Heating oil is something that is most effective for heating a building, but there are always some precautions you must take. While it does not have the flash point of gasoline or propane, you should still be careful with handling this fuel and the equipment used to contain and ignite it. There are a few no-no's when it comes to handling and dealing with all of the aspects of heating oil. Here are a few and how to avoid them.
Removing and Replacing the Oil Tank
In an industrial or commercial setting, oil tanks are quite large. Yet, over time, they tend to wear out and they will need to be removed and replaced. The good news is that they are recyclable metal scrap. The bad news is that you need to remove most of the oil inside before the tank can be hauled off. In this case, that is a monumental task that may require cutting the tank down to size. Avoid using a welder's torch and opt for a reciprocating saw that has a long enough, strong enough blade made to cut steel. In doing so, you will reduce all risks of starting a fire or a toxic billow of smoke from burning fuel residue as the tank is cut up and removed.
Bleeding the Line While Pressing the Ignition
This seems like a real no-brainer, but you would be surprised at how often someone asks why they are not getting ignition while bleeding the line. Bleeding the fuel line helps remove air bubbles and residue that prevent your oil furnace from igniting and working properly. If you are trying to bleed the line and ignite the furnace at the same time, there is no way that is going to work. Bleed the line first with each new full tank of heating oil your company has delivered. Then try pushing the ignition switch/button. Only try a couple of times too, or you will flood the fire box. Try again after about twenty to thirty minutes when the line has had time to get the fuel moving through it.
Flooding the Fire Box
The fire box in an oil burning furnace or oil burning machinery is akin to the old school car engines that needed to be primed before you could turn over the engine. You have to get just enough fuel to the engine (or fuel box) to get the equipment started. Once it starts, the system takes over, pulling the fuel through the line by itself. Just as you could flood those old car engines by pumping the gas pedal too much, so too can you flood the fire box by pressing the fuel button too many times. If the furnace does not start right away, wait. It is frustrating, but it is better than flooding it and not have it start for several hours.