Those who own or are thinking of purchasing older homes need to be aware of the many underground oil tanks still out there. If your home is more than 20 years old and there is an oil tank on the property you probably want to consider oil tank replacement, oil tank removal and oil tank disposal options. Fortunately, an oil tank removal cost is reasonable, especially if the tank is not leaking. You may even qualify for a rebate. Don’t wait until your tank is leaking to address an oil tank removal project.
While it is typically best to remove the old oil tank, certain circumstances make oil tank abandonment a preferable method of dealing with an old tank. When your tank resides underneath a building or in a location in which removing the tank could place a building in danger it is best to abandon the tank rather than removing it. Abandoning an oil tank simply means a licensed contractor will remove the oil or sludge, clean the tank, and then fill it with an inert material or slurry.
The typical procedure for underground heating oil tank removal is as follows (note that these guidelines apply to above ground oil tank removal as well, with the exception of excavation):
1. If you are still using the tank, contact your oil supplier to inform them about the tank removal and replacement. If you are changing from oil heat to electric or natural gas inform them that they can discontinue deliveries to your residence.
2. Locate and hire a licensed oil tank removal contractor. Your contractor should be experienced as well, but it is critical that they are licensed by the state for oil tank removal and oil tank remediation.
3. Obtain any necessary permits for the excavation, removal or abandonment of an underground oil tank. Permits may be required from state environmental protection agencies, local fire departments, health or planning departments. An experienced and competent contractor should be able to procure all the necessary permits.
4. Excavate to the top of the tank so that piping and fill lines can be disconnected and removed or capped if appropriate.
5. Have all oil or sludge removed from the tank and have the tank cleaned. Oil Tank NJ Pros, will credit you for any oil reclaimed.
6. Once the tank has been fully cleaned and excavated, remove it from the ground. It is now ready for disposal. Your contractor should also be able to handle the proper disposal of the oil tank. Disposal must be done at a properly licensed facility.
7. Test the soil surrounding the tank for the possibility of an oil release. If a release is detected it must be properly remediated and any soil or groundwater contamination reported to the state department of environmental protection.
8. Once the site is clean, have it certified as a clean removal, fill the excavation site with clean fill and rest easy knowing you’ll no longer need to worry about any potential problems from your underground oil tank.