An important part of the “energy system” in your house, heating oil storage tanks are built to safely store your fuel while keeping it available and accessible for immediate use. Here are 10 fast facts about the heating oil tanks that are being installed today.
Oil tanks last for years—but not forever. If your tank is approaching 30 years old, it’s time to look into an upgrade (see #10 for how to minimize this cost).
The latest aboveground oil tanks can be installed in small spaces of garages or basements—even those that have an unusual shape.
With the help of tank enclosures, oil tanks can be installed outside.
Residential oil tanks almost never leak, and the latest models have leak-detection systems built in.
The latest tank designs are constructed with a double wall that includes galvanized steel, which is corrosion resistant.
They come with long-term warranties, so you’re protected if something goes wrong.
With the help of the latest technology, it’s easy to monitor storage tanks from afar, which keeps homeowners and dealers informed of when it’s time for a delivery and in the unlikely event of a leak.
They’re much more aesthetically pleasing than tanks from decades ago.
The cost to upgrade from an old oil tank is less than many people believe! Contact your heating company today for details and an estimate.
Rebates are often available—while they last. Homeowner rebate information can be found here.
Understanding Your Tank Gauge
Long-time heating oil consumer or not, it never hurts to review the basics of reading your heating oil tank gauge so you don’t get caught short.
Your heating oil tank gauge is usually a clear glass or plastic cylinder located at or near the top of the tank. The gauge is marked with numbers that look like a car’s fuel gauge: F, ¾, ½, ¼. A red marker or float tells you how much fuel you have left. If the marker is at the bottom of the gauge or not visible, your tank is empty–or close to it.
To make sure the gauge is working, carefully remove the outer case and gently press the float down. If it bobs back up to the original position, the gauge is working. If the gauge is not working, arrange for a repair.
Order more fuel when the gauge reaches ¼.
If you don’t want to spend time reading your tank gauge and placing an order when you need more fuel, your heating oil full-service company may be able to set you up on an automatic delivery schedule. Your heating oil supplier will estimate when your next delivery is needed based on computer modeling and your past usage. In most cases, they will get your heating oil to you when your tank is about one-quarter full.