Take time to check your oil tank

Date published: 04 December 2017

Checking your oil tank this winter can help protect the environment and yourself. Heating oil can cause serious problems, such as polluting rivers, harming wildlife, and contaminating ground and drinking water.

Monthly check

‘Clean-up’ costs of an oil spill can be significant and are not always covered by household insurance policies.

You should check your tank and its pipes once a month and if you find a problem it should be fixed as soon as possible.

You can find more details about what you should do on this page:

If you notice a drop in oil level, don’t assume that oil has been stolen. Leaks of underground fuel lines can often be happening for some time before oil contamination can be seen.

Oil leaks or spills

If your tank is leaking, you should act quickly and contact your insurance company.

Try to stop the oil soaking into ground or going down drains.

Don’t put off taking action or assume the problem will go away. The quicker the leak can be dealt with, the less oil will be lost and damage can be reduced. 

You can get more advice about what to do, including arranging a clean-up, on the oil spills at home page.

To report an oil spill or leak that could affect rivers or coastal waters, you should contact the Northern Ireland Environment Agency’s (NIEA) 24-hour water pollution hotline on:

  • phone: 0800 807060

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