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tank in the garage

Big Will
Big Will Member Posts: 396
To start with I work in the northern San Fransisco bay area.  In this area nobody has oil anything. As far as I know I am the only contractor in Sonoma or Marin county that services oil equipment. With that in mind the inspectors don't know what to do when questions come up. In this case I have a house on the coast were the tenant called the county to complain about not having heat and the oil tank being in the garage.  The county inspector already came out to look at it. However no one can tell us if the oil tank in the garage is OK or not. In the state code book there is nothing that I can see regarding tank placement. The furnace has been delivered but since the tenant opened up this can of worms we cannot open a permit until the head county inspector approves it. Other than piping the vent to the outside and having bollards in front of the tank so it does not get bumped by a car I can see no reason it should not be in the garage. 


  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,899
    What Codes

    are used in your area? 
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
  • icesailor
    icesailor Member Posts: 7,265
    Oil Tank in Garage:

    You should pose this question at Firedragon. George is knowledgeable on these codes. He specializes in New England but oil things are covered under a NFPA code. I just don't remember which one. That's probably what they want. These codes are usually based on some NFPA code.

  • meplumber
    meplumber Member Posts: 678
    NFPA 31

    31 covers the oil heating industry.  To the best of my knowledge, and I have been doing oil for a long time, there is nothing wwrong with an oil tank in the garage. 

    I have installed them in the garage before.  Provisions have to be made for protection.  If the tank is above the burner, then an oil safety valve must be used.

    Give a look to NFPA 31. 
  • billtwocase
    billtwocase Member Posts: 2,385
    best thing

    would be to first start with whatever town department governs the equipment, It should be Fire Prevention to start, Find out how to go about the permitting process, and overkill the install. Lally columns are code here, and being in flood zones in my area, cable the tank down to the floor. It needs to be concrete, and possibly create a containment lip around the perimeter of the tank. If the garage does not have a door wide enough to get a vehicle in, like a standard entry door, no lally columns should be needed. Swing joints on everything, and the garage should already have fire code sheetrock or equivalent. Always ask what they want to see, then do that little bit more. They're happy, tenants happy, you're happy.  Good luck
  • Big Will
    Big Will Member Posts: 396
    double wall tank

    Is what the fire department wanted. The building inspector really had no input other than to pass it on. So the existing tank is going to get changed out for a double wall tank and bollards added to protect it. The owner is getting the short end here. It is going to cost more to solve the tank problem than the original quote to change the furnace. 
  • icesailor
    icesailor Member Posts: 7,265
    Double Wall Tank:

    I don't know of any regulation in NFPA that says you must use a double wall tank. I think they are out of line. Unfortunately, some firemen and others in authority are like those guys who we went to school with who had to have a beating on a regular basis because they didn't know when to shut up or keep their place in an orderly society. Unfortunately, many grow up and take positions of authority where they can get back at their perceived tormentors. Pay back is a ****. For us.

    He, the fire person should be far more concerned about earthquake protection than a double wall tank.

    Where I work, we had an inspector that fit this description. he had a sign on the wall in his office. It said, "Arguing with an inspector is like wrestling with a greased pig. You have no idea how much fun the pig is having". He was proud of that sign.

    You could make an appeal but they would just bust you some other way.

    The reason some dislike Gubment is because of idiots like this and no one who pulls on their leash.
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