This page provides a brief overview of the Domestic Regulations that need to be addressed when installing or moving a domestic heating oil tank. These are not exhaustive, and full details can be found on the following government websites:
Oil tanks are manufactured either as single-skin or bunded, which is a tank within a tank and provides the most environmental protection as the outer skin should contain the oil in the event of a spillage. If any of the following criteria apply, then you will must install a bunded tank to comply with current regulations:
- Tank capacity will be in excess of 2500 litres
- The tank will be located within ten metres of controlled water. Controlled water includes rivers, streams, lakes, canals, coastal waters, estuaries, and groundwater. This means all water, which is below the surface of the ground in the saturation zone and in direct contact with the ground or subsoil, and any ditches, soakaways, septic tanks and gullies, which could pollute groundwater or reach controlled water through groundwater
- The tank will be installed over hard ground that could enable spillage run-off to reach controlled water at a greater distance. This includes hard-surfaces such as tarmac or concrete which slope towards a drain or other source of controlled water
- The tank will be located where any spillage could run into an open drain or manhole cover
- The tank will be located within fifty metres of a borehole or spring (including wells). Your local authority or regional environmental authority will have information on the location of all water extraction locations, ground water sources or aquifers near to your property
- The tank will be located in a position where the tank vent pipe outlet is not visible from the fill pipe access. Essentially, if the tanker driver is able to see the vent, he will be alerted to any potential danger of overfilling. If he cannot see the tank vent when filling the tank, or the tank will be fitted with a remote fill pipe, then the tank will need to be bunded to contain any spillage.
- The tank will be supplying heating oil to a building other than a single family dwelling, for example to also heat an on site office.
- There are any other potential hazards individual to the site which may constitute a pollution risk.
If any of the following criteria apply to the external siting of the tank or any potential fire risks within the close vicinity of the tank, then you will need to install appropriate fire protection to comply with current domestic regulations. These apply to all heating oil storage below 3,500 litres in capacity. If you require storage above this capacity, then you will need to address additional requirements under commercial regulations. Fire protection of no less than thirty minutes extending 300mm longer than each side of the oil storage tank and 300mm higher than the highest part of the oil storage tank is required if:
- The oil tank will be located within 1.8m of a non-fire-rated building or structure. This includes timber garden sheds and any wall that does not have a minimum thirty minutes fire resistance.
- The oil tank will be located within 760mm of a non-fire-rated boundary. If the tank is to be located against a stone boundary wall, that wall must extend at least 300mm beyond the height and ends of the tank and have thirty minutes of fire resistance
- The oil tank will be located within 1.8m of non-fire-rated eaves of a building
- The oil tank will be located within 1.8m of a construction opening in a building, such as a window or door
- The oil tank will be located within 1.8m of any flue termination
- The oil tank will be installed on a base which does not extend a minimum of 300mm around all sides of the tank. If the existing base does not extend 300mm on all sides of the tank it will need to be extended so that it is 300mm larger than the tank on all sides. The only exception to this base-size rule is where the side and/or end of the base abuts a fire rated structure, such as a building, barrier or boundary, that already extends at least 300mm beyond the extents of the tank in all directions, and in such circumstances the base need only be extended 100mm from the tank to the fire rated structure. Regardless of proximity to fire-rated structures, any exposed sides or ends of the base must still be extended by 300mm.
The above criteria apply to external tanks only. Tanks to be located inside a building must be bunded and contained within a fireproof chamber. For more information on installing tanks internally please either contact us or visit www.oftec.org
Prior to installing any oil storage tank, an OFTEC TI/133D form (based upon the above information) should be completed by a competent, qualified technician. As part of our tank installation free quotation service, we will complete this assessment on your behalf.