Prevent Fuel Waxing This Winter

With February in full swing, it may be time to start thinking about the cold flow capability of your fuel.

If you’re in agriculture, industry, or haulage, or supplying customers who are, you likely already know that cold weather waxing can turn your fuel supply into an active liability. What ought to be the lifeblood of your business is instead clogging engines, causing choking and stop-starting, and keeping some vehicles from starting up at all. Progress on the roads, in the fields, or with the excavator comes to a dead stop as you struggle to negotiate with the fact that you’ve just paid a significant outlay for fuel that the cold weather has made nearly unusable.

Red diesel is especially at risk from cold weather. Thanks to the mixed quality of what’s on offer in the modern market, waxing points in off-road diesel are sneaking higher every year. That means it’s not just good sense to consider an anti-wax solution: it might actually be necessary for off-road operators to do so if they don’t want to lose a significant chunk of their winter profits to unusable fuel and lost productivity.

For distributors, too, the benefits are obvious. Treated fuel offers your customers a necessary operational safeguard, and the added costs are very minimal, especially when compared to the massive potential for profit. An anti-waxing component gives your fuel the winning edge, elevating it to the quality of a premium product while keeping it at a standard product’s price point. It’s something your customers need, and that you can benefit from. Ultimately, it ends up being a winning proposition for both parties.

How Waxing Happens

All diesel fuel contains some paraffin. This is desirable and necessary: the high cetane content of paraffin makes for more efficient burning during normal use, resulting in better mileage and more even performance. When temperatures drop, however, paraffin freezes, forming stiff crystals of wax that block the fuel line, clog the combustion process, cause choking and stop-starting, and ultimately starve the engine of fuel entirely – leading to breakdowns and dead stops in the middle of what should have been a profitable day’s work.

Once fuel waxing has occurred, it can’t easily be reversed. That means waxed fuel stays waxed, and is effectively unusable. And it doesn’t just occur in vehicle tanks: if storage conditions are cold enough, fuel in storage tanks suffers from waxing too. Above-ground storage is especially vulnerable, and more so if it’s not fitted with insulation.

The result of waxing in the storage tank is blocked offtake lines, a wax sediment forming on the tank bottom – and potentially thousands of pounds’ worth of effectively unusable fuel. For most off-road operators, it’s a nightmare scenario.

How Syntec4 Wax Killa Treats Itwax-killa-transparent-png

Syntec4 Wax Killa is a specialised detergent that prevents paraffin from waxing at low temperatures by making sure the paraffin in diesel fuel stays separate, and fluid, no matter how cold it gets. It can be added to fuel in storage or in the vehicle tank, and works at its full efficiency with all types of diesel fuel, no matter their bio content.

For even better performance, operators can use Wax Killa’s sister product Glacier Extreme – a cetane-improving fuel treatment that brings off-road diesel up to a premium road quality specification. Glacier Extreme has all the properties of Wax Killa included in its formula, and also boasts water controlling, lubrication improving, and fuel life extending properties. For working hard in cold weather, it’s hard to find a better assistant.

Whether you choose to use Syntec4 products or not, though, it’s always worth considering the dangers of fuel waxing, and the profit opportunities that come with tackling the problem head-on.

Whether it means more work getting done on time, a healthy trade in additised fuel, or protection against losses on fuel you can’t use, the benefits are varied. The potential for better business (and thicker margins) is there – it’s just waiting for industry professionals to reach out and grab it.

Caitlin Conaghan

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