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Why Do Soil Testing?

Often, pinhole leaks in tanks are not visible when tanks are inspected in the ground. These pinholes are virtually invisible against the dark background of the soil during the town's or tank closure company's inspection prior to closing the tank. If you are having a tank closed in place and filled with sand/gravel or foam, you should always make sure soil testing is a part of that process.

Our soil testing service will provide you with a complete certified report. To order this service, or to find out more, give us a call at 732-681-TANK (8265), or you can order online now.


Is Soil Testing Recommended as part of a Real Estate Inspection?

Here is the most typical case…

Question: The property I am buying has a buried oil tank that was taken out of service. The tank contains sand, foam or gravel and no oil. The seller has provided permits and reports from the municipality and the town building inspector stating that the tank was properly abandoned and taken out of service. Is it still necessary to test the soil surrounding this buried oil tank?


Answer: If the seller can provide a report stating that the soil was tested at the time the tank was taken out of service, filled with sand/gravel or foam, additional soil testing would not be necessary. If the seller cannot provide any written reports about soil testing, we strongly advise that you should evaluate soil as part of your inspection.

In recent months, many homeowners have discovered soil contamination exists around their buried abandoned oil tanks, <em>even though their town or municipality considered these tanks properly decommissioned.</em> These homeowners originally purchased property based strictly on the municipality or town building inspector's approval that the buried tank was backfilled with sand, gravel or foam, and ignored the fact that soil testing had not been performed.

Now, these homeowners are selling their homes and they are providing the buyer with all the municipality's documents about the buried oil tank on the property. Since the homeowner provided no documents about the soil's condition, the buyer tests the soil and discovers high levels of contamination in the area around the buried tank. Even though the homeowner has all the supporting documentation from the municipality, the responsibility for cleaning up the contamination rests solely with the unsuspecting homeowner. Cleanup costs may range anywhere from $8,000.00 to $100,000.00+.

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