DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum > Appliances > HVAC > how must rust is too much rust (oil tank)

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Old 06-30-2008, 12:24 AM  
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Default how must rust is too much rust (oil tank)

I just moved into a home that has an older oil tank. When I took a peak underneath I saw a fair amount of rust on the bottom of the tank. No leaks yet, but I am concerned.

The tank is 3/4 full and is literally built into the wall behind three painted sheet rock walls. I would like to hold off until I use the oil this winter if I can, but have to admit I know very little about home heating oil and oil tanks. Thanks.

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Old 06-30-2008, 06:32 AM  
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Hmmm - Maybe your oil company can do an inspection for you. If its a light surface rust I wouldn't worry. If its severely pitted then who knows.

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Old 06-30-2008, 08:38 AM  
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I would get a sheetmetal tray made up and put it undermeath the tank and check it frequently. Surface rust on oil tanks is common but don't take any chances.
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Old 06-30-2008, 05:00 PM  
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the rust on the outside is a concern but the problem that happens with older tanks is water build up (mostly from condenstion over the years) on the inside of the tank you should call your local hvac comp to test for water on the inside of the tank. this will cause rust and sediment and possibley do damage to the burner (or at least increase maint.) if the test comes back positive the inner wall may be breached already in which case run it low (not empty) have the tank replaced and replace the nozzle , filter, pump screen and gasket at the same time . you dont want to empty 100-275 gal of oil in your house the expense from the clean up will make you do back flips especaily if it contaiminates the soil
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