Diesel fuel gelling - At what temperature do you idle your truck?

Discussion in 'General Diesel Fuel Discussion' started by Mike, Dec 12, 2014.

  1. rigjockey

    rigjockey Token Canadian.

    The Last run out to the western part of Canada, A driver that had made that run many times told me, You are going to be running the truck the whole time. He was right.
    Unfreaking real, i was idling the truck and getting no bunk heat. I had to bump up the idle even higher than I normally do.
    I was tired and had not been out there before but, Later it occurred to me if I parked the other way the wind would not be blowing into the radiator.

    It was -21c or -6F .Small potatoes, I was more worried about fuel gelling. Or with these new crap GEL batteries they suck in the cold. Not to mention the DEF system.
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  2. Blood

    Blood Driveler Emeritus Supporter

    Glad it's not an issue for me but I've heard drivers say that the DEF crystallized in higher temps than that.
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  3. rigjockey

    rigjockey Token Canadian.

    Yup when I had the Pete it dropped to -40F and C. The DEF froze and they had to replace the entire system.
  4. Kiwi303

    Kiwi303 Not a fruit

    There should be an emergency kit fitted... A catheter tube, a dietetic pill and a gallon of juice in the cab...

    Of your DEF freezes, glug the juice, hook up the tube and swallow the pill...

    Ought to get you back to somewhere warm feeding body temp urea to the system.
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  5. rigjockey

    rigjockey Token Canadian.

    Or better yet The truck makers could add a low temp heater to the DEF system.
  6. Injun

    Injun Rabid Squaw Staff Member Supporter


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  7. Les2

    Les2 Hobbie Trucker

    Or even better yet, do away with this BS junk on trucks!
  8. Copperhead

    Copperhead Well-Known Member

    I was under the impression that the DEF tank is also warmed via engine coolant that is routed thru the DEF tank. If not I suppose a setup like the fuel heaters from Arctic Fox would be the ideal mod to a DEF tank. One could even have a Webasto or Espar diesel fired engine coolant heater and route some of that thru the warming tubing on the DEF tank and have everything ready to go, both engine and DEF, in about an hour like it was a warm summer day.

    After all the stuff I have read about the new emissions engines, if I ever get one, it will have a Webasto or Espar engine coolant heater on it. They are not going to do away with all this emissions stuff, so the best move would be to find a solution to keep it all running in peak form and reduce problems.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Mike

    Mike Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Let's bring up an old thread, LOL.

    I managed to find myself in Colorado tonight. Supposed to be down to 17. That's not super cold, but my last fillup was down on I-10 in New Mexico. I check the Petro app, and it doesn't show the fuel to be winter blended there. Oh yeah, and I haven't added any anti-gel, nor currently carrying any with me.

    Last night, it got down to 22, but the tanks were much fuller, and I didn't worry about it.

    Tonight, between 1/4 and 1/2, and it's a bio blend, so not sure how low I trust the fuel.

    I think I will be idling the truck tonight for the first time. Probably don't need to, but with a bio blend and 17 degrees, really not comfortable with the risk.
  10. Tazz

    Tazz Infidel Supporter

    Don't you have the arctic package on that evolution?
  11. Mike

    Mike Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Yeah, but don't know if that returns enough fuel to the tanks to keep things warm.
  12. Tazz

    Tazz Infidel Supporter

    10-4. I was caught up in Menomonee my first winter here and I called in asking how the hell to keep the engine idling because it was going to be -5 and I had 1/3 tanks. Shop guy said no worries the tripac took care of that. But we have ground skirts and the like. It keeps the underside warmish (when I checked one time in Michigan it had the pocket under the truck in the 20's with an ambient of 5).

    Idle your truck anyways, don't want you trying to send me a bill for freeze up:mad:

    And damn sure do not need you with any free time waiting on the thaw. I am all out of warnings:(
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  13. Mike

    Mike Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Yeah, i got the fancy plastic hiding the fuel tanks.

    I would imagine that you fuel was at least a winter blend. That's the only thing that concerns me, knowing this crap isn't blended at all.

    It's already been creating havoc on my fuel filter, not wanting to flow through it as well, running much higher on the filter than it should be until the fuel warms up.

    I had no intentions of ending up where I am, none at all, LOL.
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  14. BirchBarlow

    BirchBarlow I hate KW 680s

    Yeah my folks used to do stupid **** like that too
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  15. Tazz

    Tazz Infidel Supporter

    That stuff works. Once your done opening windows for the winter we do that here.
    • Like Like x 1
  16. ironpony

    ironpony Well-Known Member Supporter

    I'll put some antigel in if the temp is going to drop into the teens - I don't trust biodiesel to not gel, and the Tripak fuel lines have trouble in cold weather. I base how much I put in on my afternoon fuel level, whether I've added fuel in the last 24 hours, and whether there was any antigel in the tanks the previous evening. I also have a FASS on the truck that filters out moisture, so I don't worry too much about ice getting into the fuel filter.

    The fuel pump on a DD15 keeps the rail to the injectors at a very high pressure. The engine returns a lot of fuel to the tanks, and its warmed up, going back into the tanks. So unless its very cold (late at night,) I don't worry too much about gelling unless its very cold, or I'm pouring evil biodiesel in the tanks.

    I don't use a lot of antigel any more.

    Idling? Below -10 F. I've done OK shutting the truck down above that.

    My bunk heater will run all night without having the APU on. I have AGM batteries that won't drop so low that the truck is in danger of not starting. Besides, I can always fire up the Tripak.

    Last edited: Dec 2, 2016
  17. Injun

    Injun Rabid Squaw Staff Member Supporter

    I've never used antigel.

    Idling will not hurt Mike's non-emissions truck.
  18. mndriver

    mndriver curmudgeon extraordinare Staff Member Supporter

    Won't help either.

    Not a single fuel stop can afford the risk of a bunch of drivers gelling up. All things I learned when I was having fuel issues in December 2013.

    If you do, it has to do with something got into your system and contaminated it.

    In my case, it was the result of 9-10 months sitting on a lot being dealt with in a bankruptcy.

    @Injun remember Cross Creek Produce? My truck was part of that deal.

    Once I got rid of the moisture in my system, it's been fine ever since.

    I did it using a super dose of diesel 911. Every October before it goes below freezing, I hit it again so the moisture remover in Diesel 911 is the strongest and i don't have to double the amount as required because of increased biodiesel or too cold of a temperature.

    Every fuel stop has already added powerservice to their fuel come 1 November already just so they don't have to provide straight #1 diesel.

    I wish #1 was available more easily. I'd run it more. Especially in my reefer.
  19. marshbrett

    marshbrett New Member

    Hopping into your truck and gunning it straightaway will put unnecessary strain on your engine. It takes 5 to 15 minutes for your engine to warm up, so take it nice and easy for the first part of your drive.
  20. mndriver

    mndriver curmudgeon extraordinare Staff Member Supporter

    I'd worry more about the accessory systems like the power steering until that has had a chance to warm up.

    But yes, starting the truck and going into pulling I68, I64 grades of West Virginia or I90 4th of July isn't exactly the most healthy things to do.

    I've noticed my oil pressure won't drop to normal for 30-40 minutes in the morning on temps below 10-20.

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