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Does oil sitting in tank decompose?

Joseph_4 Member Posts: 271

 I have oil, live in nyc and want to switch to gas. but would like to leave oil tank in case gas shoots up and oil becomes cheaper (hey-anything can happen right?)

was told oil sitting in tank will turn to sludge and or decompose and cause problems.

during the 5 summer months only a little oil is used each day to heat my domestic water. I have a tankless coil. its been that way for the 11 years i own my house and i never heard this would cause problem. or is it because of that little movement in tank during summer months is enough to protect it?




  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 4,431

    not exactly. But it is possible that oil eating  bacteria could foul it. There are products out there to combat that. Some states require you to ditch that tank if you switch over to gas.... kpc
  • Robert O'Brien
    Robert O'Brien Member Posts: 3,541

    Heating oil degrades over time,much more with recent refining processes than in the past.
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
  • Paul Fredricks_3
    Paul Fredricks_3 Member Posts: 1,557

    I've seen it myself. Had fuel oil in a lift pump tank. Sat for 18 months. The oil lost the red color, there was a nasty black residue on everything, it smelled horrible, and the lift pump seized.
  • Big Ed_4
    Big Ed_4 Member Posts: 2,784
    Over Processed

    The oil refineries where allowed to over heat the oil to gain more of the lighter grade . The problem with the process is the oil has shorter self life . It will start breaking down in six months .... Best off to burn the tank dry and flush out the tank with kerosene . If is an old tank pull it and start fresh .
    I have enough experience to know , that I dont know it all
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