Microbes and Water: The Enemies of Stored Diesel Fuel

Above ground fuel tank holding diesel fuelDiesel fuel can last up to a year in its tank without problems. This stability can be a benefit to farmers or to residents in remote areas who need accessible fuel in long-term storage. In fact, you can even extend the life of diesel fuel up to five years when you treat it with a fuel stabilizer.

Prevent Condensation

Get rid of water contaminants by using products that either emulsify or demulsify it. Of course, prevention is better than cure. Keep diesel fuel safe from water by keeping your diesel tanks full. Lack of air space inside the tank discourages condensation, which can lead to the formation of water.

Kill the Microbes

You can still save your diesel fuel tank contaminated with microbes by treating the fuel with a biocide. Prevent microbes from forming in the first place by applying the biocide whenever you place diesel fuel in a long-term storage. Diesel fuel stabilizer already acts like biocides, so you can simply use such products unless you want actual biocides.

Degradation Agents

In spite of the stability of diesel fuel, two elements — microbes and water — can still affect its quality. Both of them can cause degradation in diesel, leaving you with darkened fuel that has sludges, gums, and varnishes. Water is the more serious enemy though, as its presence can encourage the growth of microbes.

Signs of Contamination

When you fill your vehicle or tractor with the water-contaminated diesel, you will experience engine problems that indicate the presence of water. The engine may cut out suddenly, and black or white smoke may come out from your engine.

Now that you know how to keep your diesel fuel safe, you can better store the fuel and ensure its long-term storage. You will be glad five years from now that you did all you can to make your fuel last.