The risk of finding an oil tank means you should always get a tank search when buying a house built before 1985, or if the neighborhood existed before 1985.

You should get an oil tank search during the inspection period when buying a home because finding a tank during the tank sweep lead to three main problems:

  • Monetary Cost
  • Problems selling the house
  • Health hazards

Buying a home with oil heat can end up costly. Finding an oil tank buried on the property can result in an expensive remediation. What buyers often want is an official certification of decommissioning from the Oregon DEQ. These tanks have been in the ground for decades and exposed to soil moisture which may create rust. Many of these tanks have leaked oil into the surrounding soil over time. Most leaks are small and shown to be harmless after further investigation, but not all.
The cost for getting a DEQ certification of oil tank decommissioning for an Oregon oil tank starts at about $1,000. This cost can rise from there depending on the extent of contamination, in contrast the cost to get a tank search is only $125.

When buying a home with an aboveground oil tank you should always beware of possible underground tanks buried outside. Keeping the oil burning furnace and getting an above ground tank to replace a failing underground tank is commonly a chosen course of action.

You or your clients don’t want to be the ones paying for this cleanup, and by scheduling a tank search during the inspection period you can avoid paying for the decommissioning and any remediation that is needed. Home buying the right way will make home selling later on much easier.


Many people who want to buy a home with financing find it much more difficult to get a loan if there are Oregon records of oil tank leakage but no DEQ certification. People selling a home may find it harder to sell a home without addressing their buried oil tanks.

Banks and lenders don’t want to give loans on houses with known tanks that aren’t certified. Without a mortgage many buyers cannot purchase a home and most sellers are obliged to pay for decommissioning their oil tanks.


Leaking oil tanks can be a health hazard for you or your family if you live next to an oil tank that had leaked. Underground heating oil tanks are usually near the outside of the home. For this reason, if they leak enough the spill can spread under the foundation.
If this is the case constituent molecules from the fuel can off-gas into the air inside the home where they are inhaled by the people living in the home. Examples of chemicals often found in heating oil include: Naphthalene, benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylene, and some polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.

What if you don’t think there is a tank?

When you get a professional and effective oil tank search through a reputable company such as Rush Locates you will get a document detailing the findings of the search. This can go with your permanent property records and when you decide to sell the house gain in the future it is one thing you don’t need to worry about.

Get a tank search

Schedule Online Anytime of Day, Any Day of the Week.

Rush Locates will alert you to any object which may present a hazard later. Any large metallic objects without filling can collapse due to rust and stress. In this case, common objects found include: cesspools, septic tanks, & drywells. If these vessels are without backfilling inside them then they present a future sinkhole hazard.

Call it what you want, an Oregon oil tank sweep, Portland tank search, heating oil tank locate, or underground storage tank scan. At a cost of $125 the oil tank search from Rush Locates LLC is little compared to the price of a house and the greater knowledge you gain with your detailed report.