# How do you know the oil man is telling truth?

Discussion in 'Home energy' started by Frantheman, May 3, 2006.

1. ### FranthemanGuest

Wondering if anyone can help with this, I have oil central heating and am wondering is there any way of telling whether you have gotten the amount of oil you are paying for?

The reason I am asking is because a neighbour of mine suggested that he gets his oil at half price because he knows a couple of "rogues" who leave people short? He has told me he will get me a fill also, but alas I have a conscience and cannot do it knowing I may well be stealing from others who have paid.

I know they have a clocking card on the tank, and they clock it at zero and again when the tank is full, but does it work accurately, how do you know.

The last tank full I got was 20euro cheaper than everywhere else and from a different supplier than I usually get, but seems to have run out far quicker than usual, possible paranoia or maybe not!!

2. ### DOBBER22Frequent Poster

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Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

3. ### z107Guest

Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

You can get a guage for your oil tank, that runs along the outside. Using this, coupled with some simple calculus, you should be able to determine how much oil you've received.

4. ### trionaFrequent Poster

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157
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

We ran out of oil after a few weeks in our new house (first experience with oil central heating!). We used a rough/unscientific method. We got a stick and dipped the tank, before we got a refill, therefore we got the level at which the heating stops. We then got 500L delivered and dipped the tank again. We now have a stick with two marks (~0L and ~500L) - gives a reasonable estimate of the amount in the tank.

This is of course dependent on the first amount of oil being delivered by an honest company!!

Hope this helps!

5. ### bertsonFrequent Poster

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398
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

You should receive a print out from a meter on the lorry.
This tells you how much was delivered.
Unless they have 'doctored' the meter, then you should know

6. ### ClubManFrequent Poster

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43,767
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

A dipstick and some basic calculations based on the before and after (delivery) situations should clarify what you have been delivered. I'm not sure that calculus is necessary - simple multiplication should do. Unless you want to work out the rate at which the oil is flowing or something like that. Don't forget that 1 cubic meter = 1,000 litres.

7. ### penangFrequent Poster

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90
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

I have fitted a guage that gives a reading inside the house. The guage fits into the tank and the meter plugs into an ordinary 13amp socket inside the house.

8. ### FranthemanGuest

Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

Thanks all for info, I am getting 500l this week so I will definitely measure before and after depths of tank.

Penang, does your meter tell you how much oil is in the tank?
I know you can get guages to let you know when tank is nearly empty.

9. ### penangFrequent Poster

Posts:
90
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

yep - it goes from 9 ( full) to e (empty)

10. ### FranthemanGuest

Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

I know what you are saying, but you still can't tell whether you have been given the requested 500l or whether he is short changing you by 50l?

11. ### penangFrequent Poster

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90
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

correct - sorry. but i'm sure you can get ones that will tell you. I got this one from my oil man....

12. ### ajapaleModerator

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7,704
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

I get a printed "ticket" from the meter which shows litres delivered.

I know the larger oil companies rely on the meter for stock control and also to pay commission to the driver on the basis of the amount delivered and the number of deliveries made. The oil companies operate on very tight margins (some times a fraction of a cent per litre) and are very stict on stock control.

I dont imagine there is much scope for fraud with restect to the truck driver.

I think that the meters are calibrated regularily and that the calibration is checked by the NSAI.

13. ### Joe NonetyFrequent Poster

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414
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

The density of kerosene is 817g per litre so 500L should weigh 64 stone. Add another 3 stone for the tank and so a seesaw with 4 big men on one side should balance with the tank.

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14. ### z107Guest

Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

I have an oval type oil tank. These are a bit harder to calibrate.

15. ### owenmGuest

Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

The meter on the delivery truck is usually correct, the 'fiddle' is done so;
You order 500L
oilman sets meter to zero, starts pumping into your tank and stops at 450L.
Then takes nozzle and puts it into the truck where they fill the trucks forming a loop - delivering back into the truck for the final 50L. Voila - meter shows 500L but 450 delivered. This is done 5 times giving him 250 L to sell on....

16. ### Ned_ieFrequent Poster

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450
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

to sell on at a very nice profit!!!!

17. ### ClubManFrequent Poster

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43,767
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

Surely the meter does not count backflow? As I have said here and elswhere a simple dipstick test and some basic sums will clarify whether or not you have received the correct amount if you are in doubt and/or paranoid.

18. ### Ned_ieFrequent Poster

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450
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

No - not a backflow. The oil flows through the pump along the pipe and into the oil tanker again.

19. ### ClubManFrequent Poster

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43,767
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

Oh - I see -I missed the bit about the "loop". There's an easy way to spot this so - just watch the bloke filling your tank. If he gets up on the lorry with the hose they you know there's something up! I'd still recommend the dipstick double check if you are not satisfied.

20. ### glenwalshRegistered User

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17
Re: How do you know the oil man is telling truth??

I have a 1000L oil tank and my ex oil man managed to fit 1300L oil into it even though the tank had some oil (around 200L) in it. You do need to keep an eye on them.