Buying Diesel in 'bulk'

I remember, years ago, when I visited a friend of mine who lived in a remote area (rural Ireland), he used to buy his diesel ‘in bulk’ maybe 500 - 1000 litres at a time to fuel his diesel car. He had a large tank specifically for this purpose in his garage so he could fill up his car at home. It saved him having to drive a round trip of maybe 20 miles to the nearest service station. And it saved him some money as it was cheaper in bulk. Is this an option nowadays in France? Does anyone on here do this?

Having taken a quick look online… it seems that France does not allow the individual/family to stock more than 120litres of carburant per household and, even then, it must be stored in the appropriate jerrycans of less than 50 litres…

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Rural Ireland was a place apart! No doubt this doesn’t apply to your friend, but many farmers were generous with their stocks of red diesel.

I have heard of businesses buying advance quantities from a garage. That could be worth exploring.

But even if one was allowed to have more than 120l, apart from the cost of buying a safe cuve to put it in how would one then get it into a car? Unless one has a special (even more expensive) cuve fitted with a nozzle that could reach a car you would have to fill up petrol cans and move it 10l at a time.

And it does degrade, so you would have to drive very big distances to make this worthwhile.

Don’t know about France, or even UK nowadays, but back in the '70s when my late brother and I started our small haulage business with 3 wagons, there were no hoops to jump through.

We bought second hand a large tank along with a load of old railway sleepers. Stacked them up safely and had it dropped on top, Then a long hose with lockable nozzle and a counter and we saved a load of money. It also had the added benefit of being issued with a Shell bunkering card, very useful in the days before plastic cards were commonplace.


Not a huge difference from storing heating oil to diesel. Not the same as storing essence petrol a whole different ball game but maybe not in France?

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I’m merely giving one link (of many) which answers the OP’s question.
I presume that “those in charge of making French Laws” have their reasons for imposing such restrictions.

When we had a diesel car, if I recall correctly, the distance per litre was so good that we didn’t run out…
However, for long/unknown trips… OH did like to have a full jerrycan in the boot… just in case.

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No problem Stella, just adding a comment that rules are made that defy logic in many cases. You can have 3000 litres of heating oil, maybe more.


[quote=“Corona, post:7, topic:44753, full:true”]
No problem Stella, just adding a comment that rules are made that defy logic in many cases.[/quote]

must confess, it would be useful to know “why” in so many, many cases… :+1: :roll_eyes: :wink:


It is too the taxman. Although many in Ireland still fillup from the farmers big tank and some get caught. Some years ago there was unit that would process cooking oil into Bio diesel which was good. Until the IRS caught on and reduced the monthly limit

I used to do that as well as I could get paid for collecting used cooking oil until local muscle started collecting it. It was fun but messy and smelly. Ran my vans and car on it with a faint smell of chips frying :joy:


Thanks for the comments everyone. I guess the laws on this have been tightened up . since the 1970’s :slight_smile:

And, yet, I bet no-one baulks at the thought of a 500l tank for fioul if they have oil fired CH, despite the fact that it’s the same stuff**. Well, other than red dye and the little issue of the amounts of tax and duty…

** gazole, obviously, not essence.


I wonder if it is a problem if it’s in eg a proper bunded double walled cuve? Because my fioul tank is 3000 litres, buried but considered ok.

It might partly be a desire to have the same rules for all carburants - gazole, lets face it, is about as dangerous as cooking oil (with which it shares many characteristics) but essence is a different kettle of fish altogether and can quite easily explode if a leaky container is coupled with an enclosed space and a source of ignition such as a spark.

It makes much more sense to have a modest limit for that - actually I thoutght it was 20l, 120 seems quite sporting all things considered.

As I said earlier in the thread, where’s the logic? These days a lot of people setting the rules seem to be a dumb as @&%*

A few clarifications :slightly_smiling_face: Did he live near the border and/or did he live on a farm?

He lived in County Clare in what used to be a farmhouse but was sold with just a plot of land. He bought ‘white diesel’ in bulk and had a tank that I guess was about 1000 litres. He steered (pun intended) well clear of the agricultural or ‘red diesel’ as the customs and excise people regularly dipped tanks to catch offenders who used the cheaper agricultural diesel in their cars/trucks . . . . .

Yes, laundering red diesel was a big industry on the border and Customs checkpoints to dip car tanks for red diesel used to pop up all over the Country. I guess since storing a thousand litres of heating oil would be OK so would a thousand litres of diesel, it’s much the same thing. The issue might be getting delivery because heating oil suppliers are geared for small quantities but diesel suppliers are geared to forecourt size tanks.

One of the numerous pies in which Slab Murphy had a finger.

It was rumoured that it was filtered through bread to get the dye out?