Fuel Oil

Also known as: Kerosene, Diesel Fuel, Home Heating Oil, Coal Oil, JP5
Chemical reference numbers (CAS): 8008-20-6 and 70892-10-3

Fuel oil is a general term for a number of burnable liquids made from crude oil. Most common is fuel oil No.1 (also called kerosene), range oil, and jet fuel (JP5). Fuel oils 1-D and 2-D are diesel fuels. Fuel oil No. 2 is home heating oil, and fuel oil No. 4 is a diesel fuel for boats. All fuel oil mixtures have similar chemical and physical properties.

Fuel oils are used to run many types of engines, lamps and heaters. Sometimes small amounts of fuel oil are stored in portable containers for use in space heaters, to clean metal parts, or used in camp stoves or lanterns.

Most fuel oil entering the environment comes from spills or leaking storage tanks. When spilled on soil, some components of fuel oil attach to soil. Furthermore, fuel spilled on water or soil evaporates into the air. Fuel oil can also contaminate soil sediments and private drinking water supplies.

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Last Revised: March 13, 2017