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Fuels & Lubricants Discussion all about Fuels & Lubricants. synthetic oil, conventional oil, brands, change intervals, diesel grades, gelling and such debated items like that. Non TDI related postings will be moved or removed. This forum is NOT for the discussion of biodiesel and other alternative fuels.

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Old December 27th, 2001, 15:00   #1
NB TDI
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Default What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

HI everyone
I don't know what diesel to use here in FL?
I just got my NB TDI about 2 weeks ago and my first fill up I filled up at Texaco just because it said "premium" diesel. That was the best diesel that I could find( here also is a CITCO station wiht premium diesel). And them there is SHELL, and CHEVRON, there is also a HESS ( but they don't say premium)I don't know if the is really a differece in diesel and "premium diesel". I heard that TEXACO AND CITCO diesel is crap? So what diesel should I use? I been looking at the pumps to see a cetane rating but there isn't one?
Any one else live in FL. what diesel is best and what do you use?
help me out!
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Old December 27th, 2001, 15:25   #2
deezuhl
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

Congrats on the new car. I don't own a TDI but I do own an 87 mercedes 300D turbo. I live in the Gainesville area and have been using Texaco and Citgo diesel. Best thing to do is to find a station that sells a lot of diesel that way you'll have the freshest available. I tried Shell once didn't notice any difference in performance
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Old December 27th, 2001, 15:29   #3
Turbo Steve
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

Amoco Premier or Hess 45 at a last resort.

Keep in mind that in most cases, the only thing that is premium about a label with "Premium" on it is the price.

Amoco Premier, which averages over a 50 cetane rating, is the best available diesel fuel in your area because it starts out with a high cetane value to begin with and includes a generous additive package that no other manufacture can duplicate. Other less-refined fuels start out with a very low cetane rating and then hope that additives will overcome the liabilities of their weaker product.

Amoco also takes plenty of measures to ensure their Premier brand is not contaminated by other petroleum distillates passed off as diesel. Hence, Premier is transformed via a special pipeline built exclusively for preservation.
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Old December 27th, 2001, 15:58   #4
Turbo Steve
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

Moreover:

Your new TDI engine's computer contains around 30,000 pages of coded info to help manage the operation of the little 1.9L engine that could - and would - if it used diesel fuel with a cetane rating of 49. VW and/or Bosch programmers used the cetane rating of "49" to calculate with, when they factored into the equation "injection timing lag" for the highly efficient and technologically advanced A-4 TDI engines.

Basically, our high-performance TDI engine needs high-performance fuel with a cetane value of 49 to run at peak efficiency.

While your engine will still run on 40 cetane fuel or even contaminated 20 year old tractor fuel that some swamp dwellers still say their engine runs better on, low-quality home heating oil, keep in mind that using lower-quality diesel than the ORIGINALLY INTENDED 49 will make your engine run less efficiently than what was originally calculated by our TDI's Founding Fathers, who anticipated the availability of high-quality fuels like that found in Europe, since the TDI was designed for operation over there and not originally designed with poor quality U.S. fuel in mind!

Lesser quality fuel of any kind (i.e. cetane ratings below 49) will cause noisier idling, increase the visual presence of smoke, and usually results in poorer fuel economy.

In short, ignition timing lag is the reason why VW recommends that optimum fuel used in their high performance TDI be at 49. A higher rated fuel is not necessary and a lower rating can make your engine run less efficient and possibly add more unnecessary stress to it.

[ December 27, 2001: Message edited by: Turbo Steve ]</p>
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Old December 27th, 2001, 15:58   #5
MaryP
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

Hi NB TDI, Look at my post from December 18, "How do you recognize quality fuel". Has some great answers there. Congrats on your new purchase! I hope to join you soon! Mary
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Old December 27th, 2001, 16:00   #6
Turbo Steve
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

When compared to the rest of the world, all diesel fuel in America is "lacking," including even Amoco - which at least (in the U.S. with BP's blessing), is striving to upgrade to European-like quality with their Premier and PowerBlend formulas.

Amoco appears to be ahead of the game in comparison to other companies and frankly speaking, some of the stuff passed-off as "diesel" in North America isn't fit for any engine and certainly not suited for feeding the bears! [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img]



The only solution we have in the U.S. is to find the highest quality fuel available in our area (i.e. Amoco Premier in the South or PowerBlend in the Northeast) and use additives with a cetane booster because our high-performance TDI engine needs high-performance fuel with a cetane value of 49 to run at peak efficiency.
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Old December 27th, 2001, 16:39   #7
SoTxBill
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

america does not have alcohol powered cars like they do in bazil...

but your not in brazil...

high volume stations and find the one that gives you the best mpg and performance... but you may not see much difference in florida...

your not in mexico...
daaa

your not in germany....

daaaa

your not in france...

daaa..

your not in the uk...

and luckly you bought a great car that will perform wonderful on american diesel...

sorry... can help the sorcastic replies from some of the previous post...

enjoy you new car and the great world of diesel...

and dont listen to the doom and gloom bunch...
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Old December 27th, 2001, 17:08   #8
Turbo Steve
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by TexasBill:
Don't listen to the doom and gloom bunch...<hr></blockquote>

Uh Bill:

What does the positive sentence of "find the highest quality fuel available in our area" have to do with the "doom and gloom" of pessimism? [img]images/icons/confused.gif[/img]

Aren't the Veterans supposed to welcome new members into the fold by encouraging comments like, quality counts in today's society which is filled with too much apathy? [img]images/icons/shocked.gif[/img]
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Old December 28th, 2001, 04:07   #9
nuke
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

TurboSteve wrote:
<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr> When compared to the rest of the world, all diesel fuel in America is "lacking," including even Amoco <hr></blockquote>

Uhh, what about CARB diesel? Ain't it in America? Sure, I'm talking about Kalifornia, but the Red Army of the People's Republic of Berkeley hasn't yet managed a secession.
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Old December 28th, 2001, 05:36   #10
SoTxBill
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

quote....
While your engine will still run on 40 cetane fuel or even contaminated 20 year old tractor fuel that some swamp dwellers still say their engine runs better on, low-quality home heating oil, keep in mind that using lower-quality diesel than the ORIGINALLY INTENDED 49 will make your engine run less efficiently than what was originally calculated by our TDI's Founding Fathers, who anticipated the availability of high-quality fuels like that found in Europe, since the TDI was designed for operation over there and not originally designed with poor quality U.S. fuel in mind!

Lesser quality fuel of any kind (i.e. cetane ratings below 49) will cause noisier idling, increase the visual presence of smoke, and usually results in poorer fuel economy.

In short, ignition timing lag is the reason why VW recommends that optimum fuel used in their high performance TDI be at 49. A higher rated fuel is not necessary and a lower rating can make your engine run less efficient and possibly add more unnecessary stress to it.
end quote..

actually your engine will run quite well on existing american diesel... you cannot and will not see any mpg or hp changes...

your engine will start fine, and run well on existing fuels..

no additives or brands of fuels have yet to document better mpg or hp...

do not run old tractor fuel??
which one??
diesel,gasolene,propane,butane,alcohol,wood distillant??????
do not run water...
do not run gasolene..
do not run kerosene..
do not run alcohol..
do not run cough syrup..
do not run barbeque sauce...
do not run ketchup...

all the above have unsatisfactory cetane values and are not recommended for your diesel...

however 99.9% of vw drivers have exceptional results with american diesel fuels... take their advice,, not the ones who are having trouble..

enjoy your wonderful purchase and driving experience with a car that you wear, instead of drive.. expect great miledge, performance and endurance... BE SURE to change the timing belt when called for.. otherwise welcome to the club..
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Old December 29th, 2001, 14:52   #11
SkyPup
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

"If you expect the absolute very worst in diesel fuel quality, price, and availability, you probably will not be disappointed!," exclaimed Sun Petroleum Products Technical Service Engineer Ed Boone. As light Arabian crude becomes progressively more difficult to obtain, especially in light of the ban on Iraqi & Iranian oil, imports of North Slope crude (crud) are flowing to fill the void. Today's petroleum market also contains poor quality crude extracted from previously capped domestic wells. Heavy crude oils yield up to 15% less product per barrel in the distillation range of diesel fuel than the more desirable light crude stocks, according to the Society of Automotive Engineers publications. To make matters worse, jet fuel users are now leaning toward high yield kerosene-type products, resulting in increased competition between diesel and aircraft operators for the same portion of each barrel of crude, according to Mobil's senior staff engineer Bob McCoy.

Fuel quality declines

Faced with a dwindling supply of high quality crude oil, refiners find themselves in a serious bind.

A high ranking executive with a major refiner says the quality of crude stock delivered to a given refinery can vary greatly from week to week. As a result, many refiners must either take extra time with poor quality crude or allow productivity to remain at 100% by easing up on fuel quality specifications. Most refiners now opt for the latter choice, industry sources say.

"Diesel fuel definitely is going to hell within the next six months or so." That is the opinion of United Parcel Service's federal agency relations manager Jack Allen.

Ken Van Liew, automotive service manager, Cummins Engine Company, says quasi-No.2-D diesel fuel with up to twice ASTM's maximum allowable sulfur content shows up in some areas of the country all the time.

Van Liew's concern is echoed by Bill Dysart of Union '76 Oil Company, who said coast-to-coast surveys conducted by the SAE have revealed "an extreme range of diesel fuel quality in this country today."

Unfortunately, there's little, if any, detectable change in engine power, performance or startability to tip off the unsuspecting diesel owner. "All of a sudden, the engine's 'worn out' and stops dead," Cummins officials say.

Cummins engineers suggest checking oil operating temperatures. Low oil temperatures of 160F or less promote condensation of water which both depletes oil additives and increases sulfuric acid formation. If high humidity is characteristic of a operating area, that can make matters worse.

Symptoms of high sulfur diesel fuel combustion include a marked increase in oil consumption, crankcase blow-by with visible vapor and blue exhaust smoke. Oil analysis can be expected to show a severe decrease in alkalinity and increased concentrations of iron, chromium and sulfur products, diesel technicians report.

The effect of sulfuric acid, which accumulates in engine lubricating oil, where it quickly depletes anti-corrosion additives and proceeds to attack cylinder liners, piston rings, bearings, exhaust valve guides and other parts. High humidity makes the process even more rapid.

Determining the quality of a batch of diesel fuel can be complicated. Information from oil companies is assumed to be accurate, when often it is not. But fuel distributors, who often receive their product from a variety of suppliers, simply don't know how bad their fuel is day to day.

Sun's Ed Boone thinks "pushing suppliers for nothing but fuel in compliance with ASTM No.2-D in the future is probably fruitless and self-defeating".
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Old December 29th, 2001, 15:54   #12
nuke
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

Congrats on the new TDI.

Since the quality and source of fuel varies depending on where you live, the reports of any one brand being good or bad won't apply unless it comes from someone in your area.

About all you can do is try a tank of each, record your mileage and your subjective impressions about how each tank runs.

I'd gravitiate toward premium diesel, but it isn't like premium gasoline (ie, high octane). Premium diesel may have higher cetane, but not necessarily. There's a list of 5 possible improved characteristics, any 2 of which qualifies the fuel as premium diesel. It might just have injector detergtents and improved low temperature flow for example. Nice to have but not a big thriller.

The most obvious effect of cetane number is cold start performance. In Florida, this is probably not going to be real easy to ascertain, just listen to how your engine sounds on the first few minutes after a cold start in the morning. The smoother it sounds, the more likely the fuel has a higher cetane number.

Keep an eye on smoke output, you might find some better than others in this regard.

As before, keep a record of your mileage and what fuel provides the best mpg. High mpg might be the result of high heating value, which tends to indicate a quality fuel.

It probably is reasonable to look for a station that sells a lot of diesel, so that their stock is less subject to storage contamination.

You can ask the station operator where they get their fuel and perhaps contact the refiner for a data sheet. Most likely, they'll say it meets all minimum ASTM specs, unless you get lucky.

There's a fuel FAQ here in the FAQ section and Chevron has a very complete paper online covering the subject of diesel fuel in great detail. It is worth reading if you curious about such thing.

As much hoohah as there is about cetane in the forum, it's just not that big of deal. It would be nice to get high cetane in every tank, you'll get a bit smoother cold starts and a bit less noise and a bit less smoke. Emissions performance is probably better too, but you can't tell without equipment to measure it. If you have low cetane fuel, then a dose of diesel fuel booster will make a marked improvement, if the improvement is negligable then it is likely the fuel has an acceptable cetane already. Redline, Power Service, Amsoil, Stanadyne all make good diesel fuel additives. Be sure to read the label and figure out how much to add, it doesn't do any good to overdose the fuel. Powerservice is available at Walmart and many people seem to like it.

Just use your best judgement and see what works best where you live.

<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by NB TDI:
HI everyone
I don't know what diesel to use here in FL?
I don't know if the is really a differece in diesel and "premium diesel".
So what diesel should I use?
help me out!
<hr></blockquote>
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Old December 29th, 2001, 21:56   #13
[the unit]
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

Welcome to the forum and congrats on the new TDI! I'm in the Orlando area and usually use Hess if I can. The local Hess carries 42 cetane (blah), but it's better than 40. You should consider dosing it with some DieselKleen, available at your local Walmart. That'll raise the cetane number a bit as well as lubricity. When I'm in the area, I also fill up at a Hess in Clearwater that carries 45 cetane fuel. If you are in the Gainesville area there is a secret Amoco Premier pump Skypup seems to be hoarding to himself up there. [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img] (lucky guy) Hope I was of some help. Happy travels in your new TDI!

-Rob
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Old January 2nd, 2002, 08:55   #14
NB TDI
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

what about just Amoco ( not amoco premeir) is that good too&gt; I saw one the other day that I can get to ??
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Old January 2nd, 2002, 09:50   #15
[the unit]
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Default Re: What diesel to use FL? cetane levels?

Plain ol' Amoco #2 is no better/worse than any other standard fuel. It will almost always be 40 cetane. I've run it before and it's a touch louder and noticeably smokier in my Jetta. I'm still trying to find the best stuff around here. That's what you'll likely end up doing as well. Just experiment a bit and try each of your local stations to see which performs best. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]

-Rob
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