5 Ways To Keep Your Diesel Fuel From Gelling In The Winter

Posted on: 19 November 2015

A lot of people choose to buy trucks or cars that run on diesel fuel instead of gas.  One reason is that if you drive a diesel vehicle, you can get better fuel efficiency than a comparable vehicle that is powered by gasoline. Diesel fuel has more energy to it than gasoline does, which is what gives it that extra efficiency. One problem that diesel does have is that in cold weather it starts to gel. That means it gets thicker, and can nearly solidify. That keeps it from getting to your engine so it will start. However, there are a few things that you can do to make sure that your fuel won't gel in the cold weather. 

Get Winter Diesel

The easiest way to make sure that your diesel fuel doesn't gel inside your car is to get winter diesel. Winter diesel is a mix of diesel #1 and #2. D2 is the one that is more likely to gel because it has a higher paraffin percentage than D1 does. Paraffin is added to the diesel fuel as a lubricating agent. However, it's that same paraffin that can boost diesel's propensity to gel. D1 has less paraffin than D2 does, so cutting the D2 with D1 can lessen the risk of your fuel gelling. 

Add Some Kerosene

If you can get some winter diesel, another option is to add a small amount of kerosene to your diesel. That will give you the same benefit of using winter diesel because it thins out the paraffin without getting rid of the ability of the diesel to start and run your car. 

Garage Your Car

Keeping your car in a garage if at all possible is another way to make sure that the diesel doesn't gel. Even if your garage isn't heated, it will be somewhat warmer than outside, especially if it's attached to your house. The heat from your house will spread into the garage and should help keep the fuel from gelling. 

Get a Block Heater

A block heater is a special heater that you can plug into your car. This keeps the guts of your car nice and warm without your car running. A warm engine and warm fuel mean that your engine will start in the morning. 

If you choose to use a diesel vehicle, knowing how to prevent your fuel from gelling is important so your car can run properly in the winter.