It’s one thing to discover that your fuel contains algae. But getting rid of it and keeping it away is a very different story. If you don’t want a constant headache, you must win this game.
If you have the correct remedy, treating diesel fuel algae is rather straightforward. But what we truly mean by “easy” is “follow these few tips and you’ll have a good probability of resolving the problem.”
Get Rid Of The Water
This is the first stage in any endeavor to remove algae from the gasoline. Water is required for fuel microorganisms to survive and thrive. Drain the water out mechanically if you have more than half an inch of water (you should be measuring it with a tank stick and some water paste). After that, clean up the remaining with some form of water-absorbing chemical treatment. Everything else won’t work as well if you don’t get rid of the water first.
Apply A Biocide, Not Just A Generic “Water Treatment”
I know we just told you to use chemical treatment to clean up the rest of the water. That advice still holds true. However, the treatment isn’t meant to kill the bacteria; rather, it’s meant to improve the environment so that they can’t flourish in the water. No, you’ll need to kill the active microbial contamination in the tank with a specific biocide. Because fuel biocides kill active living organisms in any liquid they are employed in, they are tightly regulated and restricted. That’s a positive thing in this case. Something that will kill the fungus, mold, bacteria, and algae is ideal. Simply scavenging the water will not suffice.
When we speak with consumers, we advise them to use enough biocide to treat the maximum amount of fuel in the tank they’re considering, not simply the amount of fuel in it at the time.
Assume they have a 12,000 gallon fuel tank with 5,000 gallons of fuel. They will also fill the tank to a maximum of 10,000 gallons. The suggestion would be to add enough biocide to the 5,000 gallon tank to treat 10,000 gallons. That way, when they add gasoline later, they’ll have 10,000 gallons of fuel with just enough biocide to kill everything it comes into touch with.
Because there are usually latent bacteria residing on the tank walls above the gasoline line, this is critical. Using enough biocide to treat the maximum fuel level means that when more fuel is added, the fuel level rises and kills the microorganisms since the fuel contains enough biocide.
Circulate The Fuel To Ensure Best Mixing
This is quite significant. It’s not enough to simply dump biocide on top of current fuel and leave it alone, thinking that the biocide will diffuse down and do its job. The biocide will be injected into the fuel line by industrial bulk fuel users. Why? Because this is the only way to ensure that the biocide is properly mixed in. A biocide won’t work until it comes into actual touch with the organism it’s designed to kill. So, if you want the biocide to work, make sure it’s thoroughly mixed into the fuel. That’s fantastic if you have the technology to inject it into the gasoline line. For many clients, the biocide will be added after the gasoline has been circulated for a length of time. That also works quite nicely. Those are the four most significant suggestions.
Other suggestions include allowing time for the dead germs to settle after they’ve been killed. Also, have spare gasoline filters on hand to filter out any dead bacteria. You’ll have a far higher chance of solving the problem the first time if you follow these easy guidelines.
What removes algae from diesel fuel?
A biocide for diesel fuel. This dual-phased biocide kills germs in fuel, including bacteria and fungi, and is effective in both diesel fuel and water. To get rid of microbial contamination in your fuel system, use this product.
What causes diesel fuel algae?
In the last 7-8 years, the number of occurrences of petroleum storage tanks contaminated with “algae” has increased dramatically across the country. We put that in quotes because we know it’s not truly “algae,” but rather mold, fungus, and bacteria that are responsible for the fuel. We call it algae because that’s what people assume it is (it’s not, because algae is a small plant creature that requires light to thrive, and gasoline tanks are too dark to provide that light), but we go with it. Whatever you call it, whether it’s algae, bacteria, or fungus, the problems remain the same.
Problems? That is the topic of discussion today. How to tell if you have an algae issue in your gasoline tank.
There’s a mountain of research and data that explains what causes diesel fuel algae to contaminate a tank. Due to the lack of sulfur in the gasoline (which prevents it from growing), any free water in the tank becomes a breeding ground for this fuel “algae.” But how do you determine if you have an issue with diesel fuel algae? Take a look at these red flags that could indicate a problem.
1. You insert the petrol tank in the ground and look for any substantial depth of water. Microbes and diesel fuel algae can grow and thrive in as little as a quarter-inch layer of water at the bottom of the container. Remember that a quarter inch can represent tens of gallons of water in a storage tank, depending on the size of the tank.
2. You go through filters more quickly than usual. Because the microbial bodies as well as the black, slimy biomass matrix that they make throughout the course of their lifespan get captured, diesel fuel algae clogs filters like crazy (s). Filters are also clogged when microbial activity causes the gasoline to lose its storage quality and degrade at a faster rate. The asphaltenes and heavy end fuel components that have stratified and come out of solution then cause filter blocking. Any unusually high incidence of filter plugging is a sign that the tank needs to be checked for microorganisms.
3. You perform a microorganism test, which results in a positive result. Microbe test culture strips can be purchased for around $10 apiece. The test takes 3-4 days to create and will provide you with a qualitative (yes/no) rather than quantitative (yes and how much) response to your question.
4. The pH of your gasoline is lower than it should be. Algae in diesel fuel create acids, which gradually shift the pH of the fuel towards an acidic state. Because a pH of 7.0 is neutral, adding acid to the fuel will lower the pH. A fuel pH of less than 5.8 indicates a major problem in the tank and is strong evidence of a microbial problem. Of course, you’ll need a pH meter to figure this out, but if you have one, it’s another piece of data you may gather to see if you have a diesel fuel algae problem.
After you’ve confirmed that, you can move on to the next step in resolving the issue.
How do you clean dirty diesel fuel?
Fill the tank with a few gallons of water and a scouring medium, such as shards of safety glass or clean gravel. Add a liquid soap with petroleum-cutting characteristics, such as Dawn, Ajax, or Palmolive, and rapidly swish it around in the tank.
Can algae grow in a diesel tank?
Algae cannot thrive inside a diesel fuel tank, according to science. Algae cannot grow in the darkness of a diesel fuel tank because it requires sunlight to grow. Microbes such as mold, bacteria, and fungus, on the other hand, can find their way into your diesel fuel tank and cause havoc if you’re not careful. It is critical that you avoid allowing these bacteria to cause damage to your fuel and fuel tank at all costs.
When a large amount of free water is able to work its way into your diesel fuel tank, microbes can set up shop. To thrive, the microorganisms require both food and water, and the diesel fuel and water provide them with everything they require to expand their colonies. Microbe colonies can render your diesel fuel useless in a short amount of time, forcing you to pay for costly repairs.
While you can’t always observe microbial development in a diesel fuel tank, there are some pretty straightforward techniques to tell if you have “algae” growing in your tank. You can keep track of how often your fuel filters need to be replaced by keeping an eye on them. When bacteria are present in your fuel, your fuel filters may clog up more quickly than usual. You can also do frequent testing on your diesel fuel tank to detect if it contains bacteria. These tests will tell you if you need to be concerned about a microorganism problem.
If you discover that algal sludge has formed in your diesel fuel tank, the first thing you should do is drain the water and thoroughly clean the tank. Algae sludge must be broken up and removed from your tank. Initially, do not purchase a biocide; it will not address the problem until the water has been removed and the biomass has been dissolved.
Don’t use too many additives. Too much of anything is bad and will only lead to additional issues.
What is the life expectancy of diesel fuel?
In temperatures of 85 degrees, diesel fuel can last for 6 to 12 months. The fuel will then start to react with the oxygen in the tank. Diesel may become sticky as a result of this interaction. If diesel turns sticky, it can block fuel filters, causing engine problems. The sticky fuel will not burn properly, resulting in a film of soot and carbon on the engine’s inside. One possibility is to apply oxidation-resisting stability treatments.
Degradation of diesel fuel can also be caused by other sources. Fungus can grow in the presence of water in the fuel. Fungi can produce organic chemicals that break down diesel molecules. The gumming process can be accelerated by high temperatures. When metals like zinc and copper come into contact with diesel fuel, they can trigger a chemical reaction. Certain chemicals have been shown to hasten the aging process.
How do you prevent bacterial growth in diesel fuel?
The best strategy to avoid microbial growth in diesel fuel is to reduce its exposure to water. This can be accomplished through a variety of methods, including the recycling of fuel through water separations and the routine discharge of water bottoms where bacteria thrive. It’s also possible to employ gasoline tank insulation, which is a method of regulating fuel temperature.
If sludge has already formed, it should be removed as soon as possible and on a regular basis to prevent it from spreading. It’s also a good idea to schedule frequent tank inspections, cleaning, and treatments. When it comes to treatment, the EPA recommends using prophylactic doses of diesel fuel biocides. These compounds have the ability to extend the period between tank cleanings.
What does water in diesel fuel do?
Standing water at the bottom of a fuel tank creates an ideal home for soil bacteria, which enter through tank holes and during dispensing. Fuel and water combine to create an ideal setting for bacteria to feed on diesel fuel in a damp atmosphere. These bacteria create a slime film that frequently breaks loose, clogging gasoline filters and dispersing bacteria throughout the fuel system. As a waste product, living bacteria produce acids, which further corrode and damage fuel system components.
Q: Does injector cleaner work on diesel engines?
Yes, injector cleaner can be used on diesel engines if the system is appropriate. Make certain it says you may use the formula with diesel. If you use biodiesel, make sure it addresses ethanol concerns. Many cleansers may be used on all sorts of engines, but choosing the wrong one can result in issues.
Q: How often should you use diesel injector cleaner?
If your car is getting up there in mileage, aim to use a fuel injector every 1,500 miles. You can stretch it to 3,000 miles if you have a newer vehicle. Fuel injector build-up is unavoidable, so don’t push it any further. The sooner you deal with it, the better.
Q: Can you use too much diesel injector cleaner?
While most gasoline injector cleaners claim that adding too much won’t hurt you, proceed with caution. The required concentration is stated on all of the containers. Look at the amount of fuel it’s supposed to treat and follow the directions. This manner, the detergent build-up won’t create damage, negating all the job the cleaner could have done otherwise.
Q: How long does it take for an injector cleaner to work?
It’s a frequent misunderstanding that the outcomes are instantaneous. The cleaner removes water within a few minutes of driving, however it takes longer to remove the deposits. The cleaner will take full action after a week of regular driving. Keep track of when you use it and how it affects your gas mileage at the start and after a week. The treatment was successful if you detect a difference.
Q: What are the signs of a clogged fuel injector?
An engine that won’t start or is difficult to start, a lower MPG (indicating lower fuel economy), increased hydrocarbon emissions, and non-firing cylinders are just a few of the warning indicators. Also, if you open the hood of your vehicle and see traces of diesel on the spark plugs, you have a clogged fuel injector.
Q: How does a diesel injector cleaner work?
Most cleaner fluids work by mixing with diesel in the fuel tank, then sending it down the fuel rail, injectors, and into the combustion chambers via the fuel pump. The cleaner breaks down solid particles into soluble bits and cleans any traces of rust in the tank throughout the operation. The remaining cleaner liquid is blown out the exhaust system of the car.
Q: How often should I clean my diesel injector?
Before you start having problems with the engine or injectors, you should first clean your fuel injector. Deep cleaning of the diesel injector should be done at least once a year or every 30,000 kilometers. However, the age of your car, your driving circumstances, and the type of fuel you use all have a role. The suggested clean-up interval for your fuel injector may be found in your vehicle’s owner’s manual.
Q: Should I use fuel additives to boost the cleaner?
After using the injector cleaning, fuel injector additives can be utilized to improve the performance of the fuel injector. The additives are placed into the fuel tank to extend the life of the gasoline, prevent build-up or corrosion, and lubricate the injectors. As a result, you should clean the deposits with a gasoline cleaner and then apply fuel additives to assist keep the fuel system cleaner for longer.