What is Fuel Polishing?

What is fuel polishing

Fuel polishing basically means fuel filtration and is the process of passing fuel through a filter system until it meets a cleanliness standard that is fit for use in your equipment. The desired cleanliness level is subjective, however there is an agreed industry standard. The standard is based on an ISO test labelled ISO 4406 and the desired cleanliness code is 18/16/13, read more about this here.  Only high end fuel polishing systems will incorporate the following specifications of certified & tested filter efficiencies:

  • Removes ALL free standing water – SAE J1839
  • Separates ALL emulsified water – SAE J1488
  • Filters solid debris to a level of 10 microns or lower
  • ISO 4406:1999 Code 18/16/13 or better

Why do we need Fuel Polishing?

Diesel Fuel is contaminated when delivered

At the start of 2011 the EU introduced a 7% bio diesel mix into ALL diesels. Bio diesel holds onto water droplets and keeps water in suspension throughout the tank. Large particles of water will become too heavy for suspension and fall to the bottom.

Condensation in Fuel Tanks

Naturally occurring condensation is prevalent in warmer climates where the days are hot and the night’s cold. In the UK this problem occurs from Spring to Autumn. The change in air temperature contrasts against the temperature of the fuel inside the fuel tank. This contrast is the catalyst for water droplets to form inside and outside of the fuel tank. Over time the volume of water can be considerable.

Why is water in fuel an issue?

Microbial growth (commonly known as Diesel Bug) requires water to form. The presence of water sporns massive diesel bug outbreaks which cause engine stopages. Please click here to learn more about Diesel Bug. Or jump to see our range of Fuel Polishing Systems.

Debris accumulation

Sand, dust and metals can accumulate in your fuel tank over time.

  • Sand and dust can find its way into the fuel tank through the breather pipe and when filling.
  • Metals form in the tank in the form of rust, particularly when water is present. The water causes oxidation of the metals and the diesel bug causes the fuel to become acidic. The acidic fuel can eat the metal of the tank.