DON'T MAKE A $10,000.00 MISTAKE
THE 5 BIGGEST MISTAKES HOMEOWNERS MAKE WHEN HIRING A TANK REMOVAL CONTRACTOR
1. Ask for a copy of the companies removal license and make sure it matches the contract you are signing. (Some companies have one company with a license and then do work with a non licensed company. In this way they avoid strict regulation and can dump illegally, avoiding costly insurance, etc. The only valid license issued in the State of Illinois for tank removal is a de-commissioning license issued by the Office of the State Fire Marshal)
2. Make sure the liquid being removed from your tank is properly manifested with the EPA (You as the homeowner are the responsible party for the oil removed from your tank. If a unscrupulous company dumps oil into a sewer or prairie to avoid disposal costs it is you the homeowner that will pay for the clean-up. All liquids should be pumped into a pumper truck that holds a special waste haulers license. If the company is using a portable pump and 55 gallon drums beware.
3. Don't hire a removal company that has an in house environmental consulting branch. (If you do, you are letting the fox into the henhouse. If you need an environmental consultant (not normally necessary) hire one independent of the removal company, otherwise they then have total control of the amount of contaminated soil they say needs to be removed. This is where the $10,000 mistake can most easily occur. The laws governing residential contamination is sometimes subject to interpretation. Without hiring an environmental lawyer you as a layman have no idea whether these companies are acting in your best interest or following the law)
4. Do not provide a deposit. (All reputable companies will finish the work without a deposit. Pay when you are satisfied with the finished work. Fraudulent companies will make many promises that they have no intention of fulfilling. Once they have your money it is much harder to stop the work if you see things are going wrong.)
5. If it sounds too good to be true it probably is (There are dishonest companies out there that are quoting prices much below cost. If they were to actually finish the work properly for that price they would soon be bankrupt. What happens is they add on to the original contract saying that the job was not what it seemed to be or will say the site is heavily
contaminated. You may end up paying far more than if you hired a reputable company to begin with.)