Benefits of removing an old oil tank

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out of site - out of mind, right? Not when it comes to oil tanks. The soil is not the best place to put metals that can easily corrode and rust, but that's where our grandaddies thought it would be best placed. The problem is that when it does leak, it causes a lot of damage both the eco system, and to the owners wallet.
This is especially true in New Jersey, where many of the soil types are more conducive to causing decay.
Getting rid of that old oil tank isn't just a good idea, it's a must.


I have an old tank that's I suspect is leaking and I live in the Passaic New Jersey area. If I'm not selling my house, is there a law that I have to remove it? Thanks

No, there is no law that it has to be removed, but there is common sense. I can't tell you how many tanks that I have removed that if the owner would have acted ayear or two earlier and removed it, it would have been a clean, inexpensive job. Instead, they waited, and what was supposed to be an easy removal, turned into a major expense. Don't wait, just get it out.

Why can't I just drain the tank? Get someone to suck up all the heating oil, and then fill it in. I assume I can save alot of money. I recently converted to natural gas, so I don't need the tank anymore.
I also live in north new jersey. I assume the NJDEP law is the same for all the areas. Is it okay?

Although it might be "legal", you have a few issues with leaving it as is. First of all, it might have already leaked, and the longer you leave it, the deeper the oil will travel. Secondly, your home owners insurance rates are probably higher (unless you have an old granfathered policy). Actually, if you would be buying the house now, you would not be able to get insurance to cover it without removal. Also, you will have a problem when it comes time to sell your house. Banks won't give the buyer a mortgage. And lastly, how do you know for sure that every drop was removed from the tank? Chances are, it wasn't. Even a few gallons of oil that seeped into the ground can cost a fortune.
Bottom line? Yes, remove it.

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