What should I look for in a
tank installation and
A professional should install
it. Tank installation is NOT a
do-it-yourself weekend project.
Have it inspected periodically.
This can be done during your oil
burner preventive maintenance
check. The service personnel
should look around the tank;
inspect the fittings, the area
the tank is in, and the tank
You should ensure that the tank
is away from debris and bushes,
and metal objects should not be
leaned on the tank. Also, if
there is a smell of oil from the
tank, bring it to the attention
of your oil heat dealer. If a
tank is corroding from the
inside out, smells and small wet
spots can indicate the tank is
beginning to fail.
When is it time to
replace my oil tank?
Home heating oil tanks last a
long time. They are made of
high-grade steel, fiberglass, or
sometimes double wall tanks of
plastic and steel, and can last
for decades. Maintenance of the
tanks and inspections prolong
the life of the tank. You should
talk with your oil heat retailer
about the potential need to
replace your tank. He can
provide advice on how to
evaluate the tank, and
What causes tank failure?
The answer is corrosion.
Corrosion is a natural process.
It is essentially rust.
Corrosion can only occur in the
presence of water. That is why
it is very important to protect
the tank from exposure to water
inside the tank. An outside tank
does not have to be protected
from rain, but it should be
painted, and inspected to ensure
that any rusting is only on the
Is it normal for my oil
tank to give off an odor?
No, a properly functioning oil
tank should not produce odors.
If you notice an oil smell in
the building it may be a sign
that there is a problem with
your tank, the piping or your
heating appliance. You should
contact your oil dealer about
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