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Bio diesel in Fiat 2.8 JTD, will it work?


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Hi guys, speaking to someone today about the price of fuel, he asked me why I don't use Bio diesel, to be honest I never thought of it. He says a local supplier sells it for £1.06 a litre with tax and another guy sells it for 95 p but not sure about the tax implications ;) he said that a couple fuel pumps work better than others, one a Bosch, the other I cant remember. Another quick search seems to indicate the Ducato 2.8 JTD works ok but I thought I would open it up to the experts.
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Guest peter
You've got a fancy A class van and you thinking of using an unknown fuel of unknown origin to save a few pence a ltr. I personally wouldn't risk it for a cuuple of quid a tankfull.
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Actually Peter, a quick calculation suggests there might be £25 per tank to be saved here.....


Our experience with Bio Diesel is limited to repairs carried out on a customer's vans that he had been mixing his own fuel for; with many unhappy results. Peugeot 2.0Hdi was allegedly compatible with up to 80% mix and clearly was not happy. His LDV vans with Transit 2.4 engines needed new pumps and injectors too.


Some of this could be due to their effectiveness at mixing their own fuel and some may be because the fuel is a sticky mess generally; I don't know.


Can you buy Bio Diesel from a named brand forecourt alongside normal fuels?


If you can, and the fuel maker has a website where you can find out which vehicles are compatible with it then I would give it a whirl. They would have to take some responsibility if it all went wrong, but that is little comfort when you are broken down in the middle of the night in the middle of nowhere.


From a purely technical point of view; the 2.8JTD should be ok with a mixture of bio fuel and diesel because the pumps are known to be pretty tough and the injectors are not known for any faults other than excessive back leak which makes the van difficult to start. They are normally quite easy to remove if something goes wrong too, as are the high pressure pumps. The injectors can be bought for less than £150 each and the pump is about £375 these days. I don't know about the lift pump in the fuel tank; how that would be affected is a mystery. In any case, if you had any problems, they could probably be fixed with a good quality fuel injection system cleaner being added.


I reckon that if you were doing 10,000 miles a year or thereabouts the risk versus reward would be worth a go. I would not go any higher than 80% bio to regular and would run a full tank of regular every 4th fill.


In fact, I am going to do it on one of our spare vans.


Whether we like it or not, if the price of fuel keeps increasing we will not only have to explore alternatives for ourselves but we might have to worry more about our tanks being drained by thieves. You might have a locking fuel cap and anti-siphon valves but all it takes is a hole drilled under your tank!


If that does not make you want to fill it with something cheaper I don't know what will!





Just done some checks and it seems that vehicles built after 2004 should not use more than 50% bio diesel. This clearly needs further investigation. Does it come out of the pump 50/50 mixed or do you have to buy it 100% and mix it with regular 50/50?



No wonder my customer got into a mess!

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