Oil tanks can be highly beneficial in the winter; but it is important to ensure that you are taking proper care of the oil tank to prevent leaks due to corrosion. Without proper care and treatment of oil tanks, an owner could be looking at anywhere from $20,000 to $50,000 in repair and cleanup costs.
What Causes An Oil Tank To Corrode?
One of the main reason oil tanks have leaks is due to corrosion that has occurred somewhere in the tank. Typically, corrosion is due to a buildup of water somewhere within the tank. The water causes the sulfur located in the tank to become much more acidic, which results in corrosion of the tank itself. Because this reaction occurs at water-level within the oil tank, this explains why some corrosive leaks occur on the side of oil tanks instead of at the bottom.
Although repair of oil tanks and cleanup can be quite costly, there are ways to prevent corrosion. Location of the tank filler is crucial to preventing corrosion. The tank filler should be flush with the ground, should have all pipes properly fitted to the tank, and should be properly sealed to ensure that no water seeps into the tank.
Another possibility that could lead to corrosion is condensation within the oil tanks. This occurs when the tank is not kept full and the temperature outside changes. Water is able to enter the tank from condensation and may accumulate inside the tank. Once this occurs, the corrosion process will begin and the tank will become corroded and a leak may occur.
Improper installation of the oil tanks may also lead to eventual corrosion. This is due to the tank being installed in cinders, ash, or acidic soil. This environment causes corrosion to occur on the outside of the tank, which could cause a tremendous amount of repair and cleanup work.
How Do I Prevent Corrosion?
When taking care of oil tanks, it is important to remember that corrosion is your worst enemy. Corrosion can cause unnecessary financial expenses and stress on the owner. Because of this, it is important to take proactive steps to reduce the likelihood that your oil tanks will become corroded. This can be accomplished by ensuring that condensation does not get into the tank, by ensuring that the tank is properly installed and that all pipes are securely fitted to the tank, and by ensuring that the tank is installed in an outdoor environment that is not harmful.
Better Home Heat Council concentrates on educating consumers about the economical and efficient use of oil heat. We also help consumers address energy efficiency issues within their homes. We support local oil companies of Lehigh Valley that provide a range of services and products. If you believe that your tank may be corroding or is in need of servicing, click here to search for a home heating oil supplier and servicing company in your area. Many of our oil dealers provide energy consultations for their customers.