If you have recently moved to a home with an oil boiler system, then you will need to have heating oil delivered to your home on a regular basis. Many heating oil companies will set up regular billing with you or they will offer a cash on delivery service. To receive your delivery, you will need to call the heating oil business in advance. When you do this, you should also do a few things to make sure your tank is ready for the delivery.
Clean Off The Tank
Heating oil is obviously needed in the winter, and this means most of your deliveries are likely to occur once snow has fallen around your house. If snow has fallen on your above ground oil tank, then it is wise to clear the snow from the tank before the delivery. The cap will be located directly on the top of the tank. This is where oil will need to be added to the tank during your delivery. Snow may fall in your tank through the cap, and water will mix with your fuel oil. Under extremely cold conditions, the water can enter the supply line and freeze. This will prevent oil from reaching your boiler and your heating system will stop working.
Generally, the water will sink to the bottom of the tank and stay there. The water will mix with oil during a delivery though, and flow into the supply lines. If the water does not freeze, then the water can substantially reduce the efficiency of the heating system. Also, if too much water enters the boiler, then the system may not fire properly. Use a shovel to remove snow from the top of the tank and also use a towel to wipe water from the cap.
Reduce Water Concerns
Keep an eye on the weather forecast before your oil delivery. If snow, sleet, or rain are in the forecast, then water can still end up in the tank. You should prepare for this by investing in a product that can remove the water. There are several different products that can help with this. They are useful if you feel that only a small amount of water has entered the tank. A dispersant is one product that is an additive placed in the oil tank. The dispersant forces water to break up into small particles that disperse throughout the heating oil. The water then moves through the system with the oil. The oil will carry very small amounts of the water at one time, and this helps to reduce freezing and firing issues. This additive should be added immediately after your oil delivery, so make sure to buy it ahead of time.
Another product called a water worm can be secured in the tank before the delivery service. This device is a small cloth tube that absorbs water and keeps it from moving through the oil supply line. Drop the worm through the top oil cap while holding on to the attached strings. Allow the worm to sit on the bottom of the tank and then tie the strings around the cap opening. Replace the cap when you are done.
Test The Gauge
Before you receive an oil delivery, you should also make sure the gauge is working. The oil gauge indicates how much oil is currently in the tank, and this gauge moves as the tank is being filled. If you opt for a delivery service where the tank is filled every few weeks, then the gauge may be used during the service to note when the tank is full.
To test the gauge, twist off the plastic cover that sits over the oil gauge and gently press down on the gauge with your finger. The gauge should move downward and then pop back into place. When you press on the gauge, a connected metal pipe will force a small air filled bobber to sink into the oil that is left in the tank. When you release your finger, the bobber moves upward to sit on top of the oil. This forces the metal attachment and the gauge to register the correct level of oil.
In some cases, the metal pipe will detach from the bobber or it will loosen from the outer gauge part of the device. The gauge will not work properly to show the appropriate level in the tank. If the gauge does not pop back into position when you press it, then this will indicate a broken gauge. Inform your heating oil delivery professional when he or she arrives. A yardstick may be placed in the tank to assess the oil level so the tank is not overfilled.
For more information, contact a heating oil supplier like Cash Oil.