or Methyl Ester as it's also known, is a clean burning
and renewable fuel alternative to mineral diesel made
predominantly from vegetable oils.
Biodiesel's physical and chemical properties are very
similar to normal diesel, so it can be mixed and used
as a blend with Derv or on its own. (Specification
Why should I use Biodiesel?
Biodiesel is cheaper than mineral diesel. With fuel
bills representing 35% of an operator's costs, using Biodiesel
will enable savings to be made. (See
The environmental benefits of using Biodiesel will enhance
the operator's reputation.
Better ignition and combustion
Biodiesel has better ignition and combustion characteristics
(due to a higher Cetane Index), which allows the engine
to run more smoothly with less of the "knocking" sounds
typical of diesel engines.
Reduces exhaust emissions
Biodiesel substantially reduces exhaust emissions (unburned
hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and particulate matter).
It contains naturally occurring oxygen, which enables
the fuel to burn more completely and all but eliminate
the black smoke normally associated with diesel engines.
There may be a slight increase in NOx emissions but this
is dependant on the engine type and its operating environment.
Improves lubricity & reduces engine wear
Biodiesel has very good intrinsic lubrication properties.
Even blends as low as B1 (1% in ULSD) can improve the
lubricity in highly de-sulphurised mineral diesel. In
engines approved for operation with B100 Biodiesel, the
engine wear is significantly reduced.
Using Biodiesel as a B20 or B30 blend (20/30% mix with
normal diesel) has no reported effect on fuel consumption.
Some operators have even suggested it actually improves
fuel consumption. There may be a slight increase in fuel
consumption when using B100 pure Biodiesel, however the
effects are mitigated by the improved ignition and combustion
qualities of Biodiesel.
biodegradable and non toxic
Biodiesel has a higher flashpoint than mineral diesel.
It is also readily biodegradable and non toxic, which
makes it a safer and more environmentally friendly fuel
to handle, particularly in sensitive areas.
Biodiesel is naturally free of sulphur and so produces
no sulphur dioxide, considered to be one of the main precursors
to acid rain.
Carbon dioxide neutral
Biodiesel is made from renewable resources, which means
it reduces the contribution of carbon dioxide (one of
the main greenhouse gases) to the atmosphere.
How is Biodiesel used by others?
as a 5% blend with mineral diesel, referred to as B5 Biodiesel
is now permitted within the EN590 mineral diesel specification
across Europe. There are pressures from within the European
Community to increase this ratio, but no agreement has
been reached as yet.
In the UK, we recommend that operators consider switching
to the B20 or B30 grade. This is a blend of 20/30% Biodiesel
with 80/70% mineral diesel. B20/B30 are optimum blends
for all year round performance and cost savings. Experienced
operators can convert to higher blend ratios up to B100
(100% pure Biodiesel) when UK summer fuel specifications
apply, to take full advantage of the benefits and savings
Biodiesel can bring. Ready
blended B20/B30 grade now available!
In Germany Biodiesel is made from oil seed rape to the
European Standard EN14214, and is used extensively as
B100 by commercial vehicle and bus operators across Germany.
A range of Biodiesel blends in ULSD are also widely used.
truck and bus operators prefer a blend of 20% Biodiesel
manufactured to the US Standard ASTM D 6751 in mineral
diesel which is referred to as B20 Biodiesel. The B20
blend currently provides commercial vehicle operators
in the US with the optimum cost vs benefit balance.
At blends from B5 up to B20/B30,
Biodiesel is easy to use. No new equipment and no modifications
to existing equipment are necessary. Simply treat it
as though it were ordinary mineral diesel. You just
need to be aware of the handling characteristics of
the fuel particularly if using it in higher concentration
blends above B20/B30.
the engine manufacturers say
Manufacturers provide warranties on their products against
failure, where such failure is directly attributable
to their own faulty materials or workmanship. Using
any fuel, whether it is ULSD, Derv or Biodiesel does
not in itself affect the engine manufacturers warranty.
private and commercial vehicle manufacturers have approved
the B5 (5%) Biodiesel blend within mineral diesel.
such as Mercedes in their BR 300, 400, 500 and 900 series
engines, DAF in their LF, CF and XF Models, Scania and
MAN Trucks, Peugeot Citroen Group have all approved
certain models and engine types to use with B30 - B100
Biodiesel. Other manufacturers have adopted different
positions regarding the use of Biodiesel and we are
able to help with identifying the suitability of a particular
vehicle or engine type.
Biodiesel as a B5 blend
Biodiesel as a 5% blend in Derv is fully accepted within
the EN590 diesel specification.
Biodiesel as a B20/B30 Blend
We recommend that operators consider the B20/B30 grade,
a blend of 20/30% Biodiesel with 80/70% mineral Diesel.
B20/B30 are the optimum blends for year round performance
and represents a good balance between cost savings,
emissions, cold weather performance, materials compatibility
and cleaning effect. Once blended, B20/B30 may be treated
exactly like ordinary Diesel.
blended B20/B30 grade
pure Biodiesel as B100
Experienced operators can convert to higher blend ratios
(up to B100 the 100% pure Biodiesel grade) when UK summer
fuel specifications apply. B100 enables full advantage
to be taken of the savings and benefits Biodiesel can
to help you enjoy the commercial
benefits of using Biodiesel
Vehicle suitability - can my vehicles use Biodiesel?
will evaluate your vehicle fleet profile and determine
its suitability for running on Biodiesel as recommended
by the vehicle manufacturers.
will provide you with assistance and support to ensure
a smooth conversion to this renewable fuel, with no
disruption to your operations.
Storage - can I use my existing diesel storage?
will evaluate your current diesel storage arrangements
and suggest how you can introduce Biodiesel into your
fuel mix at the appropriate blend ratio.
storage tank capacity is limited, we can arrange to
co-ordinate the delivery of Biodiesel, with deliveries
from your mineral diesel supplier, to ensure the required
blend ratio is maintained.
will deliver pure B100 Biodiesel to your site to ensure
you maintain the required blend ratio in your mineral
will retain the flexibility to buy your mineral diesel
from your preferred supplier.
minimum quantities apply and the required grade is not
pre-blended before delivery).
TAKE YOUR FIRST STEP TO USING BIODIESEL IN CONFIDENCE
Storing and handling Biodiesel?
Ambient external temperature
2) Cleaning effect
3) Materials compatibility
4) Fuel stability
these considerations are important for higher concentrations
of Biodiesel and B100, their effects on B20 and below
are significantly reduced. It is useful however as a B20
user to be aware of them, to have a better understanding
of the fuel's characteristics.
blended B20 grade now available!
As with all diesel fuels, Biodiesel will start to turn
cloudy at very low temperatures. This effect is also known
as waxing or gelling. Although the formation of waxes
is reversed as the fuel temperature rises, their presence
may lead to blocked fuel filters.
To prevent waxing of the Biodiesel in storage during the
winter months, it should be maintained at an appropriate
temperature or blended with mineral diesel.
As a mild solvent, Biodiesel has excellent cleaning properties.
It will loosen and dissolve any accumulated sediment left
by mineral diesel in fuel tanks, fuel lines and fuel systems
whether in bulk storage or in the vehicle itself. The
extent of sediment build up will depend on the age and
condition of the storage tank or vehicle, but fuel filters
may well clog up with these mineral diesel deposits if
the fuel tanks and systems are not cleaned before using
The level of this cleaning effect depends on the concentration
of the Biodiesel blend being used and the amount of sediment
in the fuel system to start with.
These same cleaning qualities may affect paintwork and
the adhesives fixing graphics or signs to a vehicle or
tank, so if Biodiesel is spilled, it must be wiped up
Biodiesel is compatible with seals, gaskets and adhesives
found in many vehicles in use today, but may not be compatible
with certain polymers and rubbers found in hoses and gaskets
that typically form part of the fuel system found in older
vehicles. There have not been any significant material
compatibility issues with B20 however.
blended B20/B30 grade now available!
As with diesel fuel, Biodiesel has a long-term storage
life, beyond which its stability may become affected.
In diesel fuel terms, this is referred to as oxidation
stability. UK produced Biodiesel will include additives
to ensure the fuel meets appropriate standards for oxidation
stability, and be suitable for storing for a minimum "best
practice" period of 6 months. As with ordinary diesel
fuel, it is recommended that Biodiesel should not be stored
for any longer than this.
External conditions, such as water, heat and sunlight
can affect the stability of the fuel. When Biodiesel is
stored, care must be taken to ensure all storage tanks
are clean and dry (free of water) before using it for
the first time.
For further information please contact