[Vwdiesel] Low sulfer fuel

Roger Brown r.c.brown at ieee.org
Fri Feb 25 15:11:24 EST 2005

Yes, it was the initial attempt in California about a dozen years ago to mandate a lower sulphur fuel that ended up removing
many of the essential aromatics along with the sulphur that diminished the lubricity and seal conditioning in the fuel.  This
led to nearly every pump in the state leaking untold quantities of raw fuel and costing every owner $100s to $1000s to repair
their pumps.  After a while "alpha testing" the new fuel on the population, they said a quiet "oops", changed the refining
process to make the fuel kinder to pumps and went back to business as usual.  I think it was then that they came up with the
MTBE gasoline additive that was supposed to save the world and in turn ended up polluting ground water and forcing every service
station to put in new storage tanks.  Now MTBE is nearly phased out and is a bad thing.

One would hope that lessons were learned here and that future fuel reformulations will take into account other factors in a fuel
aside from the pollution reduction, but then again, see who is doing the regulation making!

Gerry Wolfe wrote:
> My understanding is that it's not the sulphur which lubricates.  However,
> the refining process which removes the sulphur is what reduced the
> lubricity.  Happened in the past, dunno if newer refining processess would
> have the same effect.
> Compensate by using a diesel fuel additive (such as Stanadyne) which returns
> the lubricity, or maybe add a bit of 2-stroke oil to the fuel, or perhaps
> both (no... I don't wear suspenders and a belt...)
> rgds, g.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Justin and Chelly Bennett" <cjb at midrivers.com>
> To: <vwdiesel at vwfans.com>
> Sent: Friday, February 25, 2005 11:41
> Subject: [Vwdiesel] Low sulfer fuel
> > Correct me if I am wrong.  But as I understand things our old diesels
> > require the higher sulfer content to keep the pump and injector
> > mechanisims operating correctly. If this is true, does this mean we will
> > be required to keep dosing them no matter what.  Kind of like the old
> > hot rods with engines that require leaded fuel.  And yes unleaded fuel
> > can ruin an engine designed for leaded fuel.  Personal experience
> > maintaining a P&W 985.  Used to run car gas, when leaded fuel disappeard
> > the operator ruined 4 cylinders because the exhaust valve seat would
> > hammer into the head.  He started blending car gas and 100 LL av gas and
> > the valve problems went away.
> > Justin
> >
> > >I can't wait to see the price of diesel once the low sulfer fuel is
> > >mandatory!  The price should increase dramatically.


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