Ilenna Tai's
Real Estate Knowledge Center:

Underground Fuel Tanks

As of May 1, 2007, all existing fuel oil storage tanks (aboveground and underground) and associated appliances must undergo a comprehensive inspection. In addition to the requirement for annual maintenance (maintenance should also be in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions), a comprehensive inspection must be performed on all existing fuel oil storage tanks and associated appliances, at least once every 10 years; otherwise fuel oil distributors cannot supply fuel oil. Fuel oil distributors are required to prepare a report of each comprehensive inspection performed on a fuel oil storage tank and associated appliance(s) and to keep a copy of the most recent report.

Some insurance companies refuse to insure properties with underground oil tanks The Fuel Oil Regulation (Ontario Regulation 213/01) puts into effect strict guidelines for property owners to follow to help prevent the environmental damage caused by oil tanks leaking into the ground. For example, fuel oil distributors cannot supply fuel oil to an underground tank unless it is registered with the TSSA. Regulations have also been established for when underground tanks must be removed or upgraded depending on their age, and even a tank that is no longer in use must be removed within two years of disuse no matter how old it is. October 1, 2006 was the first deadline for removal or upgrade of underground fuel oil tank systems aged 25 years and more as of October 1, 2001. So far, tanks in the basements of homes (provided that they are free-standing and not in direct contact with backfill material), or above-ground, do not have to be registered and the legislation has not set an age at which above-ground tanks must be replaced. However, insurance companies still may not be willing to insure an older tank.

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