Failing Home Heating Oil Tank: Snow, Ice or Perhaps Insect Nests?

Failing Home Heating Oil Tank?

Winter hasn’t released us from its icy grasp yet, so keeping your home toasty and warm is of the utmost importance. What are you to do, though, if you notice your house’s temperature falling despite cranking up the thermostat?

If you’re part of the 80% of Northeastern US citizens that rely on oil to heat their homes, you might be dealing with a failing home heating oil tank. Any number of environmental factors and equipment malfunctions can lead to problems with your tank, so it helps to know what to look out for.

Read on to learn about some of the most common reasons a home heating oil tank fails and what you can do to fix it.

Snow and Ice

Water damage and condensation are two of the most common reasons that people end up needing an oil tank replacement. Unfortunately, the snow and ice that pile up during winter can mean your above-ground tank and fuel lines stay in constant contact with water for months. If any of the moisture makes its way inside your heated oil tank, it can rust the unit from the inside out.

The extreme temperatures that occur during the winter can also cause problems. Over time, rapid heating and cooling can cause cracks to form in the equipment, leading to leaks. Combined with moisture damage, one bad winter could mean you have to replace your tank, even if it’s still new.

To protect the machinery, keep the area as clear of snow and ice as possible and check on it often. Call a professional to inspect and clean the heating unit if you notice any signs of water damage.

Insect Infestations

Insect infestations are annoying at best and dangerous at worst. As we start to see spots of warm weather, we’ll also see an increase in unwanted bugs.

Even the tiniest of holes or leaks can make your home heating oil system vulnerable to pests. Leaking oil from your tank or fuel line can attract flies, so if you notice them swarming around the equipment, check for any holes or visible oil spots.

If the fuel line or vent pipe is compromised, insects can find their way inside and make nests that block the flow of fuel. Wasps called mud daubers make nests of tightly packed mud and are especially notorious for holing up in these tiny enclosed spaces. To avoid getting stung, call a professional pest control team to remove them and then have your tank inspected for internal damage.

Aging Equipment

No matter how well you care for your heating system, the components will break down over time. If your oil tank is 30-50 years old and you start to notice problems, you’ll likely have to replace it. Having an inspector look at it sooner rather than later can help you avoid having to clean up a costly and dangerous oil spill if it starts to leak.

Prevent a Failing Home Heating Oil Tank From Freezing You Out

Don’t let a failing home heating oil tank get the best of you this winter. Whether you’ve noticed any of the above problems or still aren’t sure why your heating system is giving you trouble, give us a call.

The licensed professionals at All American Environmental have been serving clients like yourself for twenty years in New Jersey. The next time you need a heating oil tank removal, replacement, or cleaning, put our experience to work for you. Contact us today to get started.