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Advice for Storing Your Heating Oil Safely

Oil in drums to prevent spillage

You have to follow certain regulations if you have an oil storage container at your home, business or farm.

Oil storage containers include tanks, drums, intermediate bulk containers (IBCs) and mobile containers called ‘bowsers’.

The person responsible for the property or premises is usually legally responsible for the oil storage container, eg the homeowner, business owner or site manager.

Which regulations to follow

The regulations are different depending on where you store your oil.

At your home

You normally have to follow building regulations if you have an oil storage container installed at your home.

If your storage container can hold 3,501 litres or more, you must follow the regulations for businesses.

At your business

You have to follow oil storage regulations if the container at your business can hold 201 litres or more of certain types of oil.

The regulations for businesses also apply to public sector buildings like schools, hospitals, churches and residential care homes.

At your farm

You have to follow different regulations depending on whether you’re storing oil:

  • for heat and power for agriculture, eg to fuel your tractor or run a grain dryer
  • to heat your farmhouse
  • for a separate part of your business, eg to fuel vehicles you hire out

Checking and labelling your tank

You should get your oil storage container inspected every year by a professional.

The person inspecting your tank will let you know when you should replace it.

Oil Care suggest that you look at your oil tank at least once a month, and learn what to do if you have an oil leak or spill.

Source: gov.uk