Fuel Testing & Analysis

CommTank provides fuel testing and analysis to ASTM standards. We provide timely analysis, accurate results, and onsite sampling to clients in our service area. Clients with mission critical systems rely on us to sample and test their fuel and keep their operations running smoothly.

Facilities that require fuel quality testing:

  • Medical
  • Emergency / First Response
  • Senior Care / Assisted Living
  • Data Centers
  • Airports
  • Communication
  • Transportation
  • Energy

We recommend our clients set up an annual testing program, especially if their facility is legally required to meet Massachusetts Fire Code requirements or NFPA 110 standards or if they require compliance to meet the Joint Commissions accreditation standards. At CommTank, we don’t confuse the fuel testing process by providing multiple packages. We provide only the tests needed to ensure good fuel quality and to keep you compliant.

Types of fuel we test:

  • Diesel Fuel
  • Fuel Oil
  • Biodiesel

Fuel Test Methods

ASTM Standard

 Test Description

Water/Sediment

D1796

Shows concentrated levels of water and sediment to determine fuel quality.

Flash Point

D93

Determines the temperature at which fuel reacts to a flame under laboratory conditions. 

Particulate

D6217

Tests the levels of particulate in a sample.

Microbial

D7978

Determines how much microbial contamination is in the fuel. 

Cloud Point

D2500

Determines the temperature at which fuel begins to form a wax and create a cloud.

Pour Point

D97

Determines the temperature that fuel becomes crystallized and resistant to flow.

  • Minimal Sample Sizes for fuel:  2 Liter
  • Sample Container:  Glass or Metal (provided by CommTank)

Fuel Sampling

CommTank provides onsite fuel sampling services. A technician will collect a representative composite sample using ASTM D4047, take notes, photographs, and label each sample.  We then transport the sample back to our laboratory in a timely manner and ensure it is kept cool so that it is representative of the fuel in your storage tank.

Samples can be taken from aboveground or underground fuel storage tanks, tanker trucks or boat fuel tanks. A custom made sampler may be used depending upon the specific application.

Field technician is taking a sample from a UST that supplies fuel to a genset

Frequently Asked Questions:

Why is testing my fuel important?
There are many factors that lead to the degradation of diesel fuel. Periodic testing of your fuel will assure its quality to the industry ASTM standard. Should a facility ignore the laws or recommendations to test its fuel, there could be significant consequences. In the event of an emergency, contaminated fuel could cause a backup generator failure. Situations like these could be life threatening so taking care in their prevention is very important.

When am I required to test my fuel?
According to Massachusetts Comprehensive Fire Safety Code (527 CMR 1.00), any facility operating an emergency standby power generator is required to conduct an annual fuel quality test to ASTM standards. Additionally, any facility with accreditation by the Joint Commission or seeking accreditation must comply with their standards. The Joint Commission follows National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 99 guidelines forregulation of medical facilities and NFPA 110, which specifies regulations and testing requirements for emergency generators. Even if your facility does not fall under these categories, we recommend an annual fuel quality test to assure all of your diesel powered equipment will function properly.

What tests do you provide?
We test diesel fuel to ASTM standards. The ASTM provides the industry standard test methods for diesel fuel and is often cited in regulations such as the NFPA 110. Our test package which includes ASTM D1796, D93, D6217, D7978, D2500, and D97 provides a comprehensive and accurate look into the quality of your fuel.

How are samples transported to your lab?
For fuel testing services, most labs will send a sample retrieval kit for you to figure out on your own. At CommTank, we will send a technician to your facility to take samples from various points in your tank. This will ensure samples are taken correctly and will provide results that reflect the health of all fuel in your tank.  Additionally, we transport and test your fuel at our facility, so no untrained personnel will be handling test samples.

What should I do if my fuel is found to be below standard quality?
If your fuel fails a test, there are a few options for your next step to bringing it up to quality. We provide fuel filtering and polishing services that can extend the lifespan of your fuel and bring it back up to an acceptable level. Alternatively, if your fuel is found to be contaminated beyond recovery, it should be pumped out, properly disposed of, and replaced for the safe use of the machinery it is powering.