Raven Tanks Guide to Thorough Tank Inspections

Proper tank inspections are paramount for sustaining the integrity and functionality of storage tanks while ensuring compliance with pertinent regulations. This comprehensive guide, crafted by Raven Tanks, delves into key aspects of tank inspections, offering valuable insights and recommendations applicable to various storage tank types—be they above ground, underground, or potable water storage systems. Armed with this knowledge, tank owners and operators can confidently conduct effective inspections, ensuring their storage tanks remain well-maintained, regulatory-compliant, and reliable assets for their businesses. 


Establishing the Purpose and Frequency of Tank Inspections 

The primary objective of rigorous tank inspections is to evaluate the overall condition of storage tanks, pinpoint potential issues, and guarantee compliance with safety and environmental regulations. These inspections encompass assessing structural integrity, detecting leaks or corrosion, evaluating tank components, and reviewing maintenance records. The frequency of inspections varies based on factors like tank material, age, usage, and regulatory requirements. Generally, routine visual inspections should occur monthly or quarterly, external inspections every 2-3 years, and comprehensive internal inspections every 5-10 years, tailored to the tank specifications and usage. 


Visual Inspections and Leak Detection 

Visual inspections form the foundational step in proper tank inspection procedures. These inspections focus on the overall condition of the storage tank, involving: 


  • Examining the tank’s exterior for signs of corrosion, cracks, or coating, vent, or piping system damage. 
  • Checking for leaks, indicated by discolouration, staining, or wet spots around the tank area. 
  • Inspecting ancillary components like valves, gauges, and bunding for signs of wear or damage. 


When conducting visual inspections, it’s crucial to note that unexplained changes in tank levels, persistent odours, or contaminants in nearby soil or water sources may signify undetected leaks. Utilizing leak detection technology, such as automatic tank gauging systems, ground-penetrating radar, or acoustic sensors, aids in early leak identification, preventing costly clean-up and repairs. 


Structural Integrity Assessments 

Preserving the structural integrity of a storage tank is fundamental in averting leaks, mechanical failures, and environmental damage. Structural integrity assessments include: 


  • Inspecting tank walls, floors, and roofs for signs of corrosion or weakening. 
  • Conducting thickness testing using ultrasonic testing (UT) or non-destructive testing (NDT) techniques to identify areas of reduced structural integrity. 
  • Performing stress analyses to pinpoint potential weak points or overloaded areas within the tank’s structure. 


Regular assessments of structural integrity empower proactive issue resolution, ensuring the tank operates safely and optimally. 


Evaluating Tank Components and Accessories 

A holistic tank inspection encompasses reviewing key components and accessories linked to the storage tank, such as: 


  • Checking valves, fittings, and connections for wear, tears, or corrosion. 
  • Inspecting piping systems for signs of corrosion, leaks, or damage. 
  • Examining venting systems for blockages, wear, or corrosion to prevent over- or under-pressurisation. 
  • Ensuring the accurate operation of level gauges, pressure gauges, and temperature sensors. 
  • Inspecting secondary containment and bunding systems for cracks, wear, or signs of contamination. 


Regular evaluations and maintenance of these components prevent potential issues, maintain regulatory compliance, and ensure the tank system operates safely and effectively. 


Inspection Documentation and Record Keeping 

Proper documentation and record keeping are indispensable for regulatory compliance and showcasing a commitment to safe, responsible storage tank management. Tank inspection records should capture inspection dates, findings, conducted maintenance or repair work, and identified issues or recommendations for additional actions. Documentation of regulatory compliance inspections, internal assessments, and third-party inspections facilitates future audits, site investigations, or compliance checks. 

Ensuring that inspection records are complete, accurate, and readily accessible is crucial. Implementing a digital record-keeping system enhances efficiency and provides easy access to essential documentation when needed. 

By adhering to these comprehensive guidelines for proper tank inspections, tank owners and operators can confidently evaluate their storage tanks’ condition, promptly address potential issues, and maintain compliance with pertinent regulations. Regular inspections and proactive maintenance contribute to the overall safety and efficiency of storage tank systems, safeguarding valuable resources and investments in the long term. 


Ensuring Reliable Storage Tank Operations with Raven Tanks 

Thorough tank inspections are instrumental in guaranteeing the safety, efficiency, and compliance of storage assets. By rigorously assessing structural integrity, detecting leaks, evaluating components and accessories, and maintaining comprehensive documentation, tank owners and operators can proactively address potential issues and ensure optimal storage system performance. 

Raven Tanks stands as your trusted partner for top-tier tank inspections and maintenance services. Our skilled team possesses the expertise and experience needed to navigate regulatory complexities, conduct detailed inspections, and offer customized solutions tailored to your unique storage tank needs. Contact us today to explore how we can enhance the safety and performance of your storage tanks. Visit our website to discover our array of high-quality services designed to protect your investments and the environment. 

Raven Engineering Group  

1800 770 899  


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