Heating Oil Tank Decommissioning

Heating Oil

The local Fire Chief or Fire Marshal establishes the requirements or procedures for dealing with heating oil tanks that are no longer in service. The International Fire Code requires that an underground heating oil tank, which has been out of service for a period of one year, must be:

  • Removed from the ground, or
  • Permanently closed in place.

The decision as to which option will be required is up to the local Fire Chief or Fire Marshal. (Reference: International Fire Code, Section 3404.2.13.1.3)

Closing Tanks in Place

If an underground heating oil tank is closed in place all of the following requirements must be met:

  • Flammable and combustible liquids must be removed from the tank and connected piping.
  • The suction, inlet, gauge, vapor return and vapor lines must be disconnected.
  • The tank must be filled completely with an approved inert solid material.
  • All remaining underground piping must be capped or plugged.
  • A record of the tank size, location and date of abandonment must be retained.
  • All exterior above-grade fill piping must be permanently removed.

(Reference: International Fire Code, Section 3404.2.13.1.4)

This outline should only be used as a guide. If you have further questions regarding decommissioning please contact your local Fire Marshal, or Fire Chief, regarding the requirements in your area.