Do I Need a Tank Sweep?
You only get 1 chance to avoid this costly mistake!
Are you buying a home that has oil heat? How about a home built before 1975 that has natural gas? If so, then you may have a buried underground oil tank.
There may be an underground oil tank on your property that you are not aware of. When your purchasing a new home, the seller may not be aware of an existing underground oil tank or may conveniently forget to disclose it. Oil tanks that have been buried for several years are usually corroded. Any oil leaking from such tanks contaminate the soil around them and potentially harm your health, can cause tens of thousands of dollars to remediate and your home owners insurance can not only drop you if they found out but will deny a claim for tank removal or remediation.
The only way to locate an abandoned underground tank is with an oil tank sweep.
Signs that there may be a buried tank on your property
What to look for
You may see the presence of an abandoned underground oil tank on your property by looking at telltale signs, such as oily-looking soil, pipes sticking out of the ground, and extra lines entering the basement from outside. If you notice any of these conditions, then there may be an underground oil tank. If your house was built before 1975 and has natural gas heating, then it may have a buried oil tank. If you has oil heat with a tank in the basement, then it may also have buried oil tank
Risks associated with buried tanks
What can go wrong?
Underground tanks that have been abandoned for years are potentially dangerous. They are likely to be leaking oil and contaminating the soil around them. Empty tanks can collapse under the weight of the soil and create sinkholes, which can cause accidents and also endanger your house. While removing a buried tank can cost you some money, not removing it can be very costly indeed. For these reasons, most municipalities require the immediate removal of old buried tanks by the homeowner.
If you have recently bought a property (or are in the process of buying) and the previous owner says that they have removed an abandoned tank, then make sure to obtain the paperwork, including the removal certification from them. This paperwork should be noted in all real estate transactions.
In many cases there is no documentation even after the homeowner has converted their home heating system to a different source than Oil Heat. Furthermore, older town records may be inaccurate.
Locating an abandoned underground oil tank
What to do
If you suspect that there may be an abandoned underground oil tank on your property, then you should hire us to conduct an oil tank sweep starting with a visual inspection. In fact, you should have a tank sweep done immediately after buying a property or before selling your property even if you do not suspect the presence of one to assure there is not an underground storage tank.
Locating an abandoned underground tank involves examining your property for visible signs of buried oil tanks and then sweeping the ground with special magnetometry equipment. Since underground tanks are usually made of steel, these instruments are highly effective in detecting their presence and determining their exact location.
Real estate transactions can really try your patience. If you purchase a home in NJ with an unknown Underground Oil Tank it will eventually become your responsibility down the road. This means not only could you be responsible for an underground tank removal, but you may also be responsible for Site Remediation and or Soil and Groundwater Testing and Remediation if a contamination leak is discovered when removing the Oil Tank.
It is recommended if there is an underground tank present, be sure the seller has current tank insurance and be sure to have it transferred to you BEFORE CLOSING. If no insurance policy exists, you should have it tested, certified and insured by a qualified company PRIOR TO CLOSING.