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CraigsOutside

Biodiesel at ARCO

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The local ARCO near my work has just in the last month or so, put in a couple new pumps, one of them being a bio-diesel pump (the other is the ethanol blend). I haven't stopped for a fill up there yet, as it's about 10 cents higher than other diesel prices. I currently add in the 2 stroke oil for the extra lube, which of course increases the pump cost, probably by about nine or ten cents. Being relatively new to the diesel world, I'm unsure about whether or not to use it. I believe it's a 10% blend. Can anyone share pros and cons of using bio-diesel instead of regular diesel?

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Biodiesel typically has less BTU content (high cetane) vs. petroleum and 2 cycle oil mix (lower cetane).Biodiesel can and has separated and settled to the bottom of tanks in the cold of winter. Homebrew Biodiesel tends to be dirty fuel common to plug up filters premature. Homebrew Biodiesel has been known to cause injection pump damage. The only bonus to biodiesel is its lubricity its extremely good.

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Some advantages to running Bio: 1 Less dino oil = more 'eco-friendly' 2 Your truck will run a bit smoother less vibration at idle3 Your truck will be emitting less particulate matter (soot)4 Your fuel system will get cleaned out (tank too)5 Commercial Bio does not settle like home brew and is not 'dirty'6 Bio has excellent lubricityAround here is a place that sells B-99 and B-20. Bio is going for less than diesel here and the B-20 is about 20 cents a gallon less and B-99 is about 25 cents less. I run the B-20 most of the time. I have run a few tankfulls of B-99 and yes, my truck runs smoother, but, the mileage is slightly lower (less BTU like MM said), the truck hazes on an idle more, the power is slightly lower, and the exhaust stinks like burned cooking oil. B-20 doesn't seem to have any of the 'problems' that B-99 has.

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Thanks for the helpful replies. Seeing how it's still hovering around 95F here in So Cal, I'm going to try a tank or two, though I'll wait until I'm closer to 1/4 tank to fill up. I'll try to report back how it works for me.

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Some advantages to running Bio: 1 Less dino oil = more 'eco-friendly' 2 Your truck will run a bit smoother less vibration at idle 3 Your truck will be emitting less particulate matter (soot) 4 Your fuel system will get cleaned out (tank too) 5 Commercial Bio does not settle like home brew and is not 'dirty' 6 Bio has excellent lubricity Around here is a place that sells B-99 and B-20. Bio is going for less than diesel here and the B-20 is about 20 cents a gallon less and B-99 is about 25 cents less. I run the B-20 most of the time. I have run a few tankfulls of B-99 and yes, my truck runs smoother, but, the mileage is slightly lower (less BTU like MM said), the truck hazes on an idle more, the power is slightly lower, and the exhaust stinks like burned cooking oil. B-20 doesn't seem to have any of the 'problems' that B-99 has.

Does not Minnesota law mandate at least 5% bio in all diesel sold within the state????:shrug::smart: I've run B-20 here in northern Illinois; and most, if not all Minnesota gets colder than Illinois....................and I've not heard of an epidemic of gelling, separating, etc. up there with bio in recent years.

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Some advantages to running Bio:

1 Less dino oil = more 'eco-friendly'

2 Your truck will run a bit smoother less vibration at idle

3 Your truck will be emitting less particulate matter (soot)

4 Your fuel system will get cleaned out (tank too)

5 Commercial Bio does not settle like home brew and is not 'dirty'

6 Bio has excellent lubricity

Around here is a place that sells B-99 and B-20. Bio is going for less than diesel here and the B-20 is about 20 cents a gallon less and B-99 is about 25 cents less. I run the B-20 most of the time. I have run a few tankfulls of B-99 and yes, my truck runs smoother, but, the mileage is slightly lower (less BTU like MM said), the truck hazes on an idle more, the power is slightly lower, and the exhaust stinks like burned cooking oil. B-20 doesn't seem to have any of the 'problems' that B-99 has.

Be careful...

3 Your truck will be emitting less particulate matter (soot)

Might be a bigger carbon footprint...

http://forum.mopar1973man.com/threads/2158-Biofuels-emit-400-percent-more-CO2-than-regular-fuels?highlight=biodiesel+400%25

4 Your fuel system will get cleaned out (tank too)

Doubt that if the tanks is already cleaned out then there should be no reason for frequent filter changes unless the fuel itself is dirty.

Posted Image

And my last filter change was at 30k miles... Filter still look good... Remember this is petroleum fuel not biodiesel.

http://forum.mopar1973man.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=6071&d=1376955306

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Does not Minnesota law mandate at least 5% bio in all diesel sold within the state????:shrug::smart: I've run B-20 here in northern Illinois; and most, if not all Minnesota gets colder than Illinois....................and I've not heard of an epidemic of gelling, separating, etc. up there with bio in recent years.

Yep, we are required to use B-5 at a minimum.

Be careful... Might be a bigger carbon footprint...

That is why I said "Less particulate matter (soot)". Soot and carbon dioxide are a little different.

Doubt that if the tanks is already cleaned out then there should be no reason for frequent filter changes unless the fuel itself is dirty. And my last filter change was at 30k miles... Filter still look good... Remember this is petroleum fuel not biodiesel.

I know the fuel should be clean, but B-99 WILL clean things out. Maybe this sign at my local Bio place will explain it better:

post-18-138698208565_thumb.jpg

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My cousin burns over 1000 gallons of B20 a month on all the farm equipment and trucks and has never had a problem. He recently had to rebuild one of the engines out of his 966 and the injectors were clean as a whistle. JR

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This might be a little off topic here, (if so, sorry) but it pertains to Bio and Petroleum Diesel.

It just hit me that in the cold winter months in the northern areas, diesel gels and there is a need for some areas to go to #1 diesel. This pertains to the gel point temp for both diesel.

[*]Is the gel point temp for Bio diesel higher / lower than petroleum diesel, or the same?

[*]For petroleum diesel, when using 2 stroke oil as an additive, does this change the gel point temp?

[*]Has anyone noticed when using Bio (or a ratio of Bio) over petroleum diesel, is there an advantage in winter?

[*]For those that live way up north, do they add 5%, 20%, ??% Bio in winter or not? (sorry, I never noticed this when traveling in the northern area during winter months.)

I'm sorry, but these questions just came over this old coot.

Any answers ?

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Jim, I live just west of the tip of Lake Superior and we are mandated by the state to run a minimum of B-5. post-18-138698208773_thumb.jpgThis may answer some of your questions.

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Thanks MmTom, it did give me some info, but in the winter in your area, is that #1 diesel with Bio, or are you still #2 with Bio ?Until I was pondering this thread, I never wondered if adding 2 stroke oil to diesel changed the temperature for the jell point. Funny how things just pops up.Here, we're #2 diesel all year long. On trips when I need fuel, I usually just fill and keep rolling.

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I have not purchased straight #1 fuel for many years. The stations around here use a blend of #1 and #2. The colder it is the more #1 used. I haven't had any problem with fuel other than a plugged filter (in the summer).

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I have not purchased straight #1 fuel for many years. The stations around here use a blend of #1 and #2. The colder it is the more #1 used. I haven't had any problem with fuel other than a plugged filter (in the summer).

Two stroke oil has a lower "pour point" than diesel fuel does. So adding 2 stroke oil; even in the small ratios that we do, has to lower the pour point of the diesel once mixed. It's probably "winterized" No.2 diesel that's mixed with the bio.........buts that's a SWAG.:smart:

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First off, thanks to everyone for all their input.

Second, I did find that the lubricity sure was noticeable over using 2-stroke and regular diesel. On the first fill up, anyway. The second time through the pump and filling up, the blend didn't seem to feel as smooth, if that makes sense. I did notice that a sticker on the pump indicated that while the biodiesel sold there was supposed to B20, it could in fact range from 5% to 20%. I this seemed to validate my perception of how the engine ran during this time. I probably got a 20% batch the first time through and something closer to 5% the second time through to fill up. The price had gone down during that time as well, from 4.239 to 4.199 per gal. This was a rate consistent with the Chevron station across the street but significantly higher than other ARCO stations near home at 4.099 (now at 4.069) not including the cost of adding 2-stroke. The use of biodiesel purchased at this station was in no way cost saving (less than a dollar per fill up, not significant to me); it only saved the amount of time it took to prepare/add 2-stroke to regular diesel. There are no other stations in the area that I know of that sell biodiesel.

Lastly, I've been looking into making the change to using synthetic oil and reading (and confusing myself) as much as possible on that topic. I don't recall finding mention in a forum thread, but AMSOIL has a TSB dating from 5/5/06 on the use of biodiesel fuels and its effect on motor oils. In short, they indicated that while manufacturers give the ok to use 5%, anything above that could be detrimental. Cummins and Volvo recommend cutting the oil change interval in half and International indicates a possible reduction in engine life. AMSOIL does not recommend extended oil change intvervals when using biodiesel at any ratio.

Link to AMSOIL TSB: https://www.amsoil.com/techservicesbulletin/MotorOil/TSB%20MO-2006-05-04%20Biodiesel.pdf

The positive benefits to me, do not outweigh the negative effects nearly enough to justify using biodiesel. One of the big reasons for making the move to a diesel engine for me, was the potential engine longevity. If the use of biodiesel at concentrations over 5% can result in shortened engine life (something acknowledged by OEMs), that is enough to keep me from using it. Further, if the use of biodiesel cuts engine oil life in half or precludes extended oil change intervals when using synthetic lubricants, maintenance costs rise, as do the increased costs of oil disposal. While the idea of using biodiesel fuel as a way to put waste oils to use and may actually be safe to use, the use of biodiesel does not seem to make good economic or environmental sense to me. So, I have decided not to use biofuels in the future.

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Seen something in that write up that caught my eye.

Lower Energy Content (2) :

The energy content of neat biodiesel fuel is about eleven percent (11%) lower than that of petroleum based diesel fuel, resulting in a power loss in engine operation.

Now, the normal standards are diesel is 15% higher energy than gasoline per gallon on average. Bio reduces energy by 11%, leaving our trucks with 4% higher energy than using a gasoline truck. Thus costing us more money per mile moving our vehicles and any load we're hauling / towing ? And from what I've been seeing on the highway, with 5% to 10% Bio, the prices are much the same as locally priced straight diesel. Is this cost effective for the general public ?

I remember Ex-President Gore and his group pushing the clean fuels (gas).

Old gasoline had lead and cost $ per gallon with X mpg.

Removed the lead and injected MTBE, cost more per gallon, less mpg, consumer bought more gasoline to do the same with vehicle.

Remove MTBE, Oxygenate gasoline, cost more per gallon, less mpg, consumer bought more gasoline to do the same with vehicle.

Still Oxygenate gasoline, inject corn squeezing, cost more per gallon, less mpg, consumer buys more gasoline to do the same with vehicle AND more for household food consumption.

Now, I'm just wondering if the Gore gang is pushing the same with diesel for their higher profits only ?

5% to 10% Bio in diesel on the highway is the same price I see here for normal diesel without the Bio. Shouldn't it be % less ?

Europe is using more diesel than ever before because of the energy content per gallon, allowing the engine manufactures to design and get more mpg, more horse power and not as much trash added to the vehicles as we have.

What are their % of Bio per gallon at the average pump ?

Am I thinking and seeing wrong ?

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I would like to see a study of pollutants based on a per mile basis instead of just a per gallon basis. I dont know that older technology would win but it would be interesting for all to see the comparison.

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The biodiesel available to me at this station I had mentioned, the price per gallon is consistently fifteen cents higher than #2 diesel available at comparable stations. Even when including the cost of adding 2-stoke oil, the biodiesel is still more expensive for me to use. With the apparent variance in bio quantity (5% to 20%) I might even need to add 2-stroke to the bio if it's a batch on the low side. It was mentioned in this thread (my mntom from MN in post #3) that biodiesel for others might be less expensive than #2 diesel. It just isn't for me. On conspiracy theories, there may be some validity to some of them and even some involving oil companies. The primary reasons for the changes in gasoline (lead, etc) and diesel (sulphur) is to reduce pollution and measurable particles in the air (atmosphere). Obviously, the most noticeable consequence to the changes in fuels to the consumer is the reduction in mpg and a slight increase in fuel costs. I do have to say that, growing up in southern California, I have see a significant difference in air quality. I remember using the push mower on my grandmother's house in the seventies and my lungs burning and being able to practically eat the smog for a snack afterwards. While smog levels are still high here, they are significantly lower than they used to be. I don't remember the last time there was a "smog alert" here; they seemed commonplace back then. Even with the huge reductions on gas mileage seen from the seventies to today on small cars and consequentially higher fuel consumption, the air quality and airborne pollutants are lower. I found a report from Spain dating from 2012 on future fuels in the EU. It seems that the EU (with some minimal variances country to country) has B7 available with some adding up to another 3% in HVO sources to get up to a max of B10. There are some small/specific market fleets that might utilize B30 up to B100 for adapted vehicles. A general average at the pump seems to be around B5 and ranges from 0% to 10%. http://www.upcomillas.es/centros/bp/Documentos/Actividades/Foro/2012/foro_12_ken-rose.pdf A vote that came out last month (9/13) places restrictions on agricultural use for bio-fuels at 6%. The EU is more concerned that the US with keeping agriculture aimed at actually producing food rather than fuel.

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agriculture turned to fuel production is detrimental to human life. I used to be an advocate of ethanol until I saw what it has done to food cost. I still believe in using renewable energy, but not at the cost of food in ones belly.

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