Why Is a Tank Scan Important?
Chances are, you were unaware that an oil tank existed in your yard when you purchased your house. Tanks often go unnoticed or unreported in an appraisal and inspection. They can remain underground for several decades. As a result, they become a liability to the homeowner and other residents in the immediate neighborhood. There can be tanks in multiple homes in the same area.
Underground storage tanks and heating oil tanks typically have a lifespan of 10-20 years. Over time, the moisture in the ground causes the tank material to break down causing a leak of a hazardous substance.
There are two main reasons why you should schedule a professional tank scan:
1. Mortgage Requirements
Mortgage lenders will not approve loan requests on properties that contain abandoned or untested oil tanks. Whether you are trying to buy or sell a house, the loan application may be denied if an inspector discovers a buried oil tank.
2. Environmental Damage
A gradual leak that occurs over several years can seep into groundwater, which carries it to surface water. Groundwater may become unusable for consumption or irrigation. A single tank can have a far-reaching impact on the environment – not just your yard. The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has requirements for testing and clean-up of underground storage tanks and heating oil tanks. Alpha Environmental is certified, licensed, insured and bonded to assist you through the entire process.
Do I Need an Oil Tank Sweep?
It is nearly impossible to determine if you need a residential oil tank scan, as most tanks are buried deep into the ground and out of sight. However, there are some signs that an oil tank scan is necessary.
For instance, any house built between 1900 and 1985 is automatically a candidate for an oil tank sweep, as tank installation was standard practice during that period. If a vent pipe, fill pipe, or above-ground tank is present in the yard, there is a good chance that a UST is just below.
You may also notice symptoms of a leak, such as:
- Increased heating costs
- Oil sheen in groundwater
- Oil stain spots
- A strong, constant smell of oil
- Dead vegetation above or near the tank
Types of Storage Tanks We Scan
Alpha Environmental certified technicians are licensed and have extensive experience sweeping residential and commercial storage tanks. Two types of tanks that we scan include: