The transition from fall’s beautiful weather to the biting cold of winter isn’t just about the change in nature. For those in the transportation sector, it’s a reminder to prepare for the harshness of the coming months. Ensuring your diesel fuel is conditioned to withstand the winter is paramount. Here’s a detailed guide to help you navigate the process.
Conduct a Detailed Tank Inspection
- Sampling: Start by taking a meticulous sample from your diesel tank using an advanced bottom sampling kit. This isn’t just about checking fuel levels but understanding its quality.
- Lab Testing: Once you have your sample, dispatch it to a reputable laboratory to detect microbial activity or the presence of water. Microbial growth in diesel can be a silent culprit, thriving in the shadows, especially where there’s moisture. These can spell disaster when temperatures drop.
- Interpreting Results: If the lab identifies microbial growth or excessive moisture, it’s an indicator that your diesel requires treatment, be it a biocide or water dispersant.
Emphasize Filter Upgrades
- Vehicle Filters: Equip your vehicles with filters of 20 microns or higher, ensuring they primarily sieve out particulates. Old or ineffective filters can be detrimental during winter.
- Dispenser Filters: The fuel dispenser’s filter should be bolstered to at least 30 microns. Many gelling issues in diesel arise from clogged filters laden with old debris. Regular
checks and replacements can prevent such challenges.
Regular Nozzle Sampling Throughout Winter
- Understanding Cloud Point (CP): The CP of diesel indicates the temperature at which wax starts to crystallize. This is influenced by the origin of the crude and the type of biofuel mixed into the diesel.
- Routine Testing: Since some regional diesel variants might not align well with winter requirements, consistent sampling and testing for CP is crucial. Refineries might occasionally alter their crude sources or biofuel mixtures, so it’s vital to remain informed.
Refine and Adjust Treatment Protocols
- Recognizing the Fuel’s Winter Properties: Typically, untreated fuel in the US will begin to reach its cloud point around 15°F. However, many regions require their diesel to function seamlessly at even lower temperatures.
- Blending Options: The No1 diesel blend (e.g., a composition of 70% No2 and 30% No1) can enhance winter operability. However, while beneficial, No1 diesel can be more expensive and sometimes scarce in specific markets. Also, relying heavily on No1 can impact engine performance.
- Fuel Additives: Alternatively, winter fuel treatments can be a cost-effective solution. Either alone or in combination with No1, additives are proven to be effective winter solutions in the country’s coldest regions and are trusted by many national fleets.
Prepare for Unexpected Weather Extremities
- Anticipating the Polar Vortex: In recent times, the term “Polar Vortex” has come to signify intense cold spells. Such conditions can challenge your target temperature goals, especially if refueling from varied retail outlets.
- Emergency Kits: To counter unforeseen challenges, having an emergency treatment kit, complete with additives and treatments, is a smart move. This ensures you’re never caught off-guard.
Don’t Hesitate to Consult Experts
- Guidance and Assistance: Winter fuel preparation can be intricate. If you ever find the process daunting or are unsure of a step, reach out to professionals. We, at Info@Diversified.Energy, are here to assist. Our expertise lies in devising tailored fuel treatments, ensuring your diesel is winter-proof. With our guidance, you can strike a balance between cost-efficiency and optimal fuel performance.
By following this in-depth guide, you can confidently ensure that your diesel tanks are robustly prepared for the winter months, reducing the risk of operational disruptions and maintaining smooth business operations.
Have questions about getting your tanks winter-ready? Reach out to our team today!