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How Big Of A Heating Oil Tank Do I Need For My Home?

heating oil tank size massachusetts

An average single-walled steel oil tank will last 15-20 years on average, which means that many people reading this may be due – or maybe even overdue – for a heating oil tank upgrade. But what size heating oil tank do you need? Let’s take a look.

  • The most common size for a residential heating oil tank size is 275 gallons; storage tanks may also come in different sizes depending on whether they’ll be installed above or below ground. Some other common above-ground tanks include 288, 340, 420, 500, 550, 675, and 1000 gallons (underground tanks can be much larger).
  • One thing to keep in mind is that the nameplate capacity of your tank (the number of gallons in its name) doesn’t represent the number of gallons of fuel that it will actually hold; some allowance must be made for air and debris in the tank. A 275-gallon tank will typically only hold about 235 gallons of heating oil, for example.
  • An industry rule-of-thumb is that one or two-bedroom homes most often need a 275-gallon heating oil tank; three or four bedroom homes need a 300 to 500-gallon tank.
  • Other sizing factors to consider when shopping for a heating oil tank replacement include:
    • Physical space: Some homes can’t fit larger heating oil tanks; be sure to measure your space before you start to shop for your tank.
    • Family planning: As your family grows, so does your energy consumption; better to plan for this in advance if you can.
    • Lifestyle references: Is your family eco-conscious? Do you spend long stretches away from home? Do you have elderly people under your roof that prefer a warmer house? All of these factors affect the amount of heating oil you need – and how big a tank your tank should be.

Once you’ve thought about these sizing factors, you’ll have a better idea where to begin your search for a heating oil tank upgrade. To learn more about other considerations, including tank construction materials, optimal heating oil tank placement and more, contact a W.H. Riley & Son heating expert today.