Does your home insurance cover your heating oil tank?

Many home insurance policies do not include repairs or incidents involving your heating oil tank in the standard cover. You should be covered for loss of fuel through theft and oil spills, and the environmental clean-up of your property and any adjacent land in the unlikely event of a leak.

A spill of diesel or kerosene from your oil tank can be dangerous for the water environment, human health and the wider environment.

Reasons an oil tank might leak

Oil tanks can leak for a variety of reasons; the most common are:

  • failures of the tank body
  • damage to equipment on the tank such as sight gauges
  • failure of components at the boiler end of the system, such as flexible hoses

Metal tanks can become rusty whilst plastic tanks can split due to several reasons.

Who is responsible for any leaks that might occur?

It is the responsibility of anyone who uses, stores, fills, transports or manufactures hazardous substances, ensure the substance is contained and used in a way that won’t result in leakage. They are also responsible for cleaning up any spills that occur and dealing with any consequences.

Whether you own or occupy premises that have a domestic oil tank, it is well advised that you have home insurance in place to cover costs associated with all aspects of the assessment and clean up of a spill. Contact your insurance company as soon as possible and check your oil tank is covered.

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