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Old 10-17-2015, 05:23 PM   #1
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Fuel additives

Would like to know those out there that are using fuel additives in their tanks, and if you do what product do you us , and what are the improvements you are hoping for ,or experiencing ?

Chris D Liberty
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Old 10-17-2015, 06:17 PM   #2
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I believe that most fuel additive are worthless. Maybe a biocide if you have water and algae in your tank. Otherwise.....

David
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Old 10-17-2015, 06:24 PM   #3
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I'm with David. I think the conversation needs to be distinguished between boats that are used consistently and those with a lot of idle time and not much maintenance or tanks not kept full or both.
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Old 10-17-2015, 06:24 PM   #4
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I usually use an additive, have been using the Racor brand concentrate, but they've stopped making it now. Haven't found a replacement yet.
Running the numbers it was costing something like 1.3 cents a gallon, really minuscule. Never really got and exact before/after on burn rate, but exhaust sooting cleared up a lot, cleaner hull. In quite a few years use never had a fuel fouled injector, on top end tear downs combustion chambers looked fine.
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Old 10-17-2015, 06:29 PM   #5
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On the advice of acquaintances and friends in the marine diesel manufacturing industry we use two additives, both by Hammonds. One is a bug killer the other is a lubricity booster. We've used both for the 17 years we've owned our FL120-powered cruiser in the PNW.

Don't know if they help but they don't hurt and the reasons for using both of them, particularly the lubricity booster for the old jerk-injection FL120s, are sound in my opinion.
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Old 10-17-2015, 06:33 PM   #6
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I use Castrol TT 2 stroke in my 4x4 300:1 which is common rail injection it make a massive difference

In anything else apart from common rail injection diesel (electric diesel ) I can see no benefit . Pump and injector diesels are very forgiving in what quality of fuel is used where as I know the difference between Shell and Caltex in the 4x4 . We are very lucky in Australia with marine fuel supply's/quality .

On a side note a friend runs 200 trucks and has a flue bill in the $Millions and doesn't use additives
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Old 10-17-2015, 08:31 PM   #7
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I believe that most fuel additive are worthless. Maybe a biocide if you have water and algae in your tank. Otherwise.....

David
That would be plus 2 for Dave.

Biocide yes, when needed. For "Value Added" performance improvement = Snake Oil.
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Old 10-17-2015, 09:27 PM   #8
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Algae doesn't form in fuel tanks. It needs light to grow and live. What can develop in diesel (and jet) fuel are bacteria and other microbiotic organisms. My understanding is that they live in the water and feed on the fuel. That's what biocides like Biobor JF are for.
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Old 10-17-2015, 10:47 PM   #9
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Valvtec, the marina adds it whenever they get a tanker of fuel. About once every year I add Stanadyn performance additive, a little insurance against injection system problems is what I hope I'am getting.


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Old 10-18-2015, 12:13 AM   #10
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Stanadyn

I just gave away a case of Stanadyn fuel additive. When the Duramax first came into California they were having problems with injectors sticking. GM recommended adding this to your tank. They claimed there wasn't enough lubricant in California diesel. After remapping the injection the problem went away so I ended up with this case of Stanadyn, it claims to also have a cetain booster, probably misspelled. With my Detroit's they could care less as long as it smells like oil and is slippery, it will burn it.
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Old 10-18-2015, 12:33 AM   #11
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Old 10-18-2015, 12:37 AM   #12
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No additives at all for me. It comes with what's needed, other wise the competing companies would bombard us with advertising claims. I buy it and use it before its gets old.

I only run from day tanks which can only be filled by the polishing system. I keep the day tanks up to the top of the sight gauge, so not quite full, when not using the boat. I've yet to change the 2 um filter on the polisher, so new tanks and clean fuel fills have worked fine.
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Old 10-18-2015, 12:55 AM   #13
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In the mid-1970's, I worked for a local tug company whose tugs burned more than 1 million gallons/month. During my shore side employment, we had two additive salesmen come through claiming all sorts of things. The short story is that the company tested these additives both in sister tugs, and then again on individual tugs with and without the additives. At the end of the day, we reverted to good old No. 2.
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Old 10-18-2015, 01:01 AM   #14
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We go through a lot of fuel and keep tanks full. Still we do get a biocide automatically in that we generally purchase Valvtech fuel. Other times another somewhat comparable fuel with a biocide in it as well.
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Old 10-18-2015, 01:04 AM   #15
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My other additive story has to do with the contamination of the fuel oil in WESTERLY upon purchase in 1997. After treating with Biobor, cleaning the skeletons out of the tanks and installing drain valves on the tank sumps with monthly draining, the fuel oil has been very clean since 1998. Of course part of this is getting good clean fuel, but most of the story is keeping water out of the tanks.

So, no additives since 1998. The stern stays clean, and we installed rebuilt injectors after 4000 hours.
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Old 10-18-2015, 09:22 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Liberty2015 View Post
Would like to know those out there that are using fuel additives in their tanks, and if you do what product do you us , and what are the improvements you are hoping for ,or experiencing ?

Chris D Liberty
Chris

A couple of worthwhile links on the subject....

Practical Sailor Diesel Additives - evaluates several and actually found some to be detrimental as they promote tank corrosion! (Prior to reading this I was with many posts here - snakeoil - at least re: any improvement - never thought they could be detrimental though!?

Another comprehensive look - I haven't read completely through this yet but thought is was relevant
Pratical Sailor Diesel Biocides Take On Contaminated Boat Fuel - July 2009 - PDF

Diesel Biocides Take On Contaminated Boat Fuel - online article

In a previous TF post on diesel fuel cafesport (post #18) did a good job of explaining diesel bugs

Personally I use Biobor periodically to prevent any "Bugs" and always prior to winter lay-up. Not as often when cruising and using fuel regularly.
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Old 10-18-2015, 09:59 AM   #17
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Thanks Bacchus,

Good to do the research and consider all the info available. It would appear the majority seem to not favour additives for lots of different reasons.

Cheers Chris D Liberty
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Old 10-18-2015, 10:33 AM   #18
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Soltron - Inexpensive and it works... in diesel or gasoline.

7 yrs ago, when we purchased our Tolly; I cleaned up my "loaded with crap" gas fuel system by double dosing for a couple months with Soltron. Have not had a spec of sludge or water in filters since and have experienced no eco-to-dino fuel separation. Use it at recommended dose each fill-up and when visiting boat for any reason I drop ounce or so into tanks between fill-ups when extended periods of time ensue - like during winter months.

SOLTRON16 - SOLTRON - Enzyme Fuel Treatment 16 oz (500ml) Bottle for only $23.95 !

Soltron - The enzyme fuel treatment for diesel and petrol engines

Happy Fuel-Treatment Daze! - Art

PS: I purchase Soltron at NAPA Auto... simple and easy!
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Old 10-18-2015, 10:39 AM   #19
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Thanks Bacchus,

Good to do the research and consider all the info available. It would appear the majority seem to not favour additives for lots of different reasons.

Cheers Chris D Liberty
My take on what I've read of comprehensive studies vs individual opinions is that additives are not really essential or beneficial "in a perfect world" - meaning good clean & dry fuel - but they can be beneficial if / when you get contamination mostly from water. Those w/ polishing systems probably have less of a risk - I don't so have decided to "play it safe" and use a recommended biocide as a preventative measure.
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Old 10-18-2015, 11:33 AM   #20
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Would like to know those out there that are using fuel additives in their tanks, and if you do what product do you us , and what are the improvements you are hoping for ,or experiencing ?

Chris D Liberty
The improvement expected is increased lubricity, which has been significantly reduced by removing most of the sulfur from ULSD fuel, as well as slightly increased cetane ratings. These are quantitative values that can be measured and compared between different additives. If all additives are snake oil, then they could only be so if higher cetane and increase lubricity had no value, or if they do have value no additive improves them. Is there any evidence that is true?

There is a good comparison done by an independent lab of the relative performance in increasing lubricity of various products here: Lubricity Additive Study Results - Diesel Place : Chevrolet and GMC Diesel Truck Forums

Marvel Mystery Oil, Valvtech, and a few others reduced lubricity, so I guess if you are looking for snake oil, they would be candidates.
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