Before filling your tank with biodiesel
, vegetable oil, or any other biofuel
, it is essential to find out whether your car is compatible. Mistakes can be very expensive to rectify - at best your car won't run, at worst you could destroy your engine!The first thing to consider is the fuel your car currently uses.you car runs on petrol then you do not need to read any further. biodiesel is not a suitable fuel for spark ignition engines and considerable damage is likely to occur if you attempt to run your car on biodiesel.
The green alternative to petrol is Ethanol usually mixed with standard fossil fuel petroleum.Biodiesel Vegetable Oil
The term biodiesel
if often used with reference to true biodiesel
, straight vegetable oil SVO
(unused rape seed or corn oil usually), and waste vegetable oil WVO
(used vegetable oil from restaurants etc).
Diesel Engines (compression ignition engines) can nearly all be run on biodiesel
without modification. If you plan to use straight vegetable oil, some modification is usually necessary (Mercedes and Volvo vehicles aside), and if you plan to use waste vegetable oil modification is always necessary and you will need to process your fuel before use.BiodieselBiodiesel
is a stronger solvent than standard mineral diesel and so all the accumulated gunge in the tank and pipes from years of driving dissolves into the new fuel. When the biodiesel
is pumped through to the fuel filter these particles are deposited potentially blocking the filter. Shortly after starting to use biodiesel
it is usually necessary to replace the fuel filter at least once. After that the pipes and tank are clean and fuel filters will only need replacing at standard service intervals and you will have a much cleaner car.Biodiesel's
solvent powers also make it hard on any old style rubber piping. All rubber piping and other rubber parts in contact with fuel should be immediately replaced with modern hard-wearing long life nylon pipes to prevent problems. Most modern cars no longer have true rubber parts and so this may not be an issue.Straight Vegetable Oil
Vegetable oil is more viscous than mineral diesel - i.e. it is thicker. Particularly on cold days and when the engine is cold you would have difficulties starting a car on vegetable oil. However, once the engine (or fuel) is warm everything should run as it would (or better than it did) on diesel. Therefore there are a few options to consider:
Dual Fuel System
Start the car with diesel/biodiesel
and then switching to SVO
when everything is warmed up. Before turning off the engine you need to switch back to diesel so that the injectors and fuel lines contain diesel. This means the engine will start next time you use the car, and it will prevent fuel freezing in the fuel lines during cold weather conditions.
oil can be mixed with diesel in the main tank at different ratios depending on the weather conditions. The warmer the weather, the higher the percentage of vegetable oil that can be used.
Fit a fuel preheater
in the tank, a heat exchanger to warm fuel, and/or a heated fuel filter.A typical straight vegetable oil conversion will have a fuel preheater
which warms up the SVO
sufficiently to get the engine started, and then a heat exchanger which uses the heat from the water in the radiator to warm the SVO
fuel while the engine is running.Waste Vegetable Oil
Waste vegetable oil is the cheapest fuel to use, but requires the most work on the part of the car owner. If you car runs on straight vegetable oil, then it should run without problem on waste vegetable oil - as long as the oil is correctly processed before use.Maintenance
An engine will usually run more smoothly on vegetable oil, and be better lubricated than with mineral diesel therefore lasting much longer. However, it is essential that you continue to maintain your engine properly and always keep a spare fuel filter handy in case you suffer from a blockage. In very cold weather you should add some mineral diesel to your fuel to prevent problems with freezing.Indian Cars that can use Biodiesel
All Indian manufacturers have no clear standing on biodiesel
. Most dealerships are unclear about what will happen to ones warranty,when biodiesel
is used. This is set to change once Biodiesel
becomes more mainstream.
But from the details collected we have come to these conclusions:Tata
, has the most number of passenger cars running in India. The majority of their fuel handling material is different alloys(metal) and the very little piping that is used (the dealerships claims that) is claimed to be made from different plastics.Maruti
claims that their majority piping material is metal alloys and the non metal piping is usually made from different plastics.
Hyundai too claims to be having plastic and metal piping
Ford on the other hand said they where not sure what material they use and believed it to be of some resin source. Thus do extra research before thinking of using Bio diesel in you Ford vehicle.
Benz said their stand on Bio diesel will be released soon to the media
What ever be the case if required changing these pipe to Biodiesel
compatible once will be a procedure
that will cost less than 2000Rs including labourThe information provided above is only trivial and consult your mechanic before using Bio diesel in your vehicle.interesting links and news items on Bio Diesel on the right side