How to clean up a heating oil spill

Updated February 21, 2017

Heating oil spills can be easily managed if they are dealt with immediately. This article explains the correct method to use when heating oil is spilt inside a home on hard, flat flooring. If heating oil is spilt in carpet, the carpet must be removed and replaced. If heating oil is spilt outside, in soil, or near water, these are more serious spills that may require the help of professionals to clean up safely and effectively. By following these procedures as outlined, a heating oil spill can be cleaned up and removed quickly.

Keep flames and heat sources away from the spilt heating oil. Open the nearest windows and doors to allow for adequate ventilation in the spill area. Do not allow pets or people to walk through the spill site and track the oil throughout the house.

Pour an oil absorbing product over the spilt oil. Possible products include Absorb-It and some powdered laundry detergents. Allow the oil absorbing product to sit on the oil spill for fifteen to twenty minutes to maximise absorption.

Sweep the contaminated absorbent material with a broom and a dust pan and place the contaminated material in a metal garbage can lined with a plastic garbage can liner to hold in the oil fumes. After all of the absorbing material is swept up, pack the plastic liner into the metal garbage can liner and cover the can with a metal lid.

Take the contaminated absorbing material to a local hazardous waste disposal unit.

Remove heating fuel oil residue from the floor with water and a degreaser cleaning solvent.

Things You'll Need

  • Absorbing material
  • Broom
  • Dust pan
  • Metal garbage can
  • Garbage can liner
  • Water
  • Degreasing cleaner
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About the Author

Kelly Nuttall is a student at Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah. She is set to graduate in the spring of 2011 with her bachelor's degree in technical communications. She has been writing for various websites since March of 2009.