Finally deciding to dig up your home’s oil tank and replace it with a new and improved model is a pretty big one. The project that results might surprise a lot of homeowners, as there can be a lot of sensitive information and moving parts. There’s a lot to make sure you take care of and properly look out for when you’re going to try and remove your home’s oil tank, so we’ll discuss some of the most important tips and strategies that can help you weekend project move forward as seamlessly as possible.

1. Know the Location. It’s incredibly important that you locate your oil tank and know exactly where it is before you begin doing any work. This goes a step beyond just finding your oil tank, however, and also means that you’ve got to know what sort of utility structures are around the area as well. If you just haul off and start digging up your yard, you could wind up seriously upsetting some sort of water or gas line, and then the project that you’ve got on your hands might wind up doubling or even tripling in size and scope. Figure out exactly where your tank is and exactly what’s around it before you get started.

2. Rent Some Equipment. Oil tank removal is easier when you’ve got some heavy machinery to do it, and if your budget permits it’s a very smart idea to get yourself a backhoe. Digging out a structure the size of your oil tank (underground tanks are typically between 5 and 10 thousand gallons) is a pretty big undertaking and if you take a crack at it with nothing but shovels, gloves, and elbow grease then you could find yourself working for a good many more hours than you really need to.

3. Obtain Your Permits. You’re not actually allowed to dig up your yard, whether it’s just because you want to see if you can get to the other side of the world or if it’s because you need to replace your home’s oil tank. Whatever the case, work like this requires the proper permits, so check with your local government and make sure you’ve obtained all the right permissions.

4. Get an Inspection. An inspector’s professional thing is always a good thing, and a lot of cities might even go ahead and require this of you if you’re going to get this kind of work done. Get a professional to come look over your tank once you’ve removed or replaced it, so you can be sure if there’s anything unsafe or unfinished that you need to take care of.

5. Make Plans in Advance. When you decide to remove and/or replace your oil tank, don’t expect to be starting and finishing your work that very weekend. As we’ve discussed, oil tank removal is a pretty sensitive process, and there’s a lot to plan and account for. You can research costs by doing a localized search (“cost of oil tank removal NJ,” for example), and you can call around to local professionals for quotes to give you an idea as to how much your equipment and professional help might cost you. Whatever your methods, it’s best to take a project like this one step at a time.