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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Canada, Québec, Brossard
    Posts
    30

    Default Pipe going to the ground

    Hello everyone,

    I have done an inspection yesterday and I've seen a pipe going in the ground.
    The house was built in 1946 and is located in Montreal.

    In Montreal, during those years, they used to store the oil tank underground. The only hesitation I am having is that the pipe going underground seems like an entry for the gas. Also there is a valve next to it.

    I am not insured for underground tanks, so this situation worries me. I don't want to make a bad call for the client, but I am worried that it can, maybe, be an underground oil tank.

    Can I have your opinions on the type of piping on the picture please?

    Thank you

    Eli

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    BC Canada
    Posts
    368

    Default Re: Pipe going to the ground

    could be underground oil tank. Let the survey scan guy come in.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Southern Vancouver Island
    Posts
    4,549

    Default Re: Pipe going to the ground

    No need to worry. You saw a pipe and a valve, and it looks like an old oil furnace supply line. Report the possibility of a buried fuel oil tank, (not gas in English, although gasoline is sometimes stored in a tank below ground).

    Nobody expects you to find the tank, but you must make the client aware of the possibility of a tank if you see clues like that.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  4. #4

    Default Re: Pipe going to the ground

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kogel View Post
    (not gas in English, although gasoline is sometimes stored in a tank below ground).
    I would have thought that the black piping was for "natural gas"?

    The valve is atypical for a gas line and its location at or below grade is problematic.

    Sometimes a home inspection discovers additional questions unanswerable in the time alloted for the fee paid.

    Last edited by Egbert Jager; 03-22-2012 at 09:31 AM. Reason: <typos>
    Egbert Jager
    Diamond Home Inspection
    http://www.diamondhomeinspection.ca

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    2,797

    Default Re: Pipe going to the ground

    Most likely a natural gas line to something like a BBQ, but if there is *any* doubt, report the possibility of an abandoned fuel oil system.

    Here's one from last week for a (removed) oil fired boiler, the other end was still present in the basement, adjacent to the location of the interior oil tank shown on the original plans - note that it is pretty similar to what you found.

    One other thing: if you cannot observe 100% of the basement or crawl space areas where an interior tank may have been located, report the fact, and recommend that whatever is obstructing inspection be removed, and the area be inspected for evidence of spilled oil. And if you can smell *any* fuel oil odor report the fact, and recommend that the source of the odor be established and remediated - fuel oil contamination is potentially a huge liability.

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    Michael Thomas
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Southern Vancouver Island
    Posts
    4,549

    Default Re: Pipe going to the ground

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kogel View Post
    No need to worry. You saw a pipe and a valve, and it looks like an old oil furnace supply line. Report the possibility of a buried fuel oil tank.
    Nobody expects you to find the tank, but you must make the client aware of the possibility of a tank if you see clues like that.
    Let me rephrase that. A pipe and a valve, and right center of Pic 1, what looks like an oil line, behind that particle board.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    2,797

    Default Re: Pipe going to the ground

    John is correct: I flipped through the pictures too quickly, and not take a look at the valve.

    Given the valve type, could be either for fuel-oil or a water line to the exterior, but not for natural gas (unless whoever installed it *really* screwed up).

    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Canada, Québec, Brossard
    Posts
    30

    Default Re: Pipe going to the ground

    Thanks to everyone one.


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