But, if inventory is so important, are its measurements being taken seriously enough? As we all know, using a dipstick involves manually dipping a long rod into a tank to determine the amount of fuel inside. You come back smelling awful, especially when handling diesel.
And most service stations do this at in the morning or at night so as to not interrupt the daily operations of the site. Both highly undesirable times. It could be raining. It could be dark. So no worker really likes doing it. But not only is it an inconvenient job that no one wants to do. And they breathe in toxins as the tank is opened to pull the dipstick out.
Injured and sick workers, or dealing with a Workplace Health and Safety lawsuit, is the last thing anybody needs. Not only is it unsafe.
When the only way you can see inside your tank is by manually inserting a measuring rod, holding it at exactly the right angle for every tank for every dip, human error is expected. Some organisations have upgraded their dipsticks to Automatic Tank Gauges ATGs , which measure the fuel inventory from inside the tank. While ATGs are certainly safer and more automated than the dipstick, they are rarely integrated; someone still has to go and manually print off the dip, and transcribe it, so you are still in danger of irregularities.
Switching to a digital fuel inventory method decreases risk and increases reliability. It provides: Safe, hands-off capture of inventory information Accurate and easily accessible measurement of critical tank data Results based on real-time data Being able to access all your critical tank data in real-time also means that if a variance does occur, you do not have to waste time double-checking your inventory measurements.
You have accurate, up-to-date data at your desktop, at your fingertips. With no need for hazardous or unreliable methods.
Cruising How much fuel do you have in your tanks? The fuel gauge says you have half a tank, but do you have enough fuel for your journey? There is a better way to know how much fuel you have, The Dip Stick. A dipstick is a graduated measuring device that tells you exactly how many gallons of fuel or water you have in your tank. Dipsticks can either be un-calibrated measuring the inches of fuel or calibrated measuring the gallons.
Dipsticks are easy to calibrate. Simply start with an empty tank: Add 1 gallon, insert the stick and mark the wet line on the stick. Add 4 more gallons, insert the stick and mark the wet line on the stick. Add 5 more gallons, insert the stick and mark the wet line on the stick. Add 10 more gallons, insert the stick and mark the wet line on the stick. Continue adding 10 more gallons, inserting the stick and marking the wet lines on the stick until the tank is full.
This will give you a dipstick with 10 gallon increments, ending with a 5 gallon mark, and a 1 gallon mark. When you check your tank, you will know if you have less then 1 gallon, less than 5 gallons, or many gallons of fuel present. A calibrated dipstick will accurately tell you exactly how much fuel you have present in your tank. This takes all the guessing out of estimating how much fuel you are carrying at any time. The problem with dipsticks is they make checking the fuel level time consuming.
You need to get the dipstick out, get to the tank, open the top of the tank, put the dipstick in, pull it out, read it, clean the dipstick, close the top of the tank, put the dipstick away. If you are alone and need to leave the helm to do this, you might be away from the helm for too long for safety. If you are in a power boat running along at 20 knots and you take 6 min to perform the task, you just covered 2nm without standing watch. If you take longer to complete the reading, you will cover even more ground!
This proves unsafe and would require you to bring the boat to a stop and check the fuel level while bobbing around in Neutral. The alternative is to check the fuel level by looking at a fuel gauge. You take a glance at the gauge, and it tells you a rough idea of how much fuel you have in your tank. The combination of checking your tanks with a dipstick before setting off and then monitoring with gauge readings is the best compromise for evaluating fuel levels.
Dipsticks are valuable instruments to verify the amount of fuel stored within a tank and should not be completely replaced by an electronic gauge. Gauges are more convenient, but the accuracy of a dipstick is impossible to beat!
This type of fuel oil gauge gives only an approximate oil level in the tank.
What is the Best Oil Tank Monitor?
A float gauge like this is very common in heating oil tanks. It gives an approximate level of the oil in the tank, but is not very accurate. This type of oil tank gauge uses an ultrasonic sensor to precisely measure the oil level.
When the oil is that high in the oil tank, it is too close to the ultrasonic sensor to get a precise reading. The Smart Oil Gauge is the most versatile heating oil gauge available. It allows for remote access via its app, and even sends low-level text and email alerts.
Fuel tank dipstick IMT 577
Which Oil Tank Monitor is the Best? The dip stick is the most cumbersome to use, so it has the lowest value for money. The Smart Oil Gauge provides the best combination of remote access, ease-of-use, accuracy, and value for money. The float gauge is second, and the dipstick is third. In sum, the Smart Oil Gauge is by far the best overall heating oil tank monitor available.
How often should you dip your fuel tank?
A leaking fuel tank not only hits your business where it hurts by reducing your saleable supply — if left undetected it can mean serious safety issues and six-figure fines from the EPA, not to mention a hefty clean-up bill. Keeping a close watch on the levels in your fuel storage tanks will also keep your fuel in good condition and protect your customers.
Over time, silt builds up in the bottom of all underground storage tanks. Many older underground tanks also have suction lines that run close to the bottom of the tank, increasing the chance of sucking water or silt into vehicles and causing damage. Maintaining proper fuel levels can minimise the risk and keep your fuel in top condition.
Fuel dipping can detect water and pollutants in your fuel storage tanks. Water contamination in fuel tanks can cause anything from intermittent power loss to engine failure, and the damage done can range from blown injectors to cracked components and cost thousands of dollars to fix.
Water in fuel also creates an ideal breeding environment for microbes which can degrade your fuel and cause phase separation, particulate contamination and tank damage due to acids produced by the microbes.
So what will I check for when I dip my fuel tank? You should also test for water by using a water finding paste on your dip stick. Drain any excess water immediately to keep your fuel fresh and reduce the potential for microbial contamination.
Finally, using a fuel sample test kit is good practice to ensure your fuel is free from microbes and particulates. How often should I dip? Ideally you would also use a fuel sample test kit regularly and keep up regular inspections of and maintenance on your tanks and fittings.