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How Long Will An Oil Storage Tank Last?

how long oil tanks last pennsylvaniaA heating oil tank is built…well, like a tank. But that doesn’t mean it will last forever.

How long should a heating oil tank last? The answer to that question depends on a lot of factors, including:

  • The thickness of its walls
  • Whether it is single or double walled
  • What materials it’s made from
  • Whether it is installed inside, outside, or underground
  • What kind of environment the tank has been exposed to
  • How well the tank has been maintained

The good news is that modern heating oil storage tanks have come a long way from designs of the past, offering virtually leak-proof performance for decades. Let’s take a closer look at modern oil storage tanks, and why they’re worth the investment if you’re ready for a heating oil tank upgrade.

Modern Oil Tank Construction: Double Walls, More Than Double Life Span

In the past, oil tanks were constructed almost exclusively from steel, which were prone to internal corrosion in the presence of condensation (water). Steel tanks are still available today, but they are built to a much higher standard than in the past.

To get a better idea of the range of lifespans for today’s single-wall steel heating oil tanks, here’s a summary from inspectapedia.com.

Indoor tanks

Steel tank, 14-gauge, single wall, connected at tank end wall 15 years
Steel tank, 14-gauge, single wall, connected at tank bottom 20 years
Steel tank, 12-gauge, single wall, connected at tank end wall 20 years
Steel tank, 12-gauge, single wall, connected at tank bottom 25 years

Outdoor tanks

Steel tank, 14-gauge, single wall, connected at tank end wall 10 years
Steel tank, 14-gauge, single wall, connected at tank bottom 15 years
Steel tank, 12-gauge, single wall, connected at tank end wall 15 years
Steel tank, 12-gauge, single wall, connected at tank bottom 20 years

The most significant changes in oil tank design in recent years, however, have come in the use of alternative construction materials, including fiberglass and polyethylene plastic. These materials are often used as the inner lining of a double-walled storage tank; when combined with leak detection technology, these materials make today’s oil storage tanks virtually leak-proof.

Plastic and double walled oil storage tanks also last significantly longer than their all-steel, single wall counterparts. Here are sample projected lifespans for fiberglass and plastic heating oil tank or plastic lined double wall tanks, again from inspectapedia.com.

Indoor tanks

Fiberglass or Plastic tank, single wall 50 years
Fiberglass or Plastic tank, double wall 50+ years

Outdoor Tanks

Fiberglass or Plastic tank, single wall 50 years
Fiberglass or Plastic tank, double wall 50+ years

As you can see, modern heating oil tanks are built for life – and, in the case of the Granby 2-in-1 Double-Wall heating oil tanks we install, guaranteed for thirty years. All in all, a great investment if you’re ready to upgrade!

Not sure if an upgrade is right for you? Contact Clyde S. Walton today to request a FREE tank inspection and find out about heating oil tank replacement options. If you do choose to upgrade, install a new Granby 2-in-1 by March 31 and save $250!* Contact us today to learn more.

*New quotes only – other terms and conditions may apply. Contact us for details.

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