Importance of Water Removal from Tanks, Spill Buckets, Submersible Pump Sumps, and Under Dispensers Sumps

Importance of Water Removal from Fuel Storage Tanks

It’s just a little water… what harm can it really do? If you are in the retail petroleum industry, then the answer is - a lot! Water ingress in fuel storage systems such as tanks, spill buckets, submersible pump sumps, and under-dispenser sumps can lead to the growth of microbial bacteria. This can have devastating effects, not just on the storage system but also in terms of product contamination. If water is left in these areas of your fuel storage system without treatment, it can lead to significant damage and financial strain due to equipment replacement costs, loss of revenue, and even damage to your brand if clients become aware of potentially contaminated fuel. It is important to check for water ingress regularly and have it removed by a qualified petroleum service company in Texas, like PumpTex, if anything is found. Let’s take a closer look at why water removal is an important part of site maintenance and gas pump repair in Texas.

Let’s Talk About Corrosion

Did you know that corrosion is one of the most common causes of underground storage tank leaks? That is a headache that nobody wants to have to deal with, as it can result in hefty clean-up costs and serious environmental damage. Corrosion is something that almost always occurs where there is microbial contamination caused by water ingress. The metal components of the tank, dispenser, or other parts of the system begin to corrode, leaving sludge in the tank. Even if your site currently has newer equipment, it will not exempt you from this risk. New tanks are just as prone to microbial contamination corrosion as older systems. It is common to see this type of damage in just 12 to 18 months of a storage tank being installed because water ingress has not been adequately addressed or has gone unnoticed due to a lack of appropriate maintenance checks and inspections. There have even been aggressive cases of corrosion record in just 90 days! It is important for any retail fueling site to work with a reputable petroleum service company in Texas to manage and treat water ingress regularly; otherwise, you could find yourself requiring costly repairs or replacements, not just of the storage tank but also of the pumps, filters, pipes and your dispensers. It is not unheard of for microbial contamination to compromise an entire fuel system.

The Impact on Fuel Dispensers

As noted above, water in your storage system is a problem not only for your tanks but also for the entire fueling system as a whole, including your gas pumps. When sludge, rust, and other debris get left in your storage tanks, it will eventually make its way to the dispensers. Some of the issues we have discovered while performing gas pump repair in Texas have included blocked dispenser filters, malfunctioning dispensers, slow flow, and errors with pre-set volume delivery. All of these are a result of water in the storage tank not being removed and corrosion occurring. The fuel itself is also contaminated, which has been linked to shortening the lifespan of car engine parts and increasing environmental pollution. This can significantly impact your business as customers will not want to use a gas station that they know is selling dirty fuel that can potentially damage their vehicles. It may also leave you at risk of failing to meet local, state, and federal compliance with environmental regulations, which could come with a costly penalty. A petroleum service company in Texas can assist you with necessary compliance checks to help you meet these regulations.

How is Water Entering the Tank?

There are a number of different ways that water can enter your fuel storage system. Some of the typical entry points are tank vent lines, faulty inlet caps, faulty seals, and tank or line integrity failures during tanker deliveries and even during significant periods of heavy rainfall. Even if you have a pressure/vacuum valve on your vent cap, water can still enter the tank when the pressure balances after fuel is dispensed to a customer. All grades of fuel are susceptible to the growth of microbial bacteria, but diesel, in particular, has a reduced sulfur level. Ethanol blended fuel is also at risk and will attract a very specific type of bacteria called acetobacteria.

Even the most well-cared-for fuel tank systems can succumb to water ingress and microbial contamination. It is crucial that you conduct regular testing, maintain a thorough cleaning schedule, and take a proactive approach to monitoring water ingress so that you can move quickly to remove water as soon as it is detected. A petroleum service company in Texas, like PumpTex, can assist with water removal and can help with regular inspections of your storage tank as part of your regular maintenance schedule. We are here to help keep you pumping with all aspects of gas pump repair in Texas - both above and below the ground.

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PumpTex, Inc. was founded in 1997 in the back of a garage with the dream of bringing a new level of customer service to the retail petroleum service industry. Over the years, we have grown to become a valuable resource to our customers. Many consider us to be the first responders of the retail petroleum service industry!

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