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Old 03-07-2020, 11:26   #16
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

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Originally Posted by thinwater View Post
Nearly all water comes from leaks. Hopefully these were addressed during replacement, but make sure the cap is tight, the O-ring in good condition, and the filler is not in a drainage path.
Yes, water can come from leaks, but in my experience most of the water that I find in my 180 gallon S.S. fuel tanks comes from either condensation (if the tanks are not full) or with the fuel itself.
Both of my tanks have a drain valve at the lowest point and before every trip I open the valves and drain about a half pint of fuel from each tank. Depending on how frequently I drain them I find anywhere from a few drops to maybe half an ounce of water.
I once got a “fresh“ load of fuel at a Marina before going out into the ocean and ended up spending the night at anchor 3 miles offshore while I got all of the water (about 3 quarts) out of my fuel tanks.

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Old 03-07-2020, 11:57   #17
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

Biobor, keep the o ring on your fill cap in good shape and add a shut off for the fill pipe just after the cap to ensure if your cap seal fails you can keep the majority of the water out.
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Old 03-07-2020, 12:10   #18
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

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Originally Posted by j.g.evans View Post
I was told by the importer of Yanmar engines to not use Biobore(sp?); but, to use FPPF. Biobore kills bacteria that forms at a water fuel boundary. The kill falls to the bottom of your tank and will eventually get stirred up and plug your fuel intake. The FPPF emulsifies the water and it is burned. With no water to live on there is no bacteria. I have used only FPPF (1/2 oz per 5 gal) for 30 years. I have inspected the bottom of my tanks on several boats and found them clean.

Several things:


a. Opinions in both diesel and aviation industries vary. Some (carbamates such as FPPF) ank Kathon have been implicated in fuel system deposities, because in some circumstances they can precipitae out.


b. As I said earlier, ANY biocide will cause drop out and fouling if used in a severe infestation. I am quite sure that they ALL have this problem. I have tested both and would not consider either "better."


c. The reason FPPF can dissolve water is that its main ingredient is ethylene glycol monobutyl ether. This is used in pain strippers, can be rough on some elastomers, and is NOT recommended by many engine manufacturers.



Just for thought, Biobor is oil soluble, FPPF is water soluble.


These are both good products. Biobor is by far the more common, added to most of the jet fuel pool. The main things are to keep the water out and to clean tanks if it is bad, don't just pour in some additive and pray. It will get worse.
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Old 03-07-2020, 13:12   #19
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

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Originally Posted by svfinlandia View Post
Yes, water can come from leaks, but in my experience most of the water that I find in my 180 gallon S.S. fuel tanks comes from either condensation (if the tanks are not full) or with the fuel itself.
Both of my tanks have a drain valve at the lowest point and before every trip I open the valves and drain about a half pint of fuel from each tank. Depending on how frequently I drain them I find anywhere from a few drops to maybe half an ounce of water.
I once got a “fresh“ load of fuel at a Marina before going out into the ocean and ended up spending the night at anchor 3 miles offshore while I got all of the water (about 3 quarts) out of my fuel tanks.

Al, S/V Finlandia

If you don’t have any kind of leak and get water, it’s coming from the fuel, or of course free water could be pumped in when you buy the fuel. But shouldn’t.
Fuel has water dissolved into it, and it can come out of suspension, and then you have free water. With Jet fuel we had to test the fuel for water content, if it was above a certain PPM it had to be recirculated through a water removing filter until it was below a certain PPM.

All fuel has water in it, you can’t get fuel with no water.

Sulphur when we had it in fuel worked as a biocide, now with ULSD “bugs” are much more of a problem than they used to be, worst case is fuel that sits for extended periods, back up generators and sail its that don’t use much fuel are particularly susceptible.
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Old 03-07-2020, 14:25   #20
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

Speaking of water coming from fuel, I once had fuel delivered by truck to my catamaran. The day she launched.

The fuel was at least 1/4 water and had oily grime in it too. It destroyed both engines. Injectors and injector electronics had to be replaced.

The company delivering the fuel wouldn’t own up to the bad fuel. Said I had all that water and grime in my tanks to begin with. My tanks were translucent, poly, and completely dry tanks as they had just been installed (brand new boat) and never filled with anything.

So... keep that water out.
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Old 03-07-2020, 21:16   #21
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

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Hi all,
Having rebuilt my Westerbeke 40 (Perkins 4-108) and installed a new aluminum tank , I need advice on treating fuel. Specifically, treating to prevent water formation and algae. I,d like a simple program that keeps my tank in good shape. What's the concensus on a proven and practical approach. Of course , I have a new Racor as primary. No polishing loop at this point . Any advice greatly appreciated.
Ensure the filler is watertight.
Initial fill, double dose of quality biocide/fuel treatment, then add at each filling.
End of season, fill to the top with another double dose.
Clear-bowl fuel filter to give you a quick indication of any issues.
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Old 04-07-2020, 04:44   #22
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

Hai. I have a number of fuel measures. 1 make sure That no water can enter through the filling cap. Even when you taking in fuel. 2. Add a little fuel conditioner at regular bases. 3. The air intake of the tank is placed inside the hull, at a point above the fuel intake. The air intake is equipes with i water filter of wic the carbon Is replaced for silicagel what absorbs watervapour. 4. The tank drain is connecties with a small pump. This sucks out the sludge (of there is any) through a seperate filter and the Cleanfuel back to the tank.5. The prefilter is doubled with switch valves
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Old 04-07-2020, 06:14   #23
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

As usual, I knew I would get great advice here! With a below deck full and a new tank looks like I am off to a good start. Stabil and a low dose of biocide consistently whenever I take on fuel seems to be the consensus.
Any thoughts about conditioners? my local Napa suggested an additive (Howe’s) at every fill up that purported to increase lubrication for the top end. His rationale was new diesel formulations have become more likely to reduce lubricity to the valve train. It’s not a cost factor, as one bottle would last a season or two, but somewhere last summer I did pickup some unknown contaminant and I wondered if that product-which I had begun adopting, was perhaps involved.
Anyone use an additive to improve the lubrication of the stock oils we use(in my case, straight 30 weight non detergent)?
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Old 04-07-2020, 06:16   #24
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

I use Biobor and probably over-treat. I add it at every fill or top-up. We burn about 500 gallons a season in our sailboat since we put on a lot of miles migrating the East Coast, and we are a motor-sailer. Sailing performance is lackluster in regards to speed. When trying ro make 60+ miles a day plodding along @ 4.5-5 knots really plays havoc with trying to make the planned destination that day. So we motorsail a lot.

We are on the move for a couple of months then may sit for a couple of months in one general area not moving very far and burning very little fuel comparitively. When moving we burn about 5-10 gallons a day. Just to be certain, I treat heavily since the stuff is relatively cheap. I think the bottle says it treats 1280 gallons and I go through about one bottle a year, so I am using about twice as much since I treat the whole tank not just what I added when I fill up.

When we pump out the septic I'll fill the tank as many fuel docks discount or give a free pumpout with fuel purchase so we are often adding only 20-30 gallons to a 60-ish gallon in-keel tank and adding about 3/4 ounce of biobor. Better safe than sorry. I don't think using too much will cause any issues. We are talking PPM here

I drain out my racor bowl fairly often and use an old plastic jar so I can visually inspect it. Often I'll leave the sealed bottle out in the dodger pocket in the sun, forgetting about it until the next oil change when I'll add the suspect fuel to my drain oil to dispose if it. Sometimes after a only a few weeks in the sun the drain fuel will start growing algae, even though I regularly treat the fuel, and over-treat it at that. So I guess the biocides don't last forever in difficult situations like direct sunlight. In those cases I don't contaminate the drain oil but will soak it up with an oil diaper cloth and dispose of that separately. Many shops heat with drain oil so adding awful bloomed diesel to the oil isn't right. But it isnt a big deal adding cleanish drain diesel to it.
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Old 04-07-2020, 06:31   #25
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

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To expand on biocides they are a pesticide, and like most pesticides they are best used as preventatives. They will kill the bugs after you have an infestation, but then you have a tank full of dead bugs to deal with, it’s best to kill them before they grow and form colonies,
Been there! This season, in the Virgin Islands, my starboard tank had issues. Why only starboard? I don't know except that is always the tank I fill first; maybe water in a hose is flushed into that tank and by the time I fill the port, it is clean fuel??

At any rate I had a plugged filter stop the starboard engine. Spoke to several of our boat buddies that have been sailing many years longer than I have and they all recommended several different biocides. I went with what I could find in the islands and BAM! Did the trick but now I had a tank full of little dead bodies. I left the east end of St. Thomas for a 6 or 7 hour run to Puerto Rico and the engine made it 4 hours before shutting down again. I was motor sailing in 4/5 kts of wind, yeah, I know all about schedules but we were set to leave with the Salty Dawgs back to the US..

I had the tank pumped out and vacuumed in Puerto Del Rey Marina and simply could not believe the amount of slime and gunk suctioned out. I realized cleaning was the only solution. I would have gone thru 100 Racor filters trying to keep the engine running.

Keep your tanks clean with a preventative, don't try to fix it after it is too late as it won't happen. Once it is bad you will have to remove the fuel, clean the tank and start all over..
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Old 04-07-2020, 06:41   #26
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

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Originally Posted by BlackHeron View Post
I use Biobor and probably over-treat. I add it at every fill or top-up. We burn about 500 gallons a season in our sailboat since we put on a lot of miles migrating the East Coast, and we are a motor-sailer. Sailing performance is lackluster in regards to speed. When trying ro make 60+ miles a day plodding along @ 4.5-5 knots really plays havoc with trying to make the planned destination that day. So we motorsail a lot.

We are on the move for a couple of months then may sit for a couple of months in one general area not moving very far and burning very little fuel comparitively. When moving we burn about 5-10 gallons a day. Just to be certain, I treat heavily since the stuff is relatively cheap. I think the bottle says it treats 1280 gallons and I go through about one bottle a year, so I am using about twice as much since I treat the whole tank not just what I added when I fill up.

When we pump out the septic I'll fill the tank as many fuel docks discount or give a free pumpout with fuel purchase so we are often adding only 20-30 gallons to a 60-ish gallon in-keel tank and adding about 3/4 ounce of biobor. Better safe than sorry. I don't think using too much will cause any issues. We are talking PPM here

I drain out my racor bowl fairly often and use an old plastic jar so I can visually inspect it. Often I'll leave the sealed bottle out in the dodger pocket in the sun, forgetting about it until the next oil change when I'll add the suspect fuel to my drain oil to dispose if it. Sometimes after a only a few weeks in the sun the drain fuel will start growing algae, even though I regularly treat the fuel, and over-treat it at that. So I guess the biocides don't last forever in difficult situations like direct sunlight. In those cases I don't contaminate the drain oil but will soak it up with an oil diaper cloth and dispose of that separately. Many shops heat with drain oil so adding awful bloomed diesel to the oil isn't right. But it isnt a big deal adding cleanish drain diesel to it.
If it is actually algae, and frankly I’m not familiar with algae growth in fuel, but Bio-bor won’t prevent algae I don’t think, it’s a pesticide not a herbicide.
Normally in fuel tanks you can’t get algae to grow as there is no light source.
I don’t think over treating will hurt anything, except it’s wasting a little money.
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Old 04-07-2020, 16:34   #27
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

That might explain things. We have an encapsulated fiberglass tank built into the keel. It's a Hallberg-Rassy thing on their older boats. Fuel is always at keel temperature which is basically water temperature so there isn't much of a temperature delta and no sunlight. But the tank is a real PITA to access so keeping the fuel clean is even more of a priority.
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Old 20-07-2020, 07:45   #28
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

Let your Racor and primary filters do the work. Do not use biocide. There are some engine additives but you don't need very much.
If the fuel is suspect pump it out and recycle. If the tank becomes suspect clean it.
Don't add fuel from the bottom of a container.
Not that complicated.
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Old 20-07-2020, 07:47   #29
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

Wonderful to hear your Westerbeke 40 is in running condition. Mine is going strong after 50 years.
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Old 20-07-2020, 09:01   #30
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Re: Need Advice on Fuel Treatment Regimine

A fixed regime on what to throw in the tank? It doesn’t work like that.

First question should be: is the tank currently clean? If not, have it cleaned first.

Second question: is the fuel currently in the tank clean? If not, do shock treatment of both Biobor and Startron, then pump all fuel through a filter into jerrycans, drums; clean tank, replace filters and pump it through the filter back again.

Third question: what kind of fuel is used? If bio-diesel then try to get real diesel or even premium one with ValveTec etc. If that is not possible then you need to use fuel treatments (maintenance dosis Startron) whenever fuel lasts more than a month or so.

4: If real diesel is used and it lasts less than a year, use nothing. If it lasts longer than a year, use Startron. Whenever you suspect something is going on (bad fuel), add maintenance dosis of Biobor to the Startron.
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