Cleaning of Tanks

At Rafibra, we are experts in cleaning diesel, petrol, Jet A1 and chemical products such as acetone, alcohol or paints

We carry out the most effective form of petrol tank cleaning once the tank has been degassed and the atmospheric gasses inside it have been controlled and are below 1% of the LFL (lower flammable limit) at all times.

Over time, water and sludge gets deposited in the base of the tanks. These impurities may come from the actual fuel or may be caused by the entry of water or impurities due to a leaky tank or pipework.  

Our waste tank cleaning services begin by removing the sludge from the whole base of the tank, clean the walls with water at high pressure and with disinfectants designed and created by our chemists, and thoroughly brush and dry the tank.

If the tank contains fuel that is in good condition, during the cleaning process, the existing fuel can be separated from the impurities. This fuel will be returned to the tank once the clean has been completed.

The liquids resulting from the tank cleaning will be packed in appropriate containers for their subsequent transfer to the plant for managing toxic and hazardous wastes.

In this aspect, Rafibra acts as manager-transporter of the sludge sediments and hydrocarbons and other hydrocarbon waste. 

The reduction in the explosive index will be verified during this operation and after vacuuming the combustible waste remaining inside the tank.

All ventilation equipment and the tank structure will be connected to an earth.

Oxygen will not be used for ventilation under any circumstances.

Why is it so important to clean diesel oil tanks?

The organic origin of hydrocarbons makes it possible for all its derivatives to undergo a deterioration process. In the case of stored diesel oil, the natural impurities in the product and the condensed water produce a heavy sludge. For this reason, it is essential to clean out tanks regularly.

The cleaning and repair of fuel tanks is an essential process for lengthening the useful life of their contents and as a preventive measure for avoiding accidents in oil installations.

Fuel tank cleaning as a preventive measure

The fatal enemy of the diesel or petrol tank is rust. This can occur for different reasons; externally, due to sudden changes in temperature or exposure to extreme environments. In these situations, the water tightness of the tank may be reduced.

Internally, inside the tank there is an accumulation of water particulates and residues from the hydrocarbon due to settling. This is normal for all tanks. As a consequence, micro-organisms form in the bottom of the tank which can compromise the quality of the product and the proper functioning of the Installed ducts and machinery.

Regular cleaning of fuel tanks helps to eliminate these threats and lengthen their useful life, and will also reduce future costs for corrective maintenance.


Tank cleaning service: before and after example

Access and stay inside the tank will not be allowed until the tank will have less of 1% of the I.E.L

The workers that access to the interior of the tank will be provide with the following equipment:

sludge tank cleaning
tank degassing procedure

The entry and stay of persons inside the tank, under the above conditions, will be always subject to external security, ready for evacuation.

Access to the interior will be with non-sparking equipment (aluminium ladder, with rubber stoppers, etc.) and in such a way that rapid evacuation is always possible.

Lights equipment will be explosion-proof and with a power supply no more of 24V.

Will take special care when removing muds, as this will again produce an explosive atmosphere. Will be maintain the precautions described above and, if necessary, will repeat the degass procedure.



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Characteristics of the service

FAQ on cleaning tanks

Once the tank has been de-gassed, begin by extracting the sludge from the whole base of the tank. Clean the walls with water at high pressure and with disinfectants designed and created by our chemists, brushing where this is required and dry the tank.

The liquids resulting from cleaning the tank should be packaged in the appropriate containers for their subsequent transfer to a plant that handles toxic and hazardous residues.

If the tank contains some product that is in good condition, the existing clean fuel can be separated from the impurities during the cleaning process. This fuel can then be returned to the tank once the cleaning process has been completed.