Oil Tanks

One of the biggest issues in the North for real estate offices are oil tank replacement guidelines and times.

While the manufacturers give data on a suggested life span of externally or internally installed steel wall oil tanks, internal corrosion is ALMOST NEVER visible from the outside until fuel leaks occur.

The inspector’s recommendation for the replacement is not going to override the regulation but he may suggest earlier replacement when it is apparent that issues are going to be eminent. Contact your insurance company if you are unsure about their needs.

OIL TANK TESTING STANDARDS U.S. & Canadian Standards groups and authorities pertaining to oil or other fuel storage tanks and tank testing include

  • ASTM
    • ASTM #-1739 – 95 (2002) Standard Guide for Risk-Based Corrective Action Applied at Petroleum Release Sites, quoting from ASTM: 1.1 This is a guide to risk-based corrective action (RBCA), which is a consistent decision-making process for the assessment and response to a petroleum release, based on the protection of human health and the environment. Sites with petroleum release vary greatly in terms of complexity, physical and chemical characteristics, and in the risk that they may pose to human health and the environment. The RBCA process recognizes this diversity, and uses a tiered approach where corrective action activities are tailored to site-specific conditions and risks. While the RBCA process is not limited to a particular class of compounds, this guide emphasizes the application of RBCA to petroleum product releases through the use of the examples. Ecological risk assessment, as discussed in this guide, is a qualitative evaluation of the actual or potential impacts to environmental (nonhuman) receptors. There may be circumstances under which a more detailed ecological risk assessment is necessary (see Ref (1). 1.2 The decision process described in this guide integrates risk and exposure assessment practices, as suggested by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), with site assessment activities and remedial measure selection to ensure that the chosen action is protective of human health and the environment. The following general sequence of events is prescribed in RBCA, once the process is triggered by the suspicion or confirmation of petroleum release: … – ASTM – www.astm.org
  • CSA Standards – Canada
  • NFPA
    • NFPA 30: Flammable and Combustible Liquids COde (2008)
    • NFPA 31: Standard for the Installation of Oil-Burning Equipment (2006)
    • NFPA 54: National Fuel Gas Code (2009)
    • NFPA 58: Liquefied Petroleum Gas Code (2008)
    • NFPA 101: Life Safety Code (2009)
    • NFPA 225: Model Manufactured Home Installation Standard
    • NFPA 329: Handling Underground Releases of Flammable and Combustible Liquid
  • UL & UL-Canada
    • Aboveground Tanks, ULC-S601, -S630, ULC/ORD-C142.18, ULC-S653
    • Protective Coating for Underground Steel Tanks, ULC-S616, CAN/ULC-S603.1
    • Storage Cabinets for Flammable Liquid Containers, ULC/ORD-C1275
    • Bulk Containers, Nonmetallic, for Combustible and Non-combustible Liquids {containers-Tanks}, ULC/ORD-C142.14
    • Tanks for Used Oil, ULC-S652
    • Tanks for Heating and / or Generator Fuels, Aboveground, CAN/ULC-S602
    • Underground Tanks, ULC-S615, 603, CAN/ULC-S603.1
    • Anode Assemblies, Underground Tank Protection, ULC-S618
    • Shop Fabricated Steel Aboveground Tanks For Flammable and Combustible Liquids, CAN/ULC-S601
    • Aboveground Steel Tanks for Fuel Oil and Lubricating Oil, CAN/ULC-S602
    • Underground Tanks, ULC-S615, Steel Underground Tanks for Flammable and Combustible Liquids, ULC-S615
    • External corrosion Protection Systems for Steel Underground Tanks for Flammable and Combustible Liquids, CAN/ULC-S603.1
    • Aboveground Steel contained Tank Assemblies for Flammable and Combustible Liquids, CAN/ULC-S653
    • Tank Assemblies for the Collection, Storage and Removal of Used Oil, CAN/ULC-S652
    • Hose and Hose assemblies for Flammable and Combustible Liquids, CAN/ULC-S612
    • Hose Nozzle Valves for Flammable and Combustible Liquids, CAN/ULC-S620
    • Non-metallic Underground Piping for Flammable and Combustible Liquids, CAN/ULC-S660
    • Double Containment Fibre Reinforced Plastic Linings for Flammable and Combustible Liquid Storage Tanks, ULC/ORD-C58.4
  • US EPA

A discussion of methods for finding evidence of previous or current buried tanks at properties is at BURIED OIL TANKS, FINDING More detail about the chances that an oil tank is leaking or about to leak is at TANK FAILURE RATES. More detail about the causes of oil tank leaks, both buried and above ground tanks, is at OIL TANK FAILURE CAUSES.

Homebuyers should be sure to review OIL TANK LEAK TEST METHODS – Leaky Heating Oil Tanks – How Oil Tanks are Tested for Evidence Leaks, of Current or Previous Oil Spills and OIL TANK LEGAL ISSUES – Home Buyers and Home Owners Guide to Leaky Heating Oil Tanks – What to Do About & When to Report Oil Tank Leaks. Leaky Heating Oil Tanks.

Homeowners who have old oil tanks above ground or any age oil tank below ground should also be sure to review OIL TANK ABANDONING PROCEDURE – Abandoning Commercial vs. Residential Underground Oil Storage Tanks (UST) – Procedures & Regulations A separate website addresses Septic Tanks. Regulations governing tank leak reporting and tank abandonment as well as the registration of oil tanks at properties is at OIL TANK REGULATIONS