What You Need to Know About Storing Diesel Fuel

When storing diesel fuel there are some important aspects you need to be aware of to ensure the safety and reliability of your generator.

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about storing and using diesel to run your generator:

How long can diesel be stored?

Over time, diesel begins to become contaminated and start to degrade. Because of this, diesel typically lasts for 6-12 months without treatment.

How does diesel become contaminated?

There are three main factors that contribute to diesel contamination:

  • Water – when diesel is exposed to water, it causes the diesel to break down, and can encourage the growth of bacteria.
  • Bacteria – bacteria produce acids that further degrade diesel, which can clog filters, restrict the flow of the fuel and cause engine failure.
  • Oxidation – When diesel is exposed to oxygen, it causes sediment to form in the diesel, which can cause irreparable damage to your generator.
Can you prolong the shelf life of diesel?

There are diesel fuel treatments available to help and prevent build-up of diesel contaminants. It is important to use treatments that are made specifically for use with diesel.

Fuel polishing is a process that purifies your diesel by capturing water, bacteria, and sediment in the filter system so that you don’t need to replace your unused fuel. As part of the fuel polishing process, your fuel supply is tested to determine the quality of your fuel, and the treatment it requires.

Should I store my diesel in a fuel tank?

Investing in an external fuel tank for your diesel fuel helps to lower your long-term costs as your fuel will be stored in the optimal conditions for preventing contamination and the quality will last longer.

Are there alternative fuel options for diesel?

Yes – Cummins generator sets are approved for use with hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) when used in standby applications.

HVO fuel is perfect for long-term fuel storage and can be stored for up to 10 years. The hydrogenation process removes oxygen from the fuel so there is a significantly reduced risk of degradation or oxidation. HVO does not absorb water so it does not provide an environment where bacteria can grow. This also removes the need for regular fuel testing and maintenance programs to remove water.

You can view the full range of Cummins generators available here.

Looking for a fuel solution? Shanahan Power carries out fuel testing and treatment services and we have a range of fuel tanks available to order. Our team is on hand to offer advice on the best solution for your business – contact us to find out more!