa and peruse the internet’s finest snowmen. Now, what will you build? Read the rest of this entry »


The Science of Staying Warm

by Jones Oil

Winter is upon us again and temperatures have dropped leaving a chill in the bones! In this infographic guide we take a look at the ways to make sure you keep cosy so you can enjoy the upcoming festive activities. Visit our home heating oil page for more information on the services Jones Oil offer.

The Science of Staying Warm

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