Unique process provides complete water and debris removal
without taking tanks out of service.
Austin, TX – With ethanol-blended fuel soon on its way to gasoline stations across the country, retailers and commercial operators large and small are beginning to face the realization that their tanks must be in suitable condition prior to the changeover, or they could face a variety of costly problems.
Regulatory and industry standards require that a storage tank receiving new ethanol blended fuels be free of all water, debris and accumulated sodium salts. These standards exist for good reason, according to experts; the presence of these constituents in ethanol-blended fuel poses serious consequences for retailers and their customers – they are simply not compatible with ethanol.
As the nation’s largest underground storage tank testing and compliance services company, Tanknology, Inc. of Austin, TX has been intimately involved with the industry’s leading oil companies in creating specific protocols for tank inspection and ethanol preparation services that are now available nationwide.
According to Allen Porter, President and CEO of Tanknology, the response has been dramatic. “Just in the past month we have contracted with our customers to perform ethanol conversion preparation services on thousands of tanks,” Porter said.
While the federal mandate for ethanol blended fuel is being phased in across the country, much of the US eastern seaboard is expected to be receiving ethanol-blended fuel within the next 90 days.
“Our customers are realizing that the consequences of not being prepared for the introduction of ethanol into their tanks make this a very serious matter,” Porter said, “and they are wise to take it so seriously. Our experience to-date indicates that more than 50% of the tanks we inspect require some level of preparation services before ethanol-blended fuel can be introduced. Add to that that all gasoline storage tanks have some level of water, none of which can be present in ethanol-blended fuels, and it becomes very clear that this is an issue of significant importance to any operator preparing for the transition to ethanol-blended fuel.”
Tanknology’s unique ethanol preparation service provides complete water removal and tank preparation without any interruption in service – tanks remain in operation throughout the process.
According to Zane Miller, Tanknology’s Manager of Fuel Filtration Services for the Eastern Region of the US and one the company’s ethanol conversation specialists, it is extremely important that retailers take this issue seriously and have a thorough tank inspection by a qualified technician, prior to the introduction of ethanol.
“Retailers would be making a mistake to simply rely upon their Automatic Tank Gauge or dipstick to tell them that they don’t have water in their tank and then proceed with the addition of ethanol-blended fuel,” Miller said. “Those tools are simply not reliable when it comes to ensuring that there is no water in the tank, a condition that is required for the introduction of ethanol. In our experience, more than half the time, un-level tanks result in water collecting in an area of the tank that is not detected by the tank gauge.”
“It is widely understood,” Miller said, “that you simply don’t put ethanol-blended fuels into a tank that contains any water. That’s why our ethanol preparation service provides complete water removal.”
When water or debris mixes with ethanol-blended gasoline, the fuel will emulsify, creating a variety of significant fuel system problems. These costly issues include degradation of fuel octane ratings to levels below specification, filter clogging, requiring frequent filter replacement; spoiled fuel and, ultimately, customer vehicle drivability complaints and/or damage.
For more information about Tanknology’s ethanol conversion tank preparation services, call Tanknology at 1-800-964-0110 or visit Tanknology on the web at www.tanknology.com.