View Full Version : Fuel additive

11-30-2006, 05:08 PM
I was in Walmart today looking at 0w40 Mobil 1 and decided to peruse the chemical section. I was looking at purchasing some Sta-bil for my motorbike and happened across this...


If I remember correctly, it claims that it cleans fuel injectors and also prevents gelling. Seems like a great idea, but decided to ask this question to the board before I plop down $5 for a bottle.

So what do you folks use in the frozen north to prevent diesel gelling?

I'm a diesel newbie, so be nice to me. :smilewink: Temperatures have been hovering around the 30's lately and I'm headed to 20 degree country this weekend. Brrrr...cold!


11-30-2006, 05:54 PM
In the northern states, they start selling #1 diesel that won't gell until it gets way below zero. 1 thing I do is put some type of antifreeze in the tank. You can buy fuel anti-freeze, but it's just rubbing alcohol. It absorbs water in the tank and burns it. It will also clean injectors and lower the gelling point.

11-30-2006, 07:09 PM
DC doesn't recommend additives. However, DC does suggest kerosene for cold climates if No. 2 diesel is used.

My 2002 Sprinter manual says in summary:

If using No. 1 diesel - not recommended
If using No. 2 diesel - then

if ambient air temperture is 14 degrees F or below
70% No. 2 diesel
30% Kerosene

if the ambient air temperture is 4 degrees F or below
50% No 2 diesel
50% Kerosene

The manual further recommends putting in the kerosene first, followed
by the diesel, to aid mixxing.

Also note the conditions that you might experience gelling. If you are running, that is not a likely scenerio. The fuel return line from the CDI returns fuel that is hot not just from the engine heat, but also compression from the high pressure pump. That fuel return first goes to the fuel filter. At that point, it enters a bi-metal temperture valve that directs warmed fuel into the fuel filter to keep it at least 80 degrees F. The rest goes back to the fuel tank. Before entering the fuel tank, the fuel goes through a cooling coil (visible if you crawl under the van and look behind the fuel tank). While I suppose you can reduce the coil-induced heat loss somehow during the winter, I suspect that there is still sufficient temperture differential that the returning fuel helps keep the fuel in the tank warm.

So the real issue with gelling is when stopped long enough for the fuel in the lines and filter to reach ambiant air temperture. As the Sprinter's diesel system is no more or less unique than any other diesel system in the cold geographic area, I would presume that as long as you purchased fuel from a station that sells enough diesel to cycle its inventory to the winter blend or No. 1, you should be fine without additives or even kerosene (though kerosene mix might be useful to reduce fuel costs in those regions where it is cheaper than diesel).

11-30-2006, 07:25 PM
Thanks HKPierce. Good info! :thumbup:


Altered Sprinter
12-01-2006, 09:43 AM
This is a good read, however some Sprinters don't have the heater blocks installed if bought out-side or secondhand from the Winter zones
any high quality addative will help to assist in keeping fuels at a liquid flowing state even below zero.
a few links of Interest
Red-line is one of the best addatives in the world it's an Americian product but specifically desinged for engines especially Diesel and high performance engines, built after 2003 it does not use a higher cetane or higher sulphur content as the addative is meant for Both ULD and ULSD
thinking of this point Kero in principle works, it's an old trick that goes so far back even I can't think of when it was used for this purpose as it is a great cleaning agent, but one needs to beaware it will melt seals as it is a high reactive cleaner using over twenty different chemicails it is also the residue left over from fuels purifaction process as a mix with diesel and kerosene which includes water and waste oil products, they are known to destroy an engine if too much is added
hk the 2002 Sprinter is the one with the older seals and softer metal compounds It's odd DC does not recommend an addative as they do in Canada, and Mercedes Manual do recommend it, in fact they usually put it in at the service intervails, and also sell it in small bottles 125mil for about US$9.00 bucks they charge to put it in too. you are correct to state different geo-area's as the spec's vary from one place to the other.
L2_7_1_rf (http://www.chevron.com/products/prodserv/fuels/bulletin/diesel/L2_7_1_rf.htm)
ATG Diesel-Therm - Fuel Preheater (http://www.diesel-therm.com/diesel-therm.htm)
Red Line Oils Australia - Redline Motor & Gear Oil, Race Oils, Auto Transmission Fluid, Hydraulic Oils, WaterWetter, Fuel Additives, 2 & 4 Stroke Oils, Suspension Fluids, Fleet Products, Diesel Additives (http://www.redlineoil.com.au/product-information.asp#fueladditives)

12-01-2006, 05:12 PM
hk the 2002 Sprinter is the one with the older seals and softer metal compounds

Anyone out there with a newer US Sprinter and its manual to check on this?

Altered Sprinter
12-01-2006, 10:36 PM
HK, made a error in my statement in part Mercedes does this in the U.S and Canada for N/American vehicles and it's a standard precedure for Mercedes-Benz Sprinters down under, DC has a different manual ..bearing in mind the Dodge is a Mercedes! one would think DCX followed the same specifactions
Appolagies for my mistake.
PS The Big boys from Germany are here in my town today as I have an invite to the showing of the New Sprinters, they are in short supply so they have both of mine on display, a bit silly because they are both direct exports from Europe , the acc/ line up of options are not available down here, I will ask them about thier thoughts towards DCX as there are grumbles brewing.
Again sorry for the above mixup.

12-01-2006, 11:16 PM
If I know it is going to be in the teens I put 3-5 gal. of kerosene then fill the tank. I would add more kero. for lower temps. I had a ford powerstroke gell up on me while driving.