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6 comments

What is Diesel Fuel Algae?

Posted March 23, 2010 11:10 AM by algaex

Algae are a life form found in water, similar to algae growing in an aquarium. However, for years, people have been referring to tank sludge and to the jelly, slime and other contaminants found in fuel filters as "algae". The colloquialism "diesel fuel algae" is widely used and understood. However, there is no relationship between the "algae" growing in your aquarium and the sludge "growing" (forming) in your fuel tank and showing up on your filter elements.

Three Areas of Concern

There are three basic areas of concern in fuels and oil. They are: 1. water 2. in-organic debris (sand, dust, rust, etc.) and 3. organic debris (fuel breakdown products and waste products of fuel deterioration and re-polymerization). The organic debris represents more than 90% of all the contaminants found in fuels and oil. It is this organic debris, the sludgy, slimy, acidic material that people refer to as "diesel fuel algae". It could also be called polymer, tar or wax and asphalt.

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Guru
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#1

Re: What is Diesel Fuel Algae?

03/24/2010 6:01 AM

I question the whole concept here.

No doubt sludge, tar, polymers, grit, etc. might contaminate your fuel. And also water. From what I have heard before, microorganisms such as actual algae can grow in the water, perhaps feeding off the fuel at the fuel/water interface. They, like other debris, can be filtered out, but they tend to clog filters rapidly. (Centrifuges too.) Another approach is a biocide, such as Biobor®, a boron-containing additive that (at least supposedly) kills off the algae.

If so, pretending that algae is something else may be inadvisable.

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Active Contributor

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: What is Diesel Fuel Algae?

03/24/2010 7:44 AM

The important thing is that no matter you clean, polish or conditioning the diesel , anyway diesel fuel degradate naturally , because diesel is an organic compound .

Also the handling and transportation of diesel expose it to many conditions of moisture and polutions that accelerate degradation and re-grown of Algae and othe microorganisms.

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#3
In reply to #1

Re: What is Diesel Fuel Algae?

03/24/2010 9:54 AM

A lot of moisture develops in Diesel storage tanks so there is a lot of water present and that is where the algae grow.

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#4
In reply to #3

Re: What is Diesel Fuel Algae?

03/25/2010 7:01 PM

The commonly experienced black sludge, algae, slime, yuck found in automotive diesel tanks is caused by bacteria that live in the interface between water and the diesel. The 'bugs' eat the diesel, and excrete waste products, die, etc.

This is one reason it is important to keep water out of diesel tanks. It is also a very good practice to periodically (every 6 mo?) treat the tank with biocide/water remover. Consumer products can be found at any decent auto parts store or truck-stop. Once a fuel system gets significantly 'infested', it is usually cost effective to drain and remove the tank for very thorough cleaning and then filters, etc--and then keep it clean and dry.

The crud will plug fuel injector tip passages (some of which are too small to see without magnifying lens. )

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#5
In reply to #4

Re: What is Diesel Fuel Algae?

03/26/2010 9:40 AM

Maybe that explains why cars with diesel engines run good at first but after a few years they seem to lose a lot of power. My Dad is a pretty good mechanic but I don't think he even made that connection.

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#6

Re: What is Diesel Fuel Algae?

05/06/2010 12:50 PM

Kudos to Drew for pointing out the pseudo-science scammy nature of these infomercials and for speaking for the contributing community here, who do not want to be associated with, let alone be seen as actively promoting (by offering many pages of blog space) fuel line magnets, perpetual motion machines, HHO devices, etc.

CR4 should shut down all these "blogs" by AlgaeX.

With this post (and by shutting down one of these threads) Moose has taken a good first step. CR4 might try taking the high road, as reflected in some of the the more ethical magazines, where editorial and advertising departments are not one and the same. Yes, GS is all about making money, but throwing ethics out the window, can, in fact, reduce profits. (Read Collins's Good to Great)

Although Moose has claimed, in another of these threads, that the posts by "member" AlgaeX do not directly advertise their fuel line magnets, the photo above certainly seems to do just that. There's the fuel line magnet (labeled "Magnetic Fuel Conditioner") "Algae-X appears twice in huge letters, the phone number is there, etc.

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