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Diesel fuel storage - A PPSPower beginner’s guide

Updated: Nov 9, 2020

If your genset runs on diesel, there are a few extra considerations you will need to make when storing your fuel for future use. A good fuel supply is essential for any generator, but proper storage needs to be thought through, as the dangers of unsafe diesel storage could cause harm to your business.

At PPSPower, we have put together a quick guide to diesel storage for generator users:

Storing your diesel onsite - 6 to 12 months

Once diesel leaves a refiner, it begins to oxidize. During this process, sediments form in the diesel which can cause serious damage to a generator set. Storing diesel fuel at lower temperatures (typically below 21°c) can delay the oxidation process, but generally diesel fuel will last between 6 to 12 months.

Fuel treatment and protecting fuel health

To prolong the shelf life of stored diesel, the use of biocides and stability treatments can extend the fuel’s lifespan. Biocides actively attack diesel fuel bacteria growth, blocking harmful sediments from forming.

Fuel stability treatments can be used to prevent the diesel from breaking down on a chemical level.

If you use storage tanks it is also important that these are properly maintained. Over time, water contamination can damage diesel storage units, so it is recommended that you minimise the amount of empty space inside your storage tank, to avoid moisture accumulating. Unwanted water within the tank can create a whole host of problems, including degradation of fuel quality.

Storage and tank regulations

Diesel storage and tank regulations can change quickly, so it’s very important to understand the most recent legislation prior to installing or placing your storage tank on your property.

Before purchasing and storing any diesel fuel, you’ll need to know whether your tank is underground, bunkered or above ground, whether it meets the current structural and leak prevention measures, as well as any appropriate actions for repair, alteration or reconstruction.

Choosing the best conditions for storage

Firstly, storing your diesel at a cooler temperature should be a priority.

If you’re using an above ground tank, choose an isolated location- building some kind of canopy or enclosure around the tank to keep water out and reduce the amount of sun directly striking your tank would be particularly useful. If the tank is situated below your generator, make sure it’s situated on a raised surface to help with accessibility.

Keep an eye on the tank to avoid any water build up and never let water pool at the top or on the sides of the tan. Check inside the tank regularly to make sure moisture hasn’t built up inside.

Finally, always keep your storage tanks away from any points of ignition or electrical points. If there are any electrical outlets near your

Contact PPSPower to discuss your maintenance needs

PPSPower offers first-class professional generator servicing and UPS services, with over 60 years’ combined experience and a 24/7 call out facility from engineers based throughout the UK. All service packages come with a dedicated account manager to ensure requirements are understood and dealt with effectively, and a bi-annual generator service visit with relevant system checks.

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