By Tina & Bobby Mapes
It’s the middle of the winter and we’ve been already visited by some of those frigid Arctic cold fronts that can play havoc on fuel oil tanks and heating systems, particularly if you have an outside fuel storage tank.
In extremely cold weather, the #2 fuel oil that our customers use to heat their homes and businesses can gel, which can spell big trouble for the home or business owner.
With such fluctuation of temperatures, and even as it sits in warmer weather, fuel oil can also take on moisture that forms from tank condensation that can put water into your fuel oil. This moisture will then separate from the oil and create a water-oil interface that will plug strainers and burners with a sludge-like mass.
This sludge, which forms a varnish-like deposit, first builds up on the bottom of the tank, and then moves into the preburner system of the heating unit which contains strainers, fuel heaters and burner nozzles that then become clogged. The heater is then forced to get hotter in order to heat the oil up to the proper temperature, which overtaxes the system, eventually resulting in the failure of the heating unit.
Also, this water condensation problem can also result in a growth in bacteria in a fuel oil storage tank, which will start to corrode both various components in the heating system as well as the tank itself.
The result: first a dramatic decrease in fuel economy which at close to $4.00 a gallon is something you can’t afford. Then, if the fuel oil and the storage tank remains not treated, there’s an expensive mechanical bill, or even a more costly replacement of your heating system in your future.
One way for outside storage tank owners to avoid this condensation and sludge build up during very cold weather is to substitute or mix a lighter grade Kerosene-put that can be very expensive. There’s a big difference in the price of fuel oil and kerosene.
The best and less costly solution is to add additives to your outside fuel tank to prevent both the gelling of the oil and corrosion to the fuel tank and damage to the heating system.
We can provide a BBD-600-winter additive; one can per 275 gallons, which will prevent the formation of sludge and condensation in an outside fuel tank up to -18 degrees below zero.
Black Bear Fuel Oil also provides its fuel oil customers with both indoor and outdoor oil tanks an additive called Fuelright to coats an oil storage tank to prevent corrosion.
Using these additives as part of a regular maintenance of your heating system is the smartest, and in the long run, least costly way to run your home or business with fuel oil #2.
Respond to this email or call Black Bear Fuel Oil today at to arrange for one of our highly skilled and experienced technicians to add these additives to your oil storage tanks and perform a regular maintenance on your heating system..
Play it safe so you don’t have to worry about the colder temperatures that are a trademark of a typical Sullivan County winter.
Tina & Bobby