What is Fuel Oil Contamination and How to Prevent it

Like many homeowners, you may be reliant upon heating oil during the months of winter. This is currently ranked as one of the safest and most efficient sources for residential and commercial heat currently available. Unlike natural gas, heating oil is not combustible. In fact, it is said that a person could actually drop a lit match into a tank that’s been filled with this fuel, and without experiencing any negative reactions. In spite of these things, however, there are still issues that consumers must contend with when using these products. For instance, you may be wondering, “What is fuel oil contamination and how can I avoid it?” To learn more about this subject and the best methods of prevention, keep reading.

All fuel tanks are subject to some manner of corrosion and contamination over time. These issues are ultimately unavoidable, but there are things that consumers can do to delay the onset of troubles, mitigate problems and limit their impact, and keep their fuel supplies safe. Foremost among these is to simply get fuel from a quality supplier.

Many people think that contamination always occurs within their own tanks. When their oil begins to take on a cloudy or murky look and stops functioning like it should, the general assumption is that there are problems with the tank itself. The truth of the matter is that a number of small and lesser known delivery services are actually responsible for these problems. These entities are guilty of selling very low-quality fuel oils and products that have been knowingly adulterated with unbelievable ingredients.

Surprisingly, it is not uncommon for small-sized delivery services to actually mix their heating oils with cooking oils that have been used and obtained from nearby restaurants. In addition to purposefully adulterating their oils in order to increase their profits, many of these companies are storing their inventories is substandard tanks while waiting for deliveries. Even a small amount of time in a dirty, rusty tank can greatly undermine the quality, viability and reliability of these products.

If you are working with a reputable service that has ample options in clean storage for its inventory, you will automatically have a lot less to worry about in terms of contamination and corrosion. Your fuels will be dropped off in a totally clean and usable state. You will only need to stay on top of your own tank maintenance in order to prevent problems from occurring altogether.

One issue that is a bit more difficult to prevent is condensation. Whenever condensation starts forming on the exterior of the tank, there is always the potential to have this water wind up on the inside. Once this occurs, bacterial growth can occur as well.

When contamination becomes an issue, it often creates a thick, viscous substance known as sludge. Sludge can impact the way in which a heater performs by diminishing its overall efficiency. When bacteria are allowed to grow unchecked, this can also negatively impact the overall chemical profile of oils, thereby making them ineffective in their applications.

The best thing that homeowners can do to prevent all of these problems is to have their systems regularly serviced. When searching for a reputable fuel oil delivery company that prides itself in only offering unadulterated fuels of the highest quality, also look for delivery services that offer maintenance and repair solutions as well. This way, you will be able to get everything you need for maintaining an efficient unit, from a single, affordable source.

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