Key Post Easiest way to know when oil tank is empty?

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sueellen

Guest
I recently bought a house which has oil central heating. I am going to rent it out initially. What is the easiest way for tenants to know when the oil tank in the garden is near empty? I was told if it goes to empty it can damage the boiler.
 
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Dowee

Guest
re:

You can buy a sensor, part of which is installed in the house and it indicates how much oil is in the tank. I think most of the companies that supply oil sell them.
 
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sueellen

Guest
You can buy a guage although some of them are not great. The guys delivering the oil are usually the best people to get advice from on which type works best.

Its best not to let the oil run out because it drags up all the dirt from the end of the tank and I think can lead to air locks.
 
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inspired

Guest
level of oil

use a long bambo stick to stick into the oil tank then when you pull it back out the level of oil should be easy to read?!
 
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Guest

Guest
level of oil

> Its best not to let the oil run out because it drags up all the dirt from the end of the tank and I think can lead to air locks.

That's my understanding too - which suggests that a handy gadget would be a gauge that detects when the oil level is low but not right at the bottom and which prevents the system from being used until the oil is replenished. Maybe I'll patent that? ;)
 
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Dan The Man

Guest
level of oil

In my experience working for one the major world oil companies (pump attendant), we would check with a gauged metallic stic doused in talcom powder.

Bamboo stick would be a sufficient substitute (with the powder of course), none of yer fancy stuff!
 
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Murt10

Guest
Re: level of oil

I think the oil tank is usually tilted slightly backwards so the dirt stays at the other end of the tank and not from where your oil comes out.

I was told not to use the central heating until 24 hours after the delivery as all the dirt will be disturbed and come up off the bottom and needs time to settle down again.
 
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dipstik

Guest
frosty weather

In frosty weather, especially in the mornings, you can "see" the level of oil in a tank just by looking at it.
 
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roger mure

Guest
Oil Tank

Be sure to drain some oil from the tap at the back of the tank now and then.
The tap end should be lowest point and you will remove some dirt and condensation.
If this builds up it will get into your filter and the water may get into your oil pump causing problems
 
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edelweiss

Guest
"easiest way to know when oil tank is empty?"

eh...........wait till the house gets cold..............
 
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sueellen

Guest
Heinbloed,

That's some guage - £178.60 = €256.84 - in days not long gone we could have got a fill of oil for that! :D
 

Sue Ellen

Moderator.
Messages
8,181
Re: >>easiest way to know when oil tank is empty?

As its that time of year again for oil and as I have spent too much time on AAM and not ordered a gauge yet just wondering if anyone has any further recommendations for gauges?

I took out hire purchase on a fill this morning (€600) and also decided to put a lock on the lid. As it can only take a light lock just wondering if anyone has a recommendation for a strong locking system for the oil tank?
 

Carpenter

Frequent Poster
Messages
2,607
Re: >>easiest way to know when oil tank is empty?

If you want to use a lock with a heavier shackle you could bore out the holes on the cover of the tank (presuming it's plastic) to fit a bigger lock, but what's the point? If someone really wants to steal your oil they'll just cut the lid off anyway, the lock will only deter the casual "oil thief"! I don't know if those gauges are worth it either they're difficult enough to read from a distance and the plastic ones get less visible with age.
 

samspuds

Registered User
Messages
28
Re: >>easiest way to know when oil tank is empty?

Hi Sueellen

I recommend tying a tennis ball on a length of string when your oil is as low as you want it. Drop the ball into the oil (it will float) then tie something onto the opposite end of the string which is lighter than the ball. Hang this on the outside of the tank near the top. Then when you fill up the tank the ball will float to the top of the tank and the thing hanging on the outside should drop down. The opposite will happen when the tank empties again. So you should see when it gets near the “fill tank level”.

It is worth giving it a tug every now and again to make sure that it is running freely.
Sammy
 

Carpenter

Frequent Poster
Messages
2,607
Re: >>easiest way to know when oil tank is empty?

Sammy, that's a fantastic idea, but could I suggest an improvement? Tennis balls are made from synthetic rubber, which might detiorate in time if submerged in oil. Maybe a small float from an old ballcock, made from plastic would be better?
 

kfpg

Frequent Poster
Messages
182
Re: >>easiest way to know when oil tank is empty?

Samspuds, through where does the string pass freely enough that the outside device falls as the inside device rises, do you make a small hole on the side of the tank, would rainwater get in?
 
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