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Still have a heating oil tank buried underground? Be proactive, call Tri State Environmental Services

Winter months and cold weather bring a freeze-and-thaw cycle as winter comes to a close and with a shorter winter than expected heating oil leaks will become more apparent. This freeze and thaw cycle causes the soil around an underground oil tank to expand and contract. This ground movement can damage the older piping attached to underground oil tanks, resulting in oil leaks. Leaks of this nature can cause property damage, soil contamination, and loss of heat which can lead to freeze-ups and water damage which can lead to contaminated groundwater, storm water drains, sewers, and adjacent properties. In addition, any metal underground oil tank remaining on a property today has likely been there for quite some time, and as we know, time isn’t always our friend. An oil tank’s average life expectancy of roughly 20 years, the more time that passes beyond that, the more susceptible the older metal tanks are to decay and damage from elements inside and outside of the tank itself.


If you still have a heating oil tank buried underground, be proactive, call Tri State Environmental Services and have it removed and have a new tank installed above ground. In the meantime, here’s a few things to keep an eye out for.

  • Water in the tank - ask fuel delivery person to check;

  • Oil or oil sheen in your basement sump or French drain;

  • Fully or partially blocked tank vent from snow, ice, or insect nests;

  • Signs of spills around fill pipe or vent pipe;

  • Well water has strange tastes or smells;

  • Complaints from neighbors of fuel oil smells; and

  • Using more than normal amount of fuel.


If you have an environmental emergency, please contact us asap.


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