Personal Small Business Enterprise

Efficient Tank Monitoring in the Age of IoT

Posted August 29, 2018 in Business, English by 0

Companies that lack a precise remote view of their customers’ tank levels are hard pressed to know, who on any given day, needs a refill. These companies must instead rely on historical customer consumption data to predict and schedule refills. This can result in inefficiencies and profit loss as high as 45 per cent1.

Until recently, companies who distribute bulk fluids would monitor tanks manually, checking them one by one to make sure they were not empty. Over time, companies determined that this method of “topping up” tanks and making emergency callouts at a moment’s notice was costing them a great deal of money; turns out it was money they did not need to spend.

Solutions for remote tank monitoring allow companies to get accurate, real-time information on tank levels to avoid runouts or unnecessary service calls. Data from tank sensors across the network gives these distributors the ability to determine at-a-glance which customers’ tanks need to be refilled and which do not. This “new method” of remote tank monitoring enables distributors to improve responsiveness to reduce downtime, enhance customer service, and reduce stop costs.

How tank monitoring works

Tank monitoring solutions allow distributors of bulk fluids, propane gas and other liquids to remotely monitor tank fill levels, usage and temperature in real time.

With access to real-time data, distributors can:

  • Gain better insights and make more informed business decisions
  • Optimize routes and scheduling
  • Respond quickly to customer needs and improve customer satisfaction
  • Minimize time spent managing inventory and resources

As the network of connected devices now includes billions of units worldwide, tank monitoring solutions allow companies to monitor fluids in their customers’ tanks remotely. Here’s how it works:

  1. Each tank is installed with sensors for monitoring.
  2. Tank-level measurements and other diagnostics data are sent wirelessly to the cloud and processed.
  3. Fill levels, usage, and other tank-level data are displayed on the management portal, which can be integrated with existing data sources or applications.

Having access to rich data sets makes it easier for companies to detect anomalies and proactively maintain proper fill inventory levels. Companies with the ability to monitor tanks and assets remotely, stay on top of inventory and can cut down considerably on the number of service calls they have to make resulting in an enormous cost savings. Altogether, tank monitoring solutions give distributors the ability to make more informed business decisions.

Investing in knowledge

The American statesman Benjamin Franklin once said that “an investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” While it is a safe bet that Franklin didn’t have tank monitoring in mind when he came up with this adage, there is a lot to the idea of a direct link between knowledge and success in the fuel delivery market. Companies that monitor, manage and/or distribute fuel, water or other bulk lubes and fluids using an end-to-end, cloud-based “knowledge solution” are enjoying impressive cost savings.

With billions of connected devices, it is important to be supported by the right network, one that delivers speed, coverage, and reliability. Bell is a world-class IoT provider and provides customers with access to Canada’s best national network for IoT. Recently, Bell has also signed a multi-year agreement with Superior Propane, Canada’s largest national provider of propane and related equipment and services, to deliver comprehensive fuel tank monitoring services. With IoT sensors installed on propane tanks nationwide, Bell’s tank monitoring solution will help Superior Propane improve customer satisfaction and reduce operational costs.

Click here to learn more about tank monitoring solutions from Bell.


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