Diesel Fuel Grades – What’s the Best to Choose?

Types of diesel fuel grades

Do you know that diesel fuel comes in different grades, each with its own benefits and drawbacks? But which one is the best for your vehicle? And more importantly, how do you know which grade to use?

In this blog post, we’ll explore the different diesel fuel grades and what each one is best suited for. We’ll also discuss some of the benefits of using biodiesel fuel.

So, whether you’re a business owner looking to reduce your operating costs or a homeowner who wants to be more environmentally friendly, read on to learn more about diesel fuel grades and find out which one is right for you.

Grades of Diesel Fuel

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) required that all highway diesel fuels sold in the United States meet requirements before they are available to the public. This is supposed to assist cut diesel vehicle emissions significantly.

For these very reasons, there are a variety of diesel fuel grades available which is used commercially, here are four of the most common:

AG Diesel

AG diesel, also known as red diesel, is a type of diesel fuel that is specially formulated for use in agricultural equipment. It contains a higher concentration of lubricating oils to protect engines from wear and tear.

AG Diesel is also usually for off-road vehicles and other equipment that aren’t able to run on regular roads.

As a result, AG gasoline isn’t subject to the same taxes as other fuels used in highway automobiles. The cost of red diesel fuel is far less than that of other varieties available at the gas station.

There are many benefits of using AG diesel, here are four of the most common:

  • Formulated to protect engines from wear and tear
  • Can be made from a variety of plant and animal oils
  • Safe to use in any diesel engine and is more environmentally friendly than other fuels

If you’re looking for a fuel that will prolong the life of your agricultural equipment, AG diesel is a great choice.

Diesel #1

Also known as “#1 diesel fuel” or “light fuel oil,” this is the lightest and most volatile of all the diesel fuel grades.

#1-grade products typically include more energy components. It has a low flash point and has less propensity to fail in winter environments.

Paraffin (a form of wax) has also been removed from the chemical combination, which is why it remains liquid throughout the winter months.

Diesel #2

Also known as “#2 diesel fuel” or “medium fuel oil,” this grade of diesel is the most popular and widely available. It’s a bit heavier than Diesel #1 but still volatile.

The highest grade of diesel fuel, which is known as #2 diesel, is widely available at gas stations across the world.

This chemical combination has the greatest concentration of energy components and lubricant qualities in one blend and delivers the best fuel performance available on the market today.

#2 is typically less expensive than #1 because it doesn’t require the same level of refinement to market.

The disadvantage of diesel fuel is that, when the temperature drops, it tends to become a thickened gel. This frequently causes difficult starts and other problems during the winter season.

Diesel #4

Also known as “#4 diesel fuel” or “heavy fuel oil,” this is the heaviest and least volatile of all the diesel fuel grades. It has a high flash point and is used in warm weather climates.

Winterized Diesel Fuel

Winterized diesel fuel is a type of diesel fuel that has been treated to lower its pour point. This makes it less likely to gel in cold weather.

Winterized diesel fuel is typically a mix of #1 and #2 fuels that, when combined, have a higher proportion of #1-grade diesel fuel. These fuels are employed in the months when it becomes too chilly to use #2-grade gasoline.

The blend of both grades of fuel should have enough energy components and lubricant properties to avoid the chemical mix from gelling in the winter. Because demand for it is lower during the winter months, fuel efficiency decreases somewhat.

how to choose diesel fuel grade

What is Biodiesel – What are its Benefits?

Biodiesel is a renewable, sustainable fuel made from plant and animal oils. It can be used in any diesel engine with little or no modification. In fact, many newer diesel engines are designed to run on biodiesel fuel.

So, if you’re looking for a more environmentally friendly fuel option for your truck, biodiesel is a great choice.

Choosing the Correct Diesel Fuel for Your Engine Type

There are numerous important factors that must be considered in the selection of your diesel fuel. These include:

1- Diesel Fuel Cleanliness and Stability

Cleanliness and stability are important factors in determining the lifespan of diesel fuel.

Any fuel used in engines, whether they are cars, trucks, or generators, will eventually degrade and cause problems. The rate at which this degradation occurs is dependent on a number of factors, but the two most important are cleanliness and stability.

Diesel fuel cleanliness is a measure of how free the fuel is of particulates and other contaminants. The higher the level of contaminants, the more quickly the fuel will degrade.

Fuel stability, on the other hand, is a measure of how resistant the fuel is to oxidation. Oxidation is a chemical reaction that causes molecules to break down, and it is accelerated by heat and light exposure.

Over time, oxidation will cause the molecules in diesel fuel to break down, making it less effective as a fuel. Together, these two factors determine how long diesel fuel will remain usable. For this reason, it is important to purchase diesel fuels that have been treated to improve their cleanliness and stability.

2- Diesel Fuel Volatility

Diesel fuel volatility is the measure of how easily the fuel evaporates at different temperatures.

The colder the temperatures, the higher the fuel’s boiling point and the less volatile it becomes. On the other hand, warmer temperatures make the liquid easier to vaporize, thus making it more volatile.

This is why diesel engines are often equipped with after-coolers, which help to lower the temperature of the air that enters the engine. By reducing the air temperature, the engine can run on a more efficient, less volatile fuel.

In addition, after-coolers also help to reduce emissions and improve engine performance. As a result, they are an essential piece of equipment for any diesel-powered vehicle.

3- Diesel Fuel’s Viscosity and Lubricity

Viscosity is a measure of a fluid’s resistance to flow, and lubricity is a measure of its ability to reduce friction. Both of these properties are essential for proper engine operation.

Fuel with high viscosity and lubricity can help to protect engine components from wear and tear, and it can also improve fuel efficiency.

As a result, it is important to choose a diesel fuel that meets the specifications of your engine. Otherwise, you may notice increased engine noise, increased fuel consumption, or reduced engine power.

Besides all the above, it is essential to consider:

  • Atmospheric conditions
  • Engine size, design, speed, and load range
  • Engine maintenance and starting characteristics
  • Fuel handling, cost, and availability
  • Wear on rings, valves, cylinder liners, pistons & injection equipment

Ideally, the first step in choosing the right diesel fuel is to identify the type of engine you have. There are two types of diesel engines: compression ignition (CI) and glow plug (GP).

Compression-ignition (CI) engines are typically found in trucks and buses. These engines use a high compression ratio to ignite the fuel.

Glow-plug (GP) engines are typically found in cars and vans. These engines use a small electrical heater to Ignite the fuel.

Once you know the type of engine you have, you can choose the right diesel fuel. For compression-ignition (CI) engines, you should use Diesel #1 or Diesel #2. For glow-plug (GP) engines, you should use Diesel #1 or Biodiesel.