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Red Diesel chat............

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Turkster, May 7, 2012.

  1. Turkster
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    Turkster Bro.Paul 2.5TDI Quattro Sport

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    I was in the pub the other eve when the cost of fuel came up, I spoke about using used cooking oils that have been filtered and an a bit of the snake oil addertive to it was worth a shot when my other mate perked up with "Red Diesel" and went on to say he's been using it for years,

    We all sat there and spoke about the risks, engine damage and getting pulled and dipped, So i did a bit of sniffing about online to get clued up to have a better idea about what he was banging on about, TBH i found no real truth in any damage to engines, Red Diesel seems to be regular diesel but with a added red liquid to show that tax has not been paid on it,

    So my question to you is , Does Red Diesel Damage a Engine ?
    Last edited: May 8, 2012
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  2. gary3306
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    gary3306 Member

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    No. Its exactly the same stuff as normal diesel, just with added dye to make it red. You can have a dye added to diesel as a security measure (but not red). We were having a lot of diesel thefts at work so we applied to HMRC to have dye added. The dye that is added is a made up formula for your particular company, so any amount of companies could have say yellow diesel (as we had), but the chemical make-up of the dye is different for each. Therefore if it is dipped/tested, they know which company it came from.

    So, no. There is no engine damage from red. Use it at your peril if you're caught though. VOSA along with HMRC are doing more and more checkpoints specifically because of the cost of fuel going up, and people using red. You never know when it's going to happen either. Oh and they can detect a teaspoonful of red in something ridiculous like 500 litres :ohmy:
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  3. sportstractor
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    sportstractor Chugger

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    Not worth the risk IMHO. As your bound to have your vehicle tested if you start using it... Living in quite an agricultural area they test for it a fair bit, but iv got a couple mates with secondary tanks. One of which passed the test!
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  4. ScottD3
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    ScottD3 I want your faulty electronics

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    No harm in red diesel at all.
    Only harm is if you get a batch thats contaminated or really poor quality.

    Its not worth the risks at all.

    But its great if the bloke next door is a **** with a diesel car. :)
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  5. crazy88
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    crazy88 Loving the anonymity

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    Haha! I like that idea Scott. I may have to remember that.
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  6. CHEZ
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    CHEZ moderately amusing

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    like what scott says, if you get a bad batch or is poor quality you can feel the difference!
    i wouldn"t chance it these days as i value my car too much and i know how **** your car runs on bad stuff!
    years ago when money was tight i used to run my nova td on it, sometimes was ok but more often was really rough!
    as soon as i put the proper stuff in you could tell and feel the difference both mechanically and financially!
    i have done a full circle now and only run on v power diesel which my car seems to like but its £1.54 a litre now and rising!:slapped:
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  7. a6_chris
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    a6_chris Well-Known Member

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    I get dipped all the time .. I have no sympathy for those that get caught! IIRC its £500 for the first time, then £1000 + car impounded

    You would see the odd dodgy filling station over here selling green diesel (the ROIs Red equivalant) and its just as bad.

    I'm getting dipped on average once every 2 weeks now
    Last edited: May 8, 2012
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  8. sidibear
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    sidibear Looking for Zombies !! Staff Member Moderator

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    I was under the impression that it contained more sulphur.

    I do know it also contains an invisible marker along with the red dye, and that's how its still detected for so long after its been in your tank.
    The fine if you are caught alone will remove all savings you gain by using it.
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  9. Viking
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    Viking Member

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    :lmfao:I see there's 2 threads going on this, and I obviously answered in the wrong one....

    Copied from the other thread.

    DERV (road diesel) has a specification of 51 cetane (cetane basically being a measure of combustion quality) and 7% biofuel. Last year the specification for red diesel was changed to match the 7% biofuel level of DERV, but red diesel specification for cetane is only 45, which is 6 points lower than DERV.

    To compare, you're looking at the difference between 95ron petrol and something like 99ron petrol, but with inverted characteristics. So if you compare 95ron petrol with 51 cetane DERV as equal, then red diesel will be somewhere down about 91ron. Well below what you'd expect from regular pump fuel.

    Bear in mind that these are minimum specifications, and may not reflect what fuel is actually delivered. It may be that the refiners choose to produce one specification fuel (DERV spec) and add the dye to make it red diesel which is fine, but they cannot by law make red diesel spec and sell it as DERV. Having said that, the extra cost involved in refining fuel to DERV spec most likely means they stop at red diesel level and remove that portion of fuel product for agricultural and heating fuel use, and then continue refining to DERV spec for road fuel vehicles.

    So in answer to your question, does red diesel damage an engine? Probably not, but it's not doing the best job of actually fueling it to it's maximum potential. Add in the fact that if you do get dipped by HMRC then it's a bad day in hell.

    Edit: And yes, there's the invisible marker. Oh, and 20ppm sulphur for red diesel and 10ppm for DERV.
    Last edited: May 8, 2012
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  10. adamss24
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    adamss24 Well-Known Member

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    Just my 2 pence worth: there is no difference in red diesel, there are combine harvesters and farm machinery much more expensive than a regular car. Also, VAG diesels are specified/tuned to run on min 45 Cetane diesel, the higher the better. On the refinery they take the sulpfur out and call the diesel ULSD which makes the fuel "dry" so they need to add additives to keep the lubricity in spec.
    I tell you that older VE/PD are more resilient when using dirty/contaminated fuel, newer CR are **** and often fail. Use a decent funnel
    which can stop the water and should not pose any problems, the fuel filter should do a good enough job of filtering the **** so needs changing more often !
    As per the die they use to color the diesel, i keep/use 2 stroke oil with me every time. I also mix the odd diesel with petrol (sometimes i have to drain tanks which numpties fill with the wrong fuel) and used engine/gearbox oil and pour it in my tank every so often and apart from clogged fuel filters i did not have major issues ! I wish to see the Vosa technician's face when they take a sample of the fuel off out of my fuel tank !!!
    If they did not want the folk to use it then they should keep the fuel duty low. I used diesel mixed with straight veggie oil in my old fiesta courier van (1.8 IDI non turbo engine) for 5 years and only stopped when the price per liter nearly matched the diesel + i had to change the starter, battery and alternator to heavy duty items due to prolonged cranking times in winter when mixture had to much oil in it. I had issues mainly due to Ford crappy "push fit" fuel couplings which always let air in, replaced to normal jubilee clips and rubber hoses and had no issues after that when i sold it with 200k on the clock !
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  11. Turkster
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    Turkster Bro.Paul 2.5TDI Quattro Sport

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    i was looking at a 50/50 mix of diesel and cooking oils to see if there was any real savings there but the price of cooking oil is as bad as diesel so theres no real point, unless you get your oil for free and filter it yourself, I have run the Audi on 50/50 before, it did smell like a chip shop and needed cranking more to fire the car up, TBH i'm not looking for red for the audi, it was for the diesel powered jet washer I'v got as I dont want to stuff that motor up as they car expensive to put right if they go wrong,
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  12. Viking
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    Viking Member

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    You're not exactly correct there. There is a difference in specification, and if the refiners choose to carry the specs over to their production then there is a difference between red diesel and DERV. It may be that (as I said) they choose to run one fuel and dye it accordingly, or it may be that they separate the two and produce different fuels, but saying they're both the same may or may not be correct.
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  13. adamss24
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    adamss24 Well-Known Member

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    ^^^Friends of mine work in the middle of nowhere shifting sand and soil from one side to the other of the sites. They drive these massive Volvo trucks which run on red diesel. The chaps often drive their cars on the ref stuff and some were running golf mk3 tdi/audi a4 110 bhp for over 3-4 years without issues. If you compare the heating oil with red diesel then they will be different as it's about 35-40 cetane compared to 45-50 cetane so they are different !
    Older cars had a water drain on the fuel filter and you can drain the water from it periodically and the filters are cheap enough to replace if the get clogged. A VP37 pump on the a4/a6/passat golf 90-110Bhp is very, very tough and will last for hundreds of thousands miles with decent lubrication !
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  14. Viking
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    Viking Member

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    Red diesel and heating oil (gas oil, not kerosene) are the same product. Ultra 35 is slightly different and comes under a different tax bracket.
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  15. Ste_Nova
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    Ste_Nova Active Member

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    i've never ever been dipped, i regularly buy red for use in steam cleaner and generator, either from local farmer or from the red pump at a local petrol station, into barrels in trailer towed behind diesel car :)

    [​IMG]
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  16. murran
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    murran Active Member

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    ive been shopping at the 99p shops for new veggie oil for our soon to be ex-landrover. been putting the odd 6 litres in once a week for months with no ill effects.

    you do get a funny look buying 12 litres of oil at once.... but meh!
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  17. enoliver
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    enoliver Member

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    I used to be a traffic cop, and as such, I used to take the Customs and Excise road fuel testing unit Officers out on patrol; you see- Customs do not have the power to stop vehicles, so they use the police to do that. I can assure you that there is no difference between the two, other than the dye, to make it identifiable. In Ireland, there are plants which actually bleach the diesel, to disguise it.
    Customs officers do have the ability to examine the fuel to determine whether this has happened.
    However, more and more traffic cops are learning how to dip tanks, and test for themselves.
    you should be aware though, that if you are caught with red diesel in your tank, you face an immediate £500 fine, and if the vehicle is being driven at the time, a further £500 on the spot, with your vehicle being seized until payment is made. here is no court, no appeal. Their decision is final.
    Hope this helps.
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  18. Turkster
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    Turkster Bro.Paul 2.5TDI Quattro Sport

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    I would think that unless your driving a old car that's ready for the crusher that its just not worth it, the 50/50 mix is great if you can get the oil at the right price, I don't think there is any said bleaching going on this side of the water, But i know that in Ireland that its big business, I've seen the make shift fuel stations, I'd not use them as I know 1st hand whats involved in replacing a fuel pump in a 2.5TDI,
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  19. Ste_Nova
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    Ste_Nova Active Member

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    so thats a £1000 fine max? i spent £660 on fuel last month, £1000 would easily be saved :)
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