How Much Does it Cost to Remove an Oil or Water Tank?

Typical Range:

$538 - $1,872

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 643 HomeAdvisor members. Embed this data

How We Get This Data

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  • Homeowners use HomeAdvisor to find pros for home projects.
  • When their projects are done, they fill out a short cost survey.
  • We compile the data and report costs back to you.

Published January 10, 2022

Written by HomeAdvisor.

Oil Tank Removal Cost

Removing an oil, fuel or water tank costs $1,198 on average and typically ranges between $538 and $1,872. Aboveground storage tank (AST) removal runs in the $300 to $1,500 range. An underground storage tank (UST) removal costs $1,000 to $3,500. For hazardous liquid storage and petroleum, add another $500 to $1,800 for soil testing and $500 to $10,000+ for remediation.

Both rural businesses and homeowners use water and fuel storage tanks when municipal and county fuel and water supplies can’t keep up with demand or just don’t exist. Tanks range from metal with lining to commercial grade plastics. Over time, they may degrade, leak or become obsolete, necessitating removal.

Average Cost to Remove Oil Tank

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National Average $1,198
Typical Range $538 - $1,872
Low End - High End $300 - $4,100

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 643 HomeAdvisor members.

Underground Oil Tank Removal Cost

550 gallons or less $1,000 - $2,000
1000 gallons $1,600 - 2,500
1500 gallons $2,200 - 2,700
2000 gallons $2,400 - $2,900
3000 gallons $3,000+

*This doesn’t include soil testing or remediation costs.

Water or fuel tank replacement costs $1,500 to $2,500 on average. You might consider replacing your old fuel tank with a new one rather than just removal, since you’ll already have the hole open and it’ll require far less work than doing removal and installation separately.

Buried Gas Tank Removal Cost

Removing a buried gas tank costs $1,000 to $3,000 or more. It has the same cost factors as an oil tank. For USTs, underground storage tanks, think fuel vs. water. The largest difference in price is whether it was storing hazardous materials or not. If it was leaking, you’ll need soil testing and possible remediation of the ground around the tank. This is less likely with gas than oil.

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Basement Oil Tank Removal Cost

Removing a basement oil tank costs anywhere from $500 to $1,500. For tanks buried at least halfway, expect to pay $2,500 or more. The contractor needs to dismantle and partially demolish the tank in your basement to fit the pieces through a window or out a door. So long as the tank hasn’t leaked, you won’t need to do extensive soil testing or remediation.

Above Ground Oil Tank Removal Cost

Removing an aboveground storage tank (AST) that held oil runs $300 to $1,000. Price ranges reflect a couple of factors:

  • Current oil in tank. Needs both removal and disposal, increasing the price.

  • Size and accessibility. Expect to pay more if it’s harder to access it. You may need to remove fencing and redo landscaping.

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Oil Tank Decommissioning or Abandonment Costs

Oil tank decommissioning or abandonment costs anywhere from $1,000 to $3,000 or more, depending the size of the tank. Abandonment leaves the tank in place, but cleans it, fills it with concrete or foam and tests the underlying and surrounding soil.

You have three main fill options:

  • Foam: Reaches more areas of the tank than concrete or sand. It’s mixed in a truck and uses a wand at the end of a long hose, so it’s easy to fill in hard to reach places, like a basement.

  • Concrete slurry: Solidifies in the tank. Some mixtures claim to fill everything and leave no air holes.

  • Sand: Not typically used anymore.

The process for abandoning a tank generally follows these steps:

  1. Light excavation and cutout of the tank to access it.

  2. Drain and wash the inside.

  3. Cut “coupons” out of the bottom to test the soil.

  4. Fill with foam or concrete.

Heating Oil Tank Removal Costs Near You

State Average Range
New Jersey $1,000 - $2,300
Connecticut $900 - $4,800
Pennsylvania $600 - $2,000
New York $800 - $1,800
Minnesota $800 - $2,200
Washington $850 - $1,500
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Underground Water Storage Tank Removal Cost

Water tank removal cost $300 to $1,500 or more. Since they don’t contain any hazardous chemicals or fuels, you don’t need to do any soil testing or remediation. Because of this, hard to access or cost prohibitive projects might run quite a bit less to just leave them in place. If you’re worried about ground stability, you can have them filled with concrete or foam.

UST Removal Cost Factors

The cost factors you’ll run into for removing a UST include:

  • UST or LUST?: $10,000-$100,000. A Leaking Underground Storage Tank (LUST) requires soil testing and often remediation.

  • Tank size: The smaller the tank, the less you’ll pay. This includes both removal and abandonment.

  • Accessibility: The easier it is to access and get earth-moving machinery to, the less you’ll pay.

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DIY Residential Storage Tank Removal vs. Hire a Pro

Removing a water tank might make an excellent weekend of DIY digging, but fuel and other hazardous materials often require a special permit or licensed professional. Experienced pros take steps to ensure that removal complies with all regulations regarding potential soil and water contamination and the disposal of leftover fuel and contaminated tank parts. Find a local oil tank removal service for an inspection and quote.

FAQs

Why would I need to remove a storage tank?

You would need to remove a storage tank for a variety of reasons:

  • Government regulation: Some locations require removal for tanks past their useful life.

  • Safety: Hazardous substances can get into the soil and contaminate drinking water, which creates a problem for the environment and well water.

  • House sale: In some places, house sales require oil tank reporting. In some cases, a municipality may block property sales until they can certify removal or abandonment. Often, you only need an inspection to make sure it isn’t leaking.

Does homeowner’s insurance cover oil tank removal?

In most cases homeowner’s insurance does not cover oil tank removal. Talk to your insurance agent to find out if yours will or not.

How do you dispose of an oil tank?

A professional usually takes them to a salvage yard for recycling, otherwise, local landfills often take clean, empty tanks.

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