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Oil tank leaking

Oil tank leaking?

This article discusses the most common reasons for why your oil tank could be leaking and the best way to go about rectifying it.

Always contain the leak as soon as you can

The number one priority as soon as you notice a smell of oil from your tank or the oil line is to detect the leak and contain it asap. This is to try and avoid as much environmental damage as possible as well as preventing oil wastage.  In fact the Environment Agency asks oil boiler owners to check the condition of their oil tanks regularly in an effort to prevent leaks.

Can you see signs of wear and tear?

Signs of damage or wear and tear that could present an issue should always be inspected by a OFTEC oil engineer who can come and attend to the oil tank, provide advice and rectify any faults before a leak could develop.

Check your home insurance policy

Leaked oil often ends up in drains which seeps into our rivers and streams.  Oil is poisonous to fish and marine life. It also smothers aquatic plants. In fact just 2 litres of oil could seriously pollute the volume of water needed to fill an Olympic sized swimming pool. If you haven’t already done so check your home insurance covers the spillage of oil.

Reporting oil leaks

To report an oil spill or leak, contact the Environment Agency’s 24-hour emergency hotline on 0800 807060.

How to quickly solve a leaking oil tank

  1. Immediately turn the tap off to cut off the flow of oil
  2. Identify where the leak is coming from – remember there may be multiple areas
  3. If there is oil on the ground sand is a good way to absorb the spill
  4. Prevent the flow to any nearby buildings and water course

Once this external works has been done you will have some admin tasks to quickly tick off;

  1. Try to identify how much fuel has been lost from the tank. This can be achieved by checking records of previous usage and from your fuel supplier
  2. Tell your insurance provider asap as they will arrange for contractors to respond to – please note if you have not maintained your tank or pipes they may void this part of your insurance. It is always best to get the heating engineer to check the tank and pipes during your annual oil boiler service.
  3. Ask your local fuel supplier if they can uplift the remaining fuel as quickly as possible
  4. If the heating oil has leaked into any water way, contact the Environment Agency on 0330 107 1335
  5. Ensure any repairs are made by an OFTEC registered engineer

What next?

Total Energy Services has an experienced professional team of OFTEC registered engineers who are specially trained to deal with all kinds of oil leaks, please call 01258 472132 for further advice and queries or fill in the enquiry form.

Our OFTEC technicians attend to oil tanks across Dorset, Wiltshire, Somerset and Hampshire. DBS checked, professional and reliable our pricing is honest and clear and our fully staffed office are always on hand to assist.


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