Oil Tank Capacity Calculations

Written by terri lynn coop
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Oil Tank Capacity Calculations
Oil tanks capacity is calculated based on the shape of the tank. (diesel storage tank image by Jim Parkin from Fotolia.com)

Oil tanks are geometric shapes or combinations of geometric shapes. The calculations to determine the capacity come from basic geometric formulas.

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Cylindrical Tank With Flat Ends

Whether the cylinder is vertical or horizontal, the formula is the same. To calculate the volume (V), measure the diameter (D) and length (L) of the cylinder. The formula is (3.14) X (D/2)^2 X (L) = (V) cubic feet. Convert cubic feet to gallons by multiplying by the factor 7.48 gallons per cubic foot.

Cylindrical Tank With Round Ends

If the tank is cylindrical in the middle with rounded ends, there is one additional step in the calculations. To calculate the volume (V), measure the length (L) and the diameter (D) of the cylinder and the radius of the half-sphere on one end (R). The formula is [(3.14) X (D/2)^2 X (L)] + [(4/3) X (3.14) X (R)^3] = (V) cubic feet. To convert cubic feet to gallons, multiply by 7.48 gallons per cubic foot.

Square Tanks

To calculate the volume (V) of a square or rectangular tank, measure the height (H), length (L) and width (W) of the tank. The formula is (H) X (L) X (W) = (V) cubic feet. To convert cubic feet to gallons, multiply by 7.48 gallons per cubic foot.

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