Heating oil tanks are made from fabricated steel or plastic and can be installed inside, outside or underground. Either type can be single-skinned, double-skinned (where the tank has two layers) or integrally bunded (bund means protective layer).
Integrally bunded tanks consist of one tank sitting within another, the outside one housing the main tank’s fittings and vents. These tanks offer better protection than double-skinned tanks as there is more room between the two layers to prevent oil leaking externally.
Types of heating oil tanks
Most single and double-skinned tanks need to have a bund built around them for protection, although this will depend on where you live and the position of your tank. The bund can hold 110% of the tank’s contents.
If you’re thinking of getting a home heating oil system or changing your current tank, it’s important that you get one that is manufactured to Oftec (the oil-firing industry trade association) standards. An Oftec-registered technician can help you choose the type of tank and where it can or should sit so that it complies with regulations, which vary across the UK.
There are regulations determining how and where tanks should be installed to limit environmental and fire risks, as well as ensuring it complies with building regulations – which also vary across the UK. An Oftec-registered technician will be able to tell you what is and isn’t feasible, or whether your current tank meets regulations. You can visit the Oftec website to find one in your area, contact the Environment Agency or speak to a Barton Petroleum representative at your local depot for further advice.