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What Is The Lifespan Of An Underground Storage Tank?

Underground storage tanks (USTs) are popular for storing everything from fuel to chemicals. These tanks are essential infrastructure components. But like things that are out of sight and out of mind, one question is how long they can last buried or beneath our feet.

For property owners and developers, understanding the lifespan of these underground vaults is vital for public safety and planning.

Material Matters

The integrity of an underground storage tank largely depends on the construction material. Older tanks installed in the 1900s featured bare steel. Prone to corrosion over time, these steel containers could last 20 to 30 years before breaking down.

Modern tanks, however, have a leg up. They are constructed with corrosion-resistant materials like fiberglass or coated steel, extending service life to three decades or longer. However, lifespan isn't just determined by the exterior; what's stored inside is a factor. 

Storing corrosive substances or water can accelerate a tank's decline. Therefore, conducting regular tank inspections, maintenance, and monitoring are non-negotiable care.

Hidden Hazards

While underground storage tanks have benefits like saving space and reducing fire hazards, they're not without risks. Leaks and spills from deteriorating tanks can contaminate groundwater or soil, posing environmental and health risks. It's a reminder of the importance of timely inspections and updates, especially for properties with a storied past.

Frequently Asked Questions about Underground Storage Tanks

Q: How do I know if my property has an underground storage tank?

A: Signs like old fill pipes or vent lines can indicate a UST's presence. Professional inspection services, like those offered by demolition and razing experts, can help uncover and assess hidden tanks.

Q: What should I do if I find an old underground storage tank on my property?

A: It's crucial to assess the tank's condition. Specialists in demolition and environmental services can evaluate the tank and recommend the best action, removal, abandonment, or continued use with necessary upgrades.

Q: Can I remove an old tank without replacing it? 

A: Yes, you can remove an old tank without replacing it. Professionals can safely decommission and remove it, ensuring the land is safe and ready for use.

Q: Is it necessary to replace an old underground storage tank?

A: It depends on the tank's condition and intended use. If the tank is deteriorating or no longer meets safety standards, replacement or alternative solutions might be the best bet for ensuring safety and compliance.

Help With Underground Storage Tanks

When approaching the concerns of underground storage tanks, knowledge is empowering. Whether dealing with a historic property or planning a new development, Lloyd Nabors Demolition can help with all your underground storage tank removal needs in Texas. 

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