How to Properly Store Fuel and Prevent Leaks
Fuel consumption has begun to rebound after a drop during the pandemic. With demand increasing again, many petrol station owners will soon need to expand their fuel storage capacities.
Every petrol station has fuel storage tanks, and fuel tanks require the owner to take specific measures to avoid leaks, contamination, and other possible hazards. So what are a few steps we recommend for doing so?
Monitor and Inspect
Fuel tanks, mainly underground fuel tanks, are prone to corrosion. Some types of fuel can eat away at older underground fuel tanks causing leaks and spills to occur. By paying close attention to your fuel tanks and checking on them frequently, you’ll notice small leaks and prevent potential spills sooner. Some areas of both underground and above-ground fuel tanks you want to pay extra close attention to are the foundation, connections, tank walls, fill points, dip points, inspection points, and pipes.
Location is Everything
Before you think about installing a fuel storage tank, you’ve got to do some research. Know everything you can about the area you want to place it in and ensure it’s a safe environment. It is also imperative that you put fuel tanks at a reasonable distance from drinking water or other water sources. Failure to do so will increase the potential harm done if a leak or spill does happen. If one of your fuel tanks leaks and contaminates local water, you could end up facing legal action and being forced to close your business.
Bring the experts in
Checking the integrity of fuel storage tanks is a complicated undertaking, and it is always best to have an expert check your tanks for you. This is a worthwhile investment as the money you spend on bringing in a specialist consultant compared to the money you could lose correcting any issues caused by a leak or spill will be far less.
You can significantly extend the lifespan of your fuel storage tanks by having them relined. Making sure you are reconciling your fuel stock through SIRA makes it easier to detect leaks or spills, allowing you to fix them before they cause any further damage. ServoPro members can access SIRA through our partnership with EMS.
To repair or replace?
A leaking fuel tank creates an environmental hazard and costs you money. Not only are you liable for cleanup costs, but you are also quite literally watching your money drain away. If a leak is discovered in a fuel tank, your first instinct may be to replace it immediately.
But replacement can be cumbersome and expensive. In a lot of cases, it is better to reline your existing tanks. Most fuel storage tanks have an average lifespan of about 25 years, so if yours is significantly younger than that, you should consider relining over replacement.
Remember, the name of the game is prevention. Ensuring that fuel is stored correctly and working to prevent leaks is, in the long run, cheaper, safer, and more innovative.
If you would like to discuss getting your tanks relined or need to get your fuel tanks inspected, ServoPro members are reminded we have cost-effective solutions for this.