rfsod48

Diesel Fuel For COLD Conditions

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manholt   

Yep.  This time of year, I use the Kleen White, warm, hot months, the Silver/Grey.  I get most off it at Wall Mart or Tractor Supply.  I run the gas version in my Jeep!  Rich, totally agree. 

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jleamont   
1 hour ago, manholt said:

hot months, the Silver/Grey

Just picked up a case for the 2018 season once it begins.

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ISPJS   

Having a diesel work truck back in Illinois (2012 to 2014) most stations started having a winter blend.  I still added Diesel Kleen with every fill up during the winter.  Never had a fuel gel issue on the F350.

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fagnaml   

Let me, a Petroleum Refinery Operations Manager a few years ago, chime in about No.1 and No.2 Diesel, kerosene and their "cold properties".   To start, No.1 Diesel and No.2 Diesel are "old" product names that are no longer in use in the Petroleum Refining/Marketing business.   Those names went away ten years ago when the EPA implemented the requirement that all "on highway" diesel must be Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel (ULSD) which has a sulfur content less than 15 parts per million.   ULSD is the "diesel" we all use most of the time has a boiling range of 550 F to 690 F.   ULSD has a Cloud Point specification (the temperature at which wax crystals first start to form) of +20 F during warm months and +10 F during winter months which is great for winter driving south of Interstate 40 and not so good north of I-40.

No.1 Diesel is simply kerosene that was labeled "diesel" for heavy truck use.   The No.1 Diesel product name was replaced with Ultra Low Sulfur Kerosene (ULSK) which has the same maximum sulfur content of 15 parts per million as ULSD.   ULSK has a boiling range of 380 F to 550 F and has a cloud point of -40 F which is fantastic for northern U.S. winters.   Your favorite truck stop north of I-40 may or may not sell ULSK during the winter months as the availability is limited and the price is usually high as ULSK "demand" is very inconsistent and extremely dependent on weather conditions each year.   Kerosene is also the lowest volume of product produced by a refinery simply because there is not much kerosene in a barrel of crude oil.  The vast majority of kerosene produced by refineries is sold as Commercial Jet Fuel to power your favorite United, Southwest or other airplane.  Commercial airlines only use kerosene based jet fuel (by contrast small, privately owned single engine airplanes typically use gasoline base fuel that is aptly named Aviation Gasoline).

When a Refinery process a very heavy crude or very waxy crude, the diesel product produced may not meet the Cloud Point specification.  When that happens, the Refinery will add a "cloud point depressant" (which is a kerosene based additive) to lower the cloud point.   The "chemicals" in the cloud point depressant have an extremely low cloud point (e.g. -100 F or lower) thus only a small amount of cloud point depressant must be blended into the ULSD.

The Cloud Point Depressant used in "bulk" by Refineries is essentially the same additive that is packaged and sold for retail customers (you and me) as the "white bottle" Diesel Fuel Supplement + Cetane Boost & Winterizer sold by Power Service at your favorite Walmart.    Both the "gray bottle" and "white bottle" diesel additives sold by Power Service use kerosene as the "carrier fluid" for the detergent and cloud point depressant chemicals in those products.   The "cetane boost" shown on the labels of those additives can claimed as the kerosene carrier fluid has a slightly higher cetane rating that the ULSD purchased at the pump.   Adding a 32 ounce (0.25 gallon) bottle of these additives to 100 gallons of diesel in your motorhome will give an almost  immeasurable increase in cetane in your tank.  The "cetane boost" stamp on the bottle, while true, is essentially a product marketing statement.

For folks north of I-40, if you can find ULSK, use it in a 25/75 mix with ULSD i.e. 25% ULSK / 75% ULSD.  Expect to pay a rather significant price premium for ULSK over ULSD hence why "truckers" use as little ULSK as possible and "blend" the ULSK into their tanks.  If you can't find ULSK (which you likely will not find) then use the "white bottle" Power Service Diesel Fuel Supplement/Winterizer or Howe's Diesel Treat / Anti-Gel or some other brand of "winterizer/anti-gel" additive.   To assure the additive is mixed well in your tanks, pour the additive into the  tank then fill with ULSD.   These additives will get very minimal mixing with the diesel AFTER the tank is filled.

I hope you find this short dissertation helpful.

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wolfe10   

Thanks, Mike.

Excellent explanation.  So for most diesel RV owners, the PS in white bottle from Walmart may be easier in very cold conditions than doing a "fire drill" looking for ULSK.

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Yes, Thanks Mike.  

The information fills in some of the gaps that I have had regarding the low temperature information. 

The cloud point has always been an item just on the other side of the door.

Rich.

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jleamont   

Mike, thank you for the explanation. Where does the Bio fuel come into play for the above explanation? From my experience that happens after the your refinery in another "refinery". I'm assuming you saw my photos on the previous page? That pump had a B-20 decal on it.

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manholt   

To me, very interesting!  My work as a retired Petroleum Engineer, was to drill for oil and gas, not refine it !  That part was never high on my wish list...now I got a taste of what I was missing! Thank you. :)

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1 hour ago, jleamont said:

Mike, thank you for the explanation. Where does the Bio fuel come into play for the above explanation? From my experience that happens after the your refinery in another "refinery". I'm assuming you saw my photos on the previous page? That pump had a B-20 decal on it.

Great question, Joe. Since I've never experienced diesel turning to wax like n your photo, my dumb question is will it turn back to liquid when it warms. No laughing please, I'm just curious.

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manholt   

Jim S.

There is no dumb question on the Forum!  My guess would be yes, but much higher heat than your thinking about...kind of like Paraffin extraction from crude, there is or was such a plant in Bay Town off of I-10 before Belmont, TX. 

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obedb   

Fagnami/ great post.

Kinda backs up what I experienced in ND. The locals knew what they had to do to keep their diesel  rigs working and it is usually a harsh environment in the winter. As a trucker, I looked at the temps I might encounter  during travel in really cold country. Most additives were laughed at as mouse milk by drivers (back then) that did not want to shiver  inside of a sleeping bag while help might be on the way. I experienced a come to the Lord moment after the ultra low sulfur diesel was introduced.

My fuel waxed up overnight. The local racks (and we have two in the Harrisburg area)  had not figured out  the blend or maybe it was downstream. Don't know, but my rig started, but immediately started to stumble or miss. The owner of  the shop where I traded was there trying to start two other trucks. He offered me a bottle of Howes fuel treatment and in a very short time I was running on all cylinders. My day got better, and I kept some handy after that  in the winter. I now use PowerService additives.

When low sulfur  was introduced in the early 1990' s similar problem occurred . Diesel rigs quit running (including MB cars). I was rescued by a good mechanic that time also. Thanks government regulations.

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2 hours ago, elkhartjim said:

Great question, Joe. Since I've never experienced diesel turning to wax like n your photo, my dumb question is will it turn back to liquid when it warms. No laughing please, I'm just curious.

In my experience, yes. When my step van had the fuel gel on the way to work I had to have it towed to a shop. They left in inside for a few hours and then were able to start it like normal. Then they could add the anti-gel additive and get it worked through the system. I could have tried blowing a torpedo heater at it, but it was just too cold to even bother that day. The joy of life in the north!

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fagnaml   

Joe --

Biodiesel is manufactured from vegetable oils/grease and/or animal fats.   Vegetable oil / animal fat is a triglyceride which is three "diesel molecules" held together by a glycerin molecule.   Triglycerides by their nature are very paraffinic (waxy) and solidify a very warm temperatures (think hot bacon grease that becomes solid at 60 F).   The biodiesel manufacturing process breaks the triglyceride molecule into three separate diesel molecules with glycerin as by-product.   The resultant biodiesel product remains as a very paraffinic/waxy product.  Very paraffinic diesels have very high cetane ratings (60-70 cetane vs. 42 cetane at the pump) and because of their paraffinicity are also very good solvents. The EPA along with the Refining industry and engine manufacturers (Cummins, Caterpillar et al) determined that diesel sold at the pump must not contain more than 20% biodiesel to assure various natural and synthetic rubber components in the fuel system would not be "dissolved" by the biodiesel.    Pure biodiesel is a great fuel due to its high cetane rating and clean burning properties (i.e. no soot/particulates, low NOx emissions, etc.).  Problem is pure biodiesel is a solid at ~30 F and it attacks rubber components in a fuel system.

Triglycerides also contain oxygen molecules some of which remain attached to the biodiesel molecule hence biodiesel is an "oxygenated fuel" which is part of why it burns so cleanly.   The downside of oxygen molecules is the oxygen accelerates the normal oxidation of diesel fuel that occurs as diesel sits unused in any kind of storage tank including motorhome tanks.  As diesel oxidizes a heavy, darker color "gunk" polymer is created.  Oxygen also promotes bacteria growth in diesel.  That bacteria is a "slimy", off-white to tan color material.

Having said all of this, the photo showing the clogged fuel filter to me looks like "gunk" that formed from oxidized diesel and/or from bacteria growth.   At room temperature, no wax crystals would exist in a B20 biodiesel blend.   It would have been interesting to place that gunky filter in a 150 F degree oven to see if the gunk disappeared as most waxes have a melting point of 120-130 F.  I highly suspect the gunk on the filter is bacterial "slime".  

Given that most of us at best drive our motorhome a few hours per month and/or they can sit for months (especially for the winter Texans!) it would be good practice to use a good quality diesel fuel stabilizer (I use the Sta-bil brand stabilizer --> https://www.goldeagle.com/diesel-care/ ) and an biocide.  The Power Service website has a good description of the bacteria growth problem associated with ULSD and biodiesel blends --> http://powerservice.com/psp_product/bio-kleen-diesel-fuel-biocide/

The Power Service products are available at your favorite Walmart.   In the Houston area, I've only found the Sta-Bil brand diesel stabilizer at Tractor Supply stores.   Don't use the "pink" color Sta-Bil brand stabilizer as that product is designed for gasoline only.   I recall in previous posts that Carl has advocated the routine use of a biocide.

Hope this info helps!

p.s.  And now you know why tryglicerides are bad for cardiovascular health.  Who wants big, waxy molecules plugging up an artery??

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Thanks Mike. 

Better then sitting in on a chemistry lesson.  That I have not attended in many years!

That was way before Bio-Fuels.

Rich.

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jleamont   

Mike, thank you for the explanation. When I worked for a utility they were purchasing B20. Here's where it got sticky (excuse the pun) they would by filtered fryer grease have it put 15% of a tanker (8000 gallon tanker) go and top off the trailer with B5 from a credible refinery, the theory was the two would blend while in route. :wacko:

All I can say is somewhere there is a landfill with many many fuel filters from those fuel islands and fleet. We were changing fuel filters on the islands 2-3 times a week and when the temperatures dropped below 32 on the equipment daily. The filters always looked like someone butter them. 

I have no engineering degree like you, but I'm pretty sure you didn't need one to see how that was going to turn out.

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jleamont   

Jim, sorry...yes in a room around 70 degrees they were dripping stringy slime. Reminded me of a fresh oyster  :wacko:

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RayIN   

The Power Service Diesel 9.1.1 in a red bottle treats 100G diesel fuel. Since I topped off my tank last fall, I added a bottle of 9.1.1 to the tank 2 weeks ago, just prior to the below zero weeks we've had since then. If it was not needed, $12/bottle was cheap insurance IMO.

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When you stop and think about it, HD was hoping that folks with all types of power mowers would see it there and purchase it. One of their marketing people thinking ahead.

Herman

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jleamont   

Since the quality of gasoline has dropped significantly also I use Sta-bil in my gas cans for the mower, generator and snow blower. I put the correct amount in and fuel them up. Have done it this way for at least 5 years now. I feel better when one of the above engines are not being used the gas should be good.

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You are lucky this year you get to burn all that old gas out of the snow blower. :o

I don't fill up with out adding Diesel Kleen.  

fagnaml , Why do refinery's constantly produce diesel with a lower than recommended Cetane rating? 

Bill

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fagnaml   

Bill --

All diesel sold in the U.S. has a minimum diesel cetane index/rating of 40 which has been the minimum cetane requirement for all of my years in the refining business.   I'll admit I haven't looked at my Cummins 5.7L ISB engine info regarding a minimum cetane requirement.   When product specifications are developed, the engine manufacturers / refiners / EPA all work closely together to set fuel quality specifications for gasoline, diesel and jet fuel.  Below are screen snapshots of Colonial Pipeline diesel specs (Gulf Coast & East Coast markets) and Magellan Pipeline diesel specs (Mid-Continent & Upper Midwest markets) and ExxonMobil's FAQ showing the 40 minimum cetane spec.

Do you have Cummins or other diesel engine manufactures info for minimum cetane requirements?

5a5391553d3e8_ColonialULSDSpec.PNG.57ec945e37693ac6c0d0ef1e90b517a6.PNG

 

5a53919e7799e_MagellanULSDSpec.PNG.8b202c8f763e67cafe2f2c394ff60357.PNG

 

5a53923975023_ExxonMobilULSDSpecs.thumb.PNG.6951aeca29140bd10c06ee56107179cc.PNG

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jleamont   

Mike, our supplier told me that this can decrease over time, they leave the refinery above the minimum but often by the time it gets to the consumer its lower from sitting in storage.

Is that true?

We have had a few tested last year that came back just a little over bunker fuel, fuel that was purchased over the road.

 

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fagnaml   

J --

The 40 minimum cetane rating is the quality required at the pump for all of us to purchase.  To assure 40 cetane at the pump, refiners typically produce a 41 cetane product to assure the cetane at the pump is >40.    Cetane rating changes very little if at all while diesel is stored.  The nemeses  for storing diesel are oxidation (diesel will turn black with oxidation products if stored too long), bacteria growth (the slime shown in the fuel filter photo in this string) and moisture.  Hence why the recommended use of a fuel stabilizer and biocide in our motorhome diesel tank.  To mitigate moisture accumulation in our motorhome diesel tanks it would be best to keep the tank full while the motorhome sits unused for a few months at a time (a full tank minimizes air/moisture intrusion into the tank).

"Bunker Fuel" is the term historically used for marine fuels.  The diesel based bunker fuel is known as "No.2 Bunker Fuel".   Currently a higher sulfur content diesel (500 ppm sulfur max) is sold as "locomotive/marine" diesel and has the same 40 minimum cetane requirement as ULSD (which is 15 ppm max sulfur content).  Locomotive/marine diesel is also acceptable for "off-road only" use most notable of which is agricultural use (tractors, water well pump motors, etc.).   

For your next trivia game contest, to meet stricter EPA emissions regulations, all U.S. Ports now require the use of ULSD for ships and commercial boats as they enter U.S. waters, traverse ship canals and while anchored at ports.  Once "out to sea" in international waters, those ships/boats can use whatever fuel they desire (typically a low cost, high sulfur, "heavy" fuel oil).   Additionally, January 1, 2018 brought new home heating oil specifications for the northeastern part of the U.S.   Maine, Massachusetts and Vermont were the remaining states that had not required ULSD for home heating oil.  That changed this past January 1.   All states where heating oil is used to heat homes and businesses now require the use of ULSD in those furnaces.

Burning ULSD to minimize SOx (sulfur oxides) emissions is a good thing for the environment, our communities and our health.  When sulfur oxides mix with moisture (rain, snow, the moisture in our lungs) sulfuric and/or sulfonic acid is formed.  You may have heard the term "acid rain" which was coined several years ago when rain that reached the ground was dangerously acidic especially in China and India that at the time had no restrictions on sulfur oxide emissions from coal fired power plants.

And now that I've totally derailed the discussion from the original topic,  I'd like to know how RSFOD42 and his diesel performed in frigid Michigan.

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