Your home’s oil tank is vital to heating your home during the fall and winter. Oil tanks hold petroleum which, over time, can be altered into sludge. Identifying oil sludge in your oil tank is very important to maintaining a well working and safe system in your home. 

What is Oil Sludge?

When petroleum is exposed to things like light, air, and heat, it begins to change. This exposure usually happens while the oil tank isn’t being used. During this dormant time, the petroleum particles will grow larger and larger as it’s exposed to the elements. Eventually, the petroleum will turn into a thick sludge that doesn’t act like normal petroleum in your oil tank. 

Why Should I Be Worried About Oil Sludge?

Oil sludge includes rust, debris, and the thick petroleum in your oil tank that we mentioned above. Oil sludge happens frequently in today’s world, but it wasn’t always that way. That’s because the oil used in oil tanks has changed over the years and now contains more residue and particles that lead to oil sludge. Oil sludge can cause your heating system to break down entirely, leaving you in the cold. If your system doesn’t break down from the sludge, it will be running inefficiently, causing higher bills for you in the long run. 

Preventing Sludge

The easiest way to prevent sludge is to refill your oil tank before it gets low. Since you have to schedule oil deliveries for your tank, you should schedule before you tank is close to being low just to be safe. You can also put an oil treatment into your tank before new oil is added. These oil treatments work to break down any sludge that has been built up. Once the sludge has been broken down, it will be carried up the lines of your tank and burned along with the other oil. It’s best to add an oil treatment before the winter season begins so that by the end of the season, your tank is free of sludge. 

Arlex Oil: Home Heating Oil Experts in Burlington, Cambridge & Medford, MA

If you believe your oil tank isn’t performing well due to oil sludge build-up, contact the professionals at Arlex Oil to inspect the tank. If the build-up is too severe, it may have to be manually removed. Sludge build-up can be disastrous for your oil tank, but it doesn’t have to be! Proper maintenance, regular oil being added, and oil treatments will keep your oil tank working well for years to come. Contact Arlex Oil today to learn about our annual oil tank services & Oil Tank Protection Program by calling 781-862-3400 or fill out our online contact form