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The importance of tank maintenance

The tank is an essential component of your oil-fired home heating system and needs to be regularly serviced and checked for any problems. Whilst buying a new tank seems like a considerable purchase, cleaning up after a faulty tank proves to be far more costly!

It is estimated that up to 55% of domestic oil tanks in the UK are over 15 years old, with the recommended life of tank between 15-30 years depending on how well it is maintained. The older a tank gets, the more likely it is to develop a leak, and when purchasing a new home you should always enquire about the age of the heating oil tank.

OFTEC recommends instructing a registered engineer to perform yearly services to both your oil boiler and tank, this will help keep the heating system in good shape and manage any problems before they escalate.

What should you look out for?

The key signs of a failing tank can be easily spotted and should be throughly checked by a registered engineer. Firstly check for any rust or excessive dents on the outside of the tank, this could show potential leakage sites. Also check for any wet spots or weeping on the surface of thank tank and any wet patches underneath - these are signs that the tank is already leaking.

One of the most common reasons for tank failure is improper installation. Your tank should be mounted on a stable surface, ensuring that each leg is in the correct position. Also check the placement of the heating oil tank, it shouldn’t be in a position where snow and ice are likely to fall onto it from overhanging branches.

Remember to check that the tank’s fuel gauge is not cracked or frozen so you are getting an accurate reading of the fuel levels. In addition, ensure that the fuel lines from the tank to the furnace are enclosed in protective tubing, even if they are underground they should be protected at all times.

How to protect your tank

Is your tank adequately insured? Many home insurance policies don’t extend to heating oil tanks and loss of oil so The Environment Agency recommends taking out a specific insurance policy for this. A good insurance policy will also cover you in the event of a leak which can be costly to clean up.

Having your tank regularly serviced will also help to prevent leaks and future problems. A yearly service will also detect any water contaminating your tank which, if left, could cause serious problems for your Aga and heating system.

Is it time to replace your tank? We sell a range of single skin and bonded oil tanks online in various sizes. Order yours now: