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#1475106 - 05/24/09 05:14 AM Storing gasoline indoors?
SecondMonkey Offline


Registered: 10/09/07
Posts: 931
Loc: OR
I recently rented out a large industrial shop space. I would like to have my own supply of gas there on hand. Is it safe to store gasoline indoors (big shop) in a 55 gallon drum? I was reading the zoning details and it specifically says storing fuel indoors is legal.

If I can, should I use a steel drum or HDPE? And, is there some way I can ground them to prevent static shock?
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#1475110 - 05/24/09 05:23 AM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: SecondMonkey]
eljefino Online   content


Registered: 06/15/03
Posts: 30002
Loc: ME
I don't have all the answers but if you do nothing else vent near the thing!

Around here you see paints and other VOCs stored in a separate outside shed rather consistently... IDK if it's OSHA or EPA making it happen, or perhaps another entity.

Is this the warehouse with the bad electricals? I wouldn't be homebrew grounding anything to anything until that gets figured out!

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#1475123 - 05/24/09 07:02 AM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: eljefino]
simple_gifts Offline


Registered: 07/26/04
Posts: 11104
Loc: Middlesex County CT
I'd be more concerned about safe transfer. In the Air Force refueling a plane required a minimum of 3 grounds, plane to ground, truck to ground, truck to plane, and this was for fuel that is less volatile than gasoline. A static discharge between the pump you may be inserting and the drum is all you need ....

So, grounding the drum is ONE of the things you need to do.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1tYO4jvnJHw&feature=related
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#1475204 - 05/24/09 09:38 AM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: simple_gifts]
StevieC Offline


Registered: 08/21/08
Posts: 14339
Loc: Niagara Falls, ON, CA (near)
We regularly fill up a huge drum at a station and bring it home for all the outdoor yard equipment. Grounding is must and we have a pair of old jumper cables we use for this. One end is clamped on the rim of the Drum and the other is clipped to a thick ground wire connected to the fuse panels neutral line.
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#1475208 - 05/24/09 09:41 AM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: StevieC]
FiremarshalRob Offline


Registered: 03/25/08
Posts: 553
Loc: Baton Rouge, LA
That would make me rather nervous.
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#1475209 - 05/24/09 09:42 AM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: FiremarshalRob]
StevieC Offline


Registered: 08/21/08
Posts: 14339
Loc: Niagara Falls, ON, CA (near)
We have done it for over 20 years and never a problem... What makes you nervous?
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#1475253 - 05/24/09 10:34 AM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: StevieC]
simple_gifts Offline


Registered: 07/26/04
Posts: 11104
Loc: Middlesex County CT
When dealing with dispensing and storing large amounts of gasoline, I would avoid anecdotal evidence, you won't hear from people's whose techniques didn't work.

Having dealt will electrically fired munitions for 15 years, grounding of a person is equally important.
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#1475582 - 05/24/09 06:08 PM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: simple_gifts]
Drew2000 Offline


Registered: 11/16/06
Posts: 982
Loc: Long Island, NY
If you had a fire in the shop, you could probably kiss your fire insurance policy goodbye. Indoor drum storage of gasoline probably violates many state and local building codes

I would never store gasoline indoors. Either get a proper double-walled gas dispensing system, or at the very least, get a sturdy outbuilding shed and store your drums as far away as possible from other structures.

http://www.convault.com/index.html
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#1475607 - 05/24/09 07:03 PM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: Drew2000]
SecondMonkey Offline


Registered: 10/09/07
Posts: 931
Loc: OR
 Originally Posted By: simple_gifts
I'd be more concerned about safe transfer. In the Air Force refueling a plane required a minimum of 3 grounds, plane to ground, truck to ground, truck to plane, and this was for fuel that is less volatile than gasoline. A static discharge between the pump you may be inserting and the drum is all you need ....

Do you ever ground your rubber tired vehicle before filling it with gas? The air force stands to lose BILLIONS of dollars in a fire, I'd lose a couple cordless drills.

Really I see this as no different than driving a truck with two full 20 gallon tanks and parking it inside. In terms of fire, it's exactly the same. Nobody ever grounds their pickup truck before filling...or parking.

 Originally Posted By: Drew2000
If you had a fire in the shop, you could probably kiss your fire insurance policy goodbye. Indoor drum storage of gasoline probably violates many state and local building codes

Did you miss the part where I said I know with 100% certainty it is perfectly legal? That includes building code, zoning law, and even my landlord.

And, BTW - I already have SEVEN fire extinguishers mounted on the walls.

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#1475618 - 05/24/09 07:22 PM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: SecondMonkey]
Drew2000 Offline


Registered: 11/16/06
Posts: 982
Loc: Long Island, NY
Yes, I did miss the zoning part, but just because it's not expressly forbidden, doesn't mean it's a great idea either.

Difference with vehicles is they have a vapor recovery system to handle the fumes from evaporation. Do as you please, your mind already seems made up.
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#1475662 - 05/24/09 08:14 PM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: Drew2000]
SecondMonkey Offline


Registered: 10/09/07
Posts: 931
Loc: OR
 Originally Posted By: Drew2000
Yes, I did miss the zoning part, but just because it's not expressly forbidden, doesn't mean it's a great idea either.

It's not just "not forbidden", but the zoning specifically addresses storing fuel indoors. I'm in an industrial park.

 Originally Posted By: Drew2000
Difference with vehicles is they have a vapor recovery system to handle the fumes from evaporation. Do as you please, your mind already seems made up.

Well, that's why I asked "what's the safest way to do it" in my first post. I'm not asking for anyone's permission, but simply what the safest way to do it is.
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#1475733 - 05/24/09 09:11 PM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: SecondMonkey]
tom slick Offline


Registered: 05/26/03
Posts: 9057
Loc: Central Coast, Calif.
remember that you need to vent that amount of fuel, where are those vapors from your makeshift tank going to go?
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#1475972 - 05/25/09 07:20 AM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: tom slick]
Eddie Online   happy


Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 8410
Loc: Florida, Cape Coral
Why don't you ask the local fire department & the insurance company? All this guessing is not the way to go if you have problems.
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#1476294 - 05/25/09 02:28 PM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: Eddie]
SecondMonkey Offline


Registered: 10/09/07
Posts: 931
Loc: OR
 Originally Posted By: Eddie
Why don't you ask the local fire department & the insurance company? All this guessing is not the way to go if you have problems.


I HIGHLY doubt either of those places are going to explain how to store gas. It has nothing to do with them, and further more, is none of their business.

I thought I could get some helpful answers about this on a board dedicated to fuel and oil but obviously I was wrong.

 Originally Posted By: tom slick
where are those vapors from your makeshift tank going to go?

What is "makeshift" about it? Do you think I'm the only one storing fuel in drums? Why do you think they call them OIL drums? I also know for a fact that basically EVERY high octane race fuel seller sells it by the 55 gallon drum.

Furthermore, if there ever was a fire, it doesn't matter whether you have 5 gallons or 50 - they will both burn way out of your control.(how many of you have a gas can in the garage?)
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#1476341 - 05/25/09 03:21 PM Re: Storing gasoline indoors? [Re: SecondMonkey]
tom slick Offline


Registered: 05/26/03
Posts: 9057
Loc: Central Coast, Calif.
I'm just trying to help you out, Maybe your plan isn't as simple as filling any 'ol 55 gallon barrel and reaping the benefits of on-site fuel storage.

Is your OIL drum certified for use with fuel? Oil and fuel are not the same. Fuel must be stored in an approved container, even it is 1 gallon. Maybe DOT approval on any drum is all that is needed?

I know the EPA explicitly says not to store fuel indoors because it has to be vented. In fact it is supposed to be 50' away from your structure. When stored in barrels I've only seen it in a hazmat shelter. just because the local speed shop has a barrel of race gas sitting in the shop doesn't make it safe or legal.

some homework for you.
http://www.purdue.edu/dp/envirosoft/fuel/src/fireexp.htm
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