Smart Touch Energy Blog

How to Protect Yourself From Heating Oil Theft

Posted by Smart Touch Energy on Feb 29, 2016 1:00:00 PM

Home heating oil is a precious asset during the coldest months of the year. Without a full tank, you could find you and your family in an uncomfortable or even dangerous situation. Unfortunately, heating oil theft is something that happens — and something that you should plan for as a homeowner.

Tips for Heating Oil Tank Security

If you want to prevent heating oil theft from your home this winter, start with some of these tips:

  • Visibility — Try to make your tank as invisible from the street as possible. Consider installing a fence or growing a strategically placed bush to shroud your tank from anyone who may be cruising around and looking for targets. If it’s impossible to hide your tank from the street, make sure the tank area is well-lit. Significant lighting may be just enough for a prospective thief to pass your tank by.
  • Protection — Alarms and tank locks can also help secure your heating oil. Heating oil theft most often targets tanks that are easy to get into and oil that is easy to access. By installing alarms and locks, you’re less likely to be a target for theft.
  • Neighborhood — Keep up with what’s going on in your neighborhood. If others have experienced heating oil theft, you may want to take added precautions. Keep in touch with neighborhood watch organizations, or share information through a web-based community forum.
  • Insurance — Some victims of heating oil theft find that it’s insured through a homeowner’s policy. Contact your insurance provider to see if you have heating oil coverage and, if not, what you would need to do to add it to your policy.
  • Monitoring — Do you know how much heating oil is in your tank at any given time? If you don’t, you might become a victim of theft without even knowing it. Monitor your tank closely for large drops that would indicate foul play. If you don’t want to trudge through the cold to check your levels, get a monitoring system that displays your levels from inside the comfort of your home. Some advanced monitoring systems even warn individuals who get too close to your tank, automatically turning on lights or reporting the breach to local police.
  • Enclosures — If possible, enclose your tank inside a shed or other structure. Placing your tank inside a locked enclosure is one of the best ways to prevent theft. If you pursue this option, make sure your enclosure features plenty of ventilation.

When winter comes, you should be able to sit back and enjoy the warm confines of your home — without worrying about heating oil theft and other issues. If we can help heat your home or secure your home heating tank, contact our team today.


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