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Author Topic: diesel fuel additives worth the money ?  (Read 2183 times)
sledhead
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« on: December 02, 2012, 06:30:07 AM »

We are getting ready to go south to florida.I just filled up at 95 us gal total is 197 gal tank . I put in diesel kleen by slickdiesel for the cold weather and the cetane boost.Now it says that it will add up to 4-6 numbers ? to the cetane .What cetane is in diesel ? Did I just waste $15. or will this help with winter performance.        thanks  dave
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« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2012, 07:15:37 AM »

The fuel you just bought in Ontario is winter fuel which is blended with the necessary additives to deal with cold temperatures. So yes, you just wasted your money. Fuel additives are snake oil.

With that said, I am reading lately that there are way more warranty claims for Bosh fuel pump failures on the Powerstrokes, Duramax and VW TDI in the US than Canada, because the American fuel has a lower lubricity standard than the Canadian diesel. Ford actually recommends their branded lubricity additive for their new Powerstroke. I think I will use it next time we take the new truck into the US.

But I would not worry about that with a Detroit because it doesn't have the high pressure common rail fuel injection system like late model diesels. Our buses will run just fine on just about anything.

If it is still cold when you come home and you are running on southern fuel, you might want to put in some anti gel additive bought at a truck stop. Otherwise, just fuel up and go. Have a good trip.

JC

 
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JC
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Oonrahnjay
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« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2012, 07:19:13 AM »

 We are getting ready to go south to florida.I just filled up at 95 us gal total is 197 gal tank . I put in diesel kleen by slickdiesel for the cold weather and the cetane boost.Now it says that it will add up to 4-6 numbers ? to the cetane .What cetane is in diesel ? Did I just waste $15. or will this help with winter performance.        thanks  dave  

     The two additive products from Diesel Kleen are the white bottle and grey bottle (the red bottle is only for un-gelling an already-gelled up system).  If you used the white bottle, you're good.  The white bottle is made for cold weather - it has an antigel (in fact, if you put one of the big bottles - I think they're like 74 oz. now - in, you're good down to about -20 degrees F) and it also has a water remover.  The water removal is important because in fairly cold temperatures (say, zero and below F), you can have treated fuel that won't gel but water will freeze into ice crystals and block filter, etc.  The white bottle also has some cetane improvers -- a higher cetane is good for cold starts and gives a little more MGP on your fuel consumption; the white bottle also has lubrication improvers.  It says on the bottle that it's good for 250 gallons and using a little extra helps a bit more so half a bottle for 100 gallons is about right.

     The grey bottle does NOT have the antigel or the water removal; but it has higher levels of cetane improver and also the lubricant.  

     It depends on what you're doing.  If you're in the north and you're heading to Florida in cold weather, if you put in the white bottle, you did a good thing.  It is even MORE important to put in a bottle heading north -- diesel fuel is treated at the pump in the US to match the climate (usually the cheapest way to do this is to add kerosene).  So fuel you buy in Florida won't have much cold-temperature additive; if you fill up in Ft. Lauderdale and driver Buffalo and hit really cold winter, it's likely that your fuel will gel up and plug your fuel injection system.

     Since you're north and going south, if you used the white bottle, you've made your engine start better and you've removed any water that may have built up over the summer from condensation.  You also added some extra protection from fuel gelling and you also provided better lube to the working systems inside your fuel injection pump and fuel injectors.  So, no you didn't waste $15 (in my opinion); but putting in a bottle (or even half a bottle) will be a better advantage when you're coming home.  If you used the grey bottle, you probably made the engine easier to start and increased your fuel economy but you didn't get the best *winter* improvements.



      A Note:  Additives only do you any good if you need the improvement that they give you.  If you have an older low-tech engine that doesn't require much lube in the fuel pump and injectors and isn't tuned for extra power, adding an additive probably won't do you much good.  But if you're driving from warm to cold (and thus you need the anti-gel) and if you have a highly tuned injector system (bigger injectors, advanced timing, etc. and thus the improved cetane will help you) and if your injection system has fine tolerances in the moving parts (and so the lubrication improvement will help you), and if you have water in your system and you're driving into colder weather, then the additive will be worth it -- and it may even prevent you being stuck on the side of the road when it's 8 degrees outside!  Some people say that additive are a rip-off and they don't need them and they are probably right FOR THEIR ENGINE/FUEL SYSTEM AND THEIR DRIVING CONDITIONS.  For other bus owners with different engines and different conditions, additives can be valuable.  It's one of those "figger out what you need and get it" things.

      (HTH - I've done a lot of experimenting with additives in my VW diesel -- yeah, pretty different from most bus engines -- but I've consistently seen better fuel economy numbers running Power Service grey bottle all year around, I almost never see temps below about 30 degrees so anti-gel isn't that important to me.  If I were going to drive to Montreal, I would use white bottle instead of the grey for that trip.)
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Bruce H; Wallace (near Wilmington) NC
1976 Daimler (British) Double-Decker Bus; 34' long
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Oonrahnjay
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« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2012, 07:37:10 AM »

  (snip)  With that said, I am reading lately that there are way more warranty claims for Bosh fuel pump failures on the Powerstrokes, Duramax and VW TDI in the US than Canada, because the American fuel has a lower lubricity standard than the Canadian diesel. Ford actually recommends their branded lubricity additive for their new Powerstroke. I think I will use it next time we take the new truck into the US. 

      Yeah, when the US EPA demanded that sulfur be removed from diesel fuel about 5 years ago, it made a big reduction in the lubrication in the fuel.  They put together a big committee to look at the spec for "Ultra Low-Sulfur Diesel Fuel" -- they had ASTM, Amer. Petroleum Institute (API), Nat' Bureau of Standards, engine manufacturers, fuel injection manufacturers, etc. on the committee.  The refiners/wholesalers wanted a "low lubrication" standard to keep their production prices low, engine manufacturers and companies like Bosch and Nippon Denso wanted "high lubrication" because of tight tolerances and clearances in modern fuel injection systems.  Lubrication is measured on the "Wear Scar" test - the higher the number, the more wear.  Bosch and the other fuel injection manufacturers wanted a maximum 480 number for the wear scar test; the refiners were looking at 700 wear scar numbers.  After some argument, the committee settled on a 560 number standard on the wear scar test.   Bosch and Nippon Denso and the other fuel injection manufacturers said that they'd expect to see shorter service life and more outright roadside failures with that number but they got voted down.  Looks like they're right.

     I think (not that I'm an expert on DD's) that JC is right on a DD 2-smoke engine especially one that doesn't have bigger injectors or advanced ignition or other "tuning".  They'll run on pretty much anything.  If you don't need to improve your fuel, it isn't worth the money to buy an additive that will do that. 

     JC and I agree on most things, although our posts above are kinda from a different perspective.  I don't think however that additives are "snake oil".  If you need what they do, they can be very valuable to you.  But if you don't need them, they're a waste of money.  (And I do think that getting water out of a fuel system when you're going on a long trip in the winter -- $8 for half a bottle of "Power Service White" is pretty good insurance, even if you don't need any of the other protection that it gives you.)
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Bruce H; Wallace (near Wilmington) NC
1976 Daimler (British) Double-Decker Bus; 34' long
6-cyl, 4-stroke, Leyland O-680 engine

(New Email -- brucebearnc@ (theGoogle gmail place) .com)
luvrbus
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« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2012, 08:02:01 AM »

On a injection pump system I can see a few additives but for the old 2 strokes and the common rail systems it's waste of money,what are you guys going to use when the fuel changes to the greenhouse stuff in 2014 ?

 Some engines from DD are designed to use B50 diesel for 2014 that should be good in cold weather lol, as for me I am sick of all the EPA regulations myself but the B50 diesel is a Europe deal it has been in use there for several years
« Last Edit: December 02, 2012, 08:13:59 AM by luvrbus » Logged

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sledhead
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« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2012, 08:19:42 AM »

Yes I used the white bottle,I bring one with me for the return trip in the end of january.I guess $15. isn't much for freeze up insurance . What is greenhouse fuel ? Oh don't tell me they are adding corn to diesel ?                      dave
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« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2012, 08:22:55 AM »

It's already here read the pumps when you get to the USA right now it's just B15 but that is changing lol sad part is it is a guessing game the pump may say B5,B10 or B15 and it could be B25 they don't know for sure as it is added to the fuel before delivery
« Last Edit: December 02, 2012, 08:29:52 AM by luvrbus » Logged

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Oonrahnjay
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« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2012, 09:02:54 AM »

  Yes I used the white bottle,I bring one with me for the return trip in the end of january.I guess $15. isn't much for freeze up insurance . What is greenhouse fuel ? Oh don't tell me they are adding corn to diesel ?                      dave   

     Yeah, and the more you go from colder to warmer areas (of if you live in an area with swings of temps in the autumn), the more likely you are to have water in your fuel.  That "white bottle" additive turns the water into a microscopic colloidal suspension (the water is broken up into tiny clumps of molecules that are dispersed through the fuel and they're burned without any problem as the fuel is burned).  Those microscopic bits of water are very abrasive but the lubricant in additives prevents them from doing damage as they go through your injection system (and they probably wouldn't do any harm to DD system anyway but it's good to get that water out).  For your use and your conditions on the trip south, I think getting the water out is at least as big a benefit as the gel-prevention.

      And if you're using the bottle that's about 2 1/2 quarts, as I said before, all you need is half the bottle.  So that's $8. 
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Bruce H; Wallace (near Wilmington) NC
1976 Daimler (British) Double-Decker Bus; 34' long
6-cyl, 4-stroke, Leyland O-680 engine

(New Email -- brucebearnc@ (theGoogle gmail place) .com)
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« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2012, 09:49:45 AM »

One of our girls is in heath care profession I had her call on the ingredients of the Diesel Kleen they have to give the top secrets to those folks,sorry I cannot post the ingredients but I think I would buy unleaded gasoline
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« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2012, 11:30:12 AM »

http://www.powerservice.com/msds/pdf/dk_msds.pdf
All the good stuff!   (See page 5 on.)   However, it's probably no worse that lots of other chemicals we use without a second thought.

John
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« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2012, 11:33:25 AM »

wrong post
« Last Edit: December 02, 2012, 03:19:34 PM by RickB » Logged

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5B Steve
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« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2012, 01:47:49 PM »

http://www.powerservice.com/msds/pdf/dk_msds.pdf
All the good stuff!   (See page 5 on.)   However, it's probably no worse that lots of other chemicals we use without a second thought.

John


   I would like to let everyone know what the above formentioned MSDS SHEET means. "ANY CETANE ADDITIVE" will

  have to have 2-ETHYL-HEXYL-NITRATE.  Depending on the amount will vary on the number that it will raise the quality

  of diesel fuel.  This is what any refinery uses when they make diesel fuel. Nitro glycerin, and TNT also is made from this

 product. The other product mentioned is Aromatic Hydrocarbon, this is the carrier solvent. . Aromatic 100 is a widely

 used carrier, when companys make cetane products. My 2 cents worth!

  Steve 5B......

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sledhead
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« Reply #12 on: December 02, 2012, 03:08:05 PM »

Thanks for the info.        dave                         
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« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2012, 08:59:42 PM »

Since we have not been doing any cold weather driving, I have not had those concerns.  Lubricity is the only thing that I have thought may be short in fuel.  I once read an article, which I can't find now, that rated how well different commercial additives helped diesel lubricity; some did and some did not help much.  However, the article claimed that adding something like a gallon of vegetable oil to 50 gallons of diesel did as well or better than most of the commercial products.  I have not done it in that quantity or even regularly, but do add a half gallon of veggie oil once in a while.  Certainly, I can document no positive or negative effects, but I really do not think it costs anything anyway.
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« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2012, 09:25:47 PM »

Save some money and purchase your additives from the parts vendor of your choice.

Truck stops and gas stations usually sell these things at a premium.

FWIW, my winter time diesel additive is Kleen-Flo's Diesel Fuel Conditioner, both before and after ULSD.
There are savings for buying a case.

Follow any additive's directions for mixing. More isn't always better...

Unless you are selling the stuff!

happy coaching!
buswarrior



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