Old diesel fuel

AceNZAceNZ Solar Expert Posts: 104 ✭✭✭✭
I have about 25 gallons of diesel fuel in 5 gallon plastic storage containers. It's about 6 yrs old, and has never been treated. I had hoped to use it in my car, but somehow never quite got my act together.

I've heard diesel never goes completely bad, but I've also heard that's not a good idea to use it after a couple of years or so in storage. But the time has come that it needs to be moved.

Any chance it can be saved, or should I just dispose of it somehow? If it can be saved, how would I do it, and it likely to be worth the effort? If it can't be, what's a good way to dispose of it?

Comments

  • richrich Solar Expert Posts: 62 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    I burn used motor oil from a local dealer in my cummins...of-corse I run it threw a centerfuge and filter first, I burn this at a 50/50 blend with regular diesel.(add sea foam)..I dont see why the old diesel wont burn in the mix, infact I dont think there would be any problems if U mix it down with fresh.
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,142 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    I would check with a commercial fuel distributor, and see if your area has a problem with the algae or whatever it is that can grow in old diesel. There is an additive you can buy , it's pricey though.

    hth
     
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  • VicVic Solar Expert Posts: 2,970 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    The largest problem with stored Diesel fuel is algae. If the storage containers are topped off, there is much less chance of the fuel absorbing water from the air. This water allows the algae to grow in the fuel.

    Fuel treatments -- Biocides -- can kill existing algae (SHOCK treatment), or if the fuel was treated at time of purchase will help keep the algae from growing.

    It might be a good idea to use some form of clean filter material, and carefully pour the stored fuel through the filter, into a clear container. Most problems with the fuel should be visible in the filter, or in the clear container.

    The beginnings of algae growth, often appears as dark material. A significant algae growth can appear as slime. In very cold conditions, Diesel can gel, which is a different problem. But in NZ, it is probably not that cold.

    Have used a Biocide to treat Diesel fuel here, and it seems to work well ... knock, knock.

    For extended storage of Diesel fuel, believe that BB Bill suggested changing brands of Biocide to one with a different active ingredient, due to the possibility of algae adapting to one brand in continuous use, IIRC.

    In the USA, there are fuel "Polishing Services", that filter and treat fuel stored in large tanks for long periods. Basically, this is filtering the fuel through a very fine filter and Biocide treatment, as I understand it. Good Luck, Vic
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  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    This is becoming a real problem in most if not all of Canada due to regulations limiting the sulphur (sulfur in America) content in fuel oil. The reduction reduces pollution when the fuel is burned, but the downside is that the sulphur was a biocide preventing algie growth. Now that the sulphur is gone, the algie is free to grow.
    Something to also keep in mind if you heat with oil. :(
  • CDN_VTCDN_VT Solar Expert Posts: 492 ✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    I add sulfur and all the bad stuff, Just know how to purchase it.
    OK Most Important is WHAT CAR ? Year & model please. 300D Merk , it's a tank & will even burn the growth (just remove fuel filters) them old Helix fuel pumps were great. Bosch DBA style , nope. So for me to answer , need to know type of Diesel fuelling system. Home heater blast furnaces might go thru a few filters & nozzles if you have growth. Growth is normally with open to air venting Eg Boats !

    VT
  • AceNZAceNZ Solar Expert Posts: 104 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    I tried filtering diesel once before -- it wasn't easy or pleasant.

    I guess I could pour some in a glass container and see how bad it looks. I'll also ask around about possible additives or maybe a more automated filtering mechanism of some kind. Could be a good thing to know down the road.
  • AceNZAceNZ Solar Expert Posts: 104 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel
    CDN_VT wrote: »
    OK Most Important is WHAT CAR ? Year & model please.

    2007 Toyota Prado VX D4D Diesel (1KD-FTV engine: 3L, turbo, 4 cylinders, in-line)
  • CDN_VTCDN_VT Solar Expert Posts: 492 ✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    For that style of fueling system & Diesel , Not worth the risk till you get sample to a fuel lab .. Im in the position of doing a siphon system to filter it with a few days plus. If it has growth , time is longer.Fuel wicking / siphon filters are on e-bay.
    I get old fuel from storage tanks , LPG to J2 .. Process it all ..Kinda like making beer
    Just like fire wood , heats more than once,


    Edit , is for clarification of LAB , They can let you know the amount of acids etc . You have a low sulfur / DBA fuel pump style in that engine, Fuel pump rebuilds are not worth a few bucks saved. If your were to drive a tank of fuel every two days , then , just carry spare filters , its the sitting that kills the steel.
    HTH's

    VT
  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    I've used a recycled standard little electric, in tank type fuel pump from a car to withdraw fuel from a tank, force it through an oil furnace type fuel filter and into a second tank. It's not fast, but it's easy and clean. If you're not in a hurry you can drop the pump in the tank, power the pump from a 12 volt source, then go have lunch. Depending on the volume to be transferred, it might be all done when you get back. I would be concerned though about running the pump dry if it runs out of fuel before you get back. But it DOES work.
    I've also been told that for roughly $80.00 I can purchase one litre of high end fuel additive from a truckers supply outlet that will treat 1000 gallons and prevent bio-growth. That I haven't tried, nor researched, but was told about it by local boaters.
  • AceNZAceNZ Solar Expert Posts: 104 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    Thanks for the ideas.

    Will do some investigation with local suppliers to see what I can do.
  • peakbaggerpeakbagger Solar Expert Posts: 341 ✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    I have home heating fuel about 2.5 years old as I mostly heat with wood and solar. I have a jug of fuel system biocide ready to go in the tanks, that I bought from a marine supplier.I think its called "biobor" I don't want to refill the tanks them so I need to rig up a pump arrangement to blend in the biocide. Marine boat owners seem to have a lot more issues with biology than home use but my understanding is once it gets in system its very difficult to kill.
  • jcheiljcheil Solar Expert Posts: 722 ✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel

    Look at a product called PRI-D (or PRI-G for gasoline).

    www.batterystuff.com/fuel-treatments/PRID128.html

    I use the PRI-G in all of my stored fuel and have never had an issue even after a year of storage. Without it, within 60 days the gas would turn to varnish here in FL. Also, you only need a VERY tiny amount so one gallon treats 2000 gallons of fuel.

    At the hospital I worked at we used the PRI-D product in the 5000g fuel tanks and never had any issues and I know that it sat for many many years at times. They even claim that it can "recover" bad fuel, however I have no thoughts on that.

    I can only tell you that I know it works from my personal use.
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  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Old diesel fuel
    jcheil wrote: »
    Look at a product called PRI-D (or PRI-G for gasoline).

    www.batterystuff.com/fuel-treatments/PRID128.html

    I use the PRI-G in all of my stored fuel and have never had an issue even after a year of storage. Without it, within 60 days the gas would turn to varnish here in FL. Also, you only need a VERY tiny amount so one gallon treats 2000 gallons of fuel.

    At the hospital I worked at we used the PRI-D product in the 5000g fuel tanks and never had any issues and I know that it sat for many many years at times. They even claim that it can "recover" bad fuel, however I have no thoughts on that.

    I can only tell you that I know it works from my personal use.
    Very interesting, but reading up on the link I see where it "stabilizes" the fuel, and "works chemically within diesel fuel to improve the combustion process", but I don't see any note on it containing, or being a biocide. Perhaps I missed it.
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