Biodiesel

msmolow

2019 Unity CB / 2018 Chas
I read in various posts here and on FB that B20 voids the warranty. That is an internet myth. MB lists precautions to undertake with extended B20 use, but it does not void the warranty. See the 2017 Sprinter Operator''s Manual, page 275.
 

avanti

2014 GWV Legend 3500 I4
I read in various posts here and on FB that B20 voids the warranty. That is an internet myth. MB lists precautions to undertake with extended B20 use, but it does not void the warranty. See the 2017 Sprinter Operator''s Manual, page 275.
Thank you for helping me with my favorite hobby horse.

The Internet to the contrary, the fact is that NOTHING "voids your warranty." Some things are not covered under the warranty (and it is possible that actual engine damage provably caused by excessive use of bio-diesel might be one of them). But that would just mean that that particular damage might not be covered. You warranty would remain completely intact, however.

In practice, MB's position on bio-diesel is so wishy-washy, I doubt that they would ever go there. There are also issues of "implied warranty of fitness for purpose" if they sell Sprinters in places where bio-diesel is the only available choice.
 

Mike DZ

2016 View 24V (2015 3500)
My 2012 Ford Diesel F250 had the DPF and no DEF so did the burn periodically. I was told on the instrument panel this was happening. Is there a display on the Sprinter that tells you that's going on?
No display, per se, but you can monitor EGT3 with a scan gauge or similar and see temp rise to around 1300 F vice the 500-700 F that you get with normal highway cruise.
 

PaC

New member
I am new to this forum and a have a 2018 Winnebago ERA B van built on the Sprinter 4x4 and I'm new to diesel ownership. Wouldn't changing the oil more often, say every 10,000 miles instead of 20,000 miles, and include cleaning fuel injectors, cleaning/changing fuel filter avert the potential engine problems associated with running B20 fuel?
 

Mike DZ

2016 View 24V (2015 3500)
I am new to this forum and a have a 2018 Winnebago ERA B van built on the Sprinter 4x4 and I'm new to diesel ownership. Wouldn't changing the oil more often, say every 10,000 miles instead of 20,000 miles, and include cleaning fuel injectors, cleaning/changing fuel filter avert the potential engine problems associated with running B20 fuel?
In short - I agree. Shorter oil change intervals (OCI) are hinted at in MB literature (without a specific mileage) for bio and the other actions you mention are suggested by other sources.

Can't really clean the fuel filter, so make that change.

Different point, but I also think that a 20,000 mileage OCI is nuts - my local MB service writer who writes all of their Sprinter work agrees - but I don't have them change my oil. I sample and send oil away for testing and change my own based on results of testing.
 

avanti

2014 GWV Legend 3500 I4
Different point, but I also think that a 20,000 mileage OCI is nuts - my local MB service writer who writes all of their Sprinter work agrees - but I don't have them change my oil. I sample and send oil away for testing and change my own based on results of testing.
At what mileage do you see actual out-of-spec oil?

We would all love to see actual data.
 

Mike DZ

2016 View 24V (2015 3500)
At what mileage do you see actual out-of-spec oil?

We would all love to see actual data.
7-8000 miles brings my 5w40 oil down to the equivalent of 33 weight. I also look for diesel fuel in oil and other contaminates. I then change oil to be convenient to my planned travel, i.e either before a long trip so I don't start a 4K trip with 33 weight or after a trip where (assuming a linear decay rate) I won't be far below 30 weight.

I understand my heuristic will not be acceptable to all. I don't believe with the variations across all the Sprinter fleet that there is an objective answer. I just use data to help my decision making.

YMMV
 

avanti

2014 GWV Legend 3500 I4
7-8000 miles brings my 5w40 oil down to the equivalent of 33 weight. I also look for diesel fuel in oil and other contaminates. I then change oil to be convenient to my planned travel, i.e either before a long trip so I don't start a 4K trip with 33 weight or after a trip where (assuming a linear decay rate) I won't be far below 30 weight.

I understand my heuristic will not be acceptable to all. I don't believe with the variations across all the Sprinter fleet that there is an objective answer. I just use data to help my decision making.

YMMV
That's fine.

I just thought from your comments that maybe you were actually seeing out-of-spec oil at the MB recommended OCI. To my knowledge, you would have been the first.

I am a big believer in oil analysis, so your post got my attention.
 

woundedpig

2018 Unity MB
That's fine. I just thought from your comments that maybe you were actually seeing out-of-spec oil at the MB recommended OCI. To my knowledge, you would have been the first. .
What "out of spec" parameters would lead to your decision to change the oil before the recommended change interval?
 

avanti

2014 GWV Legend 3500 I4
What "out of spec" parameters would lead to your decision to change the oil before the recommended change interval?
Not being an expert, I would tend to believe the parameter ranges provided by the oil analysis firm. I certainly wouldn't change my oil based on a viscosity value that is still within the range recommended for new oil in the Operator's Manual.
 

autostaretx

Erratic Member
In an oil like 5W-40 , the base oil is viscosity 5.
Then "viscosity enhancers" are added: molecules which change shape as they heat up (to make the oil less fluid... higher viscosity at operating temperatures).

As the oil ages through use, those viscosity enhancers are broken down ... the analysis viscosity rating of "33" can serve as a reasonable estimate of how much of the *other* additives in the oil may be breaking down, too.

--dick
 

avanti

2014 GWV Legend 3500 I4
In an oil like 5W-40 , the base oil is viscosity 5.
Then "viscosity enhancers" are added: molecules which change shape as they heat up (to make the oil less fluid... higher viscosity at operating temperatures).

As the oil ages through use, those viscosity enhancers are broken down ... the analysis viscosity rating of "33" can serve as a reasonable estimate of how much of the *other* additives in the oil may be breaking down, too.

--dick
Makes sense.

The question then becomes how much breaking down is acceptable. Presumably this question is factored into the OEM recommendations. This is the point where so many people start just pulling numbers out of the air, or falling back on "common sense". I hope and believe that the engineers aren't doing the same.
 

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
Not being an expert, I would tend to believe the parameter ranges provided by the oil analysis firm. I certainly wouldn't change my oil based on a viscosity value that is still within the range recommended for new oil in the Operator's Manual.
I've said before, if you're paying for oil testing service I would assume that you use a lab that you trust. The oil testing services should have a significant data base to use for their recommendations. Why wouldn't you listen to them? Not using their recommendations diminishes the value that your money brings.

:2cents: vic
 
There is so much confusion about bio/biomass diesel. I saw this post on the Minnie Winnie’s forum. I think Chevron’s reply should clear up some of this.

‘I have a question regarding the diesel fuel from your Chevron stations. The pump has a green label stating "Ultra Low Sulfur Highway Diesel 15ppm sulfur maximum" The pump also has a black and orange label stating "Biomass-Based Diesel Blend" in quantities between 5 and 20%. My Mercedes dealer states this fuel will void my warranty. Mercedes states; Most fuel stations in the marketplace sport a blend of diesel fuel and biodiesel, the ‘bio’ being derived from a plant base or recycled oil. Mercedes-Benz requires owners to use diesel with less than 5 per cent biodiesel, called B5. The problem is that many outlets throughout the U.S. offer diesel with up to 20 percent biodiesel - B20. This higher level wreaks havoc on the engine, leading to expensive issues not covered by warranties because people have used the wrong fuel. “Continuous use of B20 fuel can lead to fuel filter clogging and injector deposits, and can cause the engine oil level to rise due to unburned fuel washing into the oil pan. A clogged fuel filter as well as injector deposits can cause engine performance degradation while increased engine oil levels due to dilution by unburned fuel can cause engine mechanical damage.” That’s right from a Mercedes pamphlet. So do I avoid all Chevron stations? According to the black and orange label your fuel is not meeting Mercedes Requirements. I am looking forward to Chevron's technical advice.

Reply;

Thank you for the inquiry.

To address your primary concern, we would like to inform you that Chevron diesel fuel may contain up to, but no more than 5% biodiesel.

The wording on the orange label you are referring to “contains biomass-based diesel or biodiesel in quantities between 5 percent and 20 percent” is required by the FTC, and serves to notify the customer that the diesel fuel contains biomass-based diesel (in addition to petroleum-based), but does not necessarily mean it is a biodiesel product.

Biomass-based diesel, also known as renewable diesel, is a hydrocarbon diesel vehicle fuel produced from non-petroleum renewable resources. Renewable diesel is virtually indistinguishable from conventional (petroleum-based) diesel fuel in its chemical composition and performance. Accordingly, renewable diesel is considered a “drop-in” fuel, which means it can be used in blends with conventional diesel fuel, and its presence will be transparent to vehicles or equipment. Chevron diesel fuel with renewable diesel component meets ASTM D975 requirements (basic requirements all diesel fuel must meet).

Biomass-based diesel does not necessarily mean biodiesel, although it is also bio-derived. Biodiesel is produced from similar renewable feedstocks, but its chemical composition is distinctly different, and it is produced using entirely different chemical processes than those used in making renewable diesel.

All diesel fuel sold in the United States is allowed to contain up to 5% volume biodiesel, and still comply with ASTM D975. Any fuel with greater than 5% biodiesel content will have unique labelling with the letter B followed by the volume % biodiesel, and will be blue colored, rather than orange colored label you referenced (please see the images below, with red circle identifying the label you observed).

To answer your question: all Chevron branded diesel fuel meets or exceeds ASTM D975 requirements, which address the requirements for all diesel engines; there is no need to avoid any Chevron branded diesel fuel because it may contain up to, but no more than 5% biodiesel.

We understand this regulatory required labelling and terminology are confusing to the consumer, so we encourage you to please contact us by phone or email if you have any additional questions.


Regards,

Chevron Fuels Technical Service
fueltek@...
tel: +1 510 242 5357 option#3
office hours: Mon-Fri 9-11am; 1-3pm (Pacific)
 

avanti

2014 GWV Legend 3500 I4
OMG!
When I read the information cited in Moonypaul's post, it seemed at odds with my understanding. Moreover, it seemed too absurd to be correct. There couldn't possibly be THREE different kinds of labels (green, blue, orange) indicating three distinct dimensions of fuel (sulfer content, biodiesel, and biomass). I had never even heard of the distinction between "biodiesel" and "biomass-based-diesel". Surely, no sane bureoucracy would expose consumers to such.

So, I poked around a bit, and discovered that the above post is absolutely accurate!

http://www.mda.state.mn.us/renewable/biodiesel/~/media/Files/renewable/biodiesel/biodlabel201405.pdf

https://www.ftc.gov/sites/default/f...-cfr-part-306/080311automotivefuelratings.pdf





Of course, there is also the BLACK label, meaning off-road diesel:



I give up.
:bash::bash::bash:
 
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I talked to Chevron on the phone today. To make things simple stay away from the blue label or any Bx label where x = 15, 20 etc. He said the blue label chemically is bad for Mercedes engines.
But all Chevron and Texaco will Never Be above 5%
 

cdcorpe

2014 Murphy Bed
Shell said the same about nothing above 5%, but also said they do not own all the Shell stations & the owners can buy any fuel they want & I have seen 20 % diesel at Shell.
 

alichty

2014 LTV Unity TB
I have driven away from a Shell station in Prineville OR with B20 labeled on the pumps.
 

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