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  #1  
Old 11 Sep 2007
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Red Diesel??

We are off to mori later this year and I am thinking of starting off with the aux fuel tanks full of red diesel for the run down through Spain / Morroco as I have a fair bit that didnt cost me anything!!

Can any body advise me of the legality of this, especially the Spanish bit or should I save it for my boat!??
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  #2  
Old 11 Sep 2007
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Red

What do you think the legality is of running Red especially in a European country?? If you do, make sure it has been well filtered due to the amount of water often found in it usually from condensation when it's been stored in barrels, I would only ever consider using Red in an older engine and certainly not in one of the more modern vehicles with electric gizmos and mega expensive pumps, why not go the 'whole hog' and use heating oil (kerosene) mixed with some cheap veggie oil? have tried both and veggie makes the vehicle run quite smooth, where as the heating oil makes for a fair bit of vibration, I often experiment with various fuel types in an offroad vehicle on private land.
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Old 23 Sep 2007
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Smile Red

Hi, red diesel is ordinary diesel with dye in it, as used in agricultural tractors, and those are as sophisticated as anything. It is also used for heating oil, but comes from the same tanks (I drive a fuel tanker)
It's only illegal if you get caught.
Bruce
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  #4  
Old 23 Sep 2007
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Agree with Bruce - only illegal if you get caught.
But the question was - is it an offence outside UK? I really have no idea but doubt it.

Beware though that some ferry/tunnel operators do not permit any (or more than 5 litres) of fuel to be carried fuel cans etc - aux tanks?. Again if you get caught!

Also, as an aside, I am not aware of diesel checks taking place in UK on 'private' cars, although I have seen them on commercial vehicles.
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Old 23 Sep 2007
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Apparently dye can be removed by :

A--a small amount of sulphuric acid [ then neutralise with sodium hydoxide ]

B-- filter through cat litter or oil soaker granules

C-- filter through bread

I haven't tried any of the above but it might be an interesting exercise .It's not worth doing in Canada where fuel prices and taxation are lower .

When I was in the UK it was common to run military [ underseat] tanks on Land Rovers .Customs and Excise would dip the standard tank which was always full of white diesel and be unaware of the red diesel in the military tank .
Very often the bastards used to drive into farmyards completely unannounced and dip the tanks of any vehicles there .

I always ran petrol Landies but I would never stop them from dipping my tank if they absolutely insisted - ha ha .
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Old 23 Sep 2007
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I do not know about Spain, but it definitely is illegal to use red diesel in road vehicles in FRance. Here it is sold as heating oil sadly, as I need kerosene for the rayburn
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Old 23 Sep 2007
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Exclamation

Hi
As far as i know it is still illegal to run red diesel in spain, it was when i ran a truck out there in the 80's and 90's. And the fines are high.
Remember when you run red diesel it leaves a dye stain in your tank, this can be picked up if ever the customs and excise dip your tank back in the UK,and a heavy fine will follow. Hope this is of some help Skip
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Old 23 Sep 2007
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I've had tractor pumps ,tanks ,filter housings ,you name it , apart for maintenance and have never ,ever, seen any red dye residue and they have always been used with red diesel .
However Customs and Excise do have extremely sensitive equipment that can detect the merest trace of colour ,so if you have used red in the recent past and are now using white they might be able to pick it up .
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Old 24 Sep 2007
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The customs testing gear is very sensitive. I personally know farmer that put 2 gallons of red in his LR to get him to the garage. Got done about 3 months later, they wouldn't accept his story.

One thing some people seem to be getting wrong though, kerosene is very different to diesel.
Kero is a 27 second heavy oil and diesel is 35 second. Also kero has no lubricating agents in it, this will cause a mechanical pump to seize unless you mix some lube agent in it. 20W50 mineral will do the trick. But you then need to be careful if dipped because it can be detected by measuring its specific gravity.
Red diesel is not quite the same as the white pump DERV. For starters it still smells like DERV as it is not low sulphur which means it's better because it has a higher cetane rating, that means you get a bigger bang from the same amount.

But back to the original question, it is only illegal if you get caught. And unless you get a real jobsworth here in the UK it is possible to negotiate and pay the back duty. During the fuel protesting here a few years ago a lot of haulage firms were running red with an exemption from the customs and paying the duty after. I also heard about a lorry driver that filled his truck at a gas station with red by mistake, should have been putting it in the tank for the fridge unit. His boss immediately contacted customs, they faxed an exemption and the driver went on his way.
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Old 24 Sep 2007
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Just a comment

Nice post Skorpion with a lot of useful facts; there are a multitude of websites nowadays discussing and advising on biodiesel fuels - a fascinating subject for future transportation.
I would very much like to see a diesel bike on the road, asap, that can run on whatever fuel is the cheapest and most fuel efficient. I am not much interested in all that green stuff as such, but I sure am interested in my wallet getting thinner.

Well second comment actually; about 3 times now it has been said that it is only illegal if you get caught. The same could be said for speeding and for murder and just about every other statute on the books.
As Skorpion's post indicates, intent (or perceived intent) is everything.
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Old 30 Sep 2007
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It might be illegal to use Red diesel but it is not illegal to use Veg oil why not just put that through.
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Old 1 Oct 2007
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Absolutely spot on Brian E, I allowed myself to get side tracked. A DERV engine that is fueled by a mechanical pump will run happily on a 75% + mix. But whatever you do, don't put it anywhere near a DERV engine with modern electronic injection. It'll cook and gel in the fuel lines.
Oh, and I do believe that there is an exemption on duty for people using less than 2000 litres of veg oil as fuel.
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Old 1 Oct 2007
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Veg oil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skorpion660 View Post
Absolutely spot on Brian E, I allowed myself to get side tracked. A DERV engine that is fueled by a mechanical pump will run happily on a 75% + mix. But whatever you do, don't put it anywhere near a DERV engine with modern electronic injection. It'll cook and gel in the fuel lines.
Oh, and I do believe that there is an exemption on duty for people using less than 2000 litres of veg oil as fuel.
Yes, there is another thread somewhere in here that shows the change of legislation that was made in the UK to allow the use of veg oils as a fuel, free of tax; this is one heck of a change from a short time ago, when the whole of a town in S Wales was stinking of "chip fat" from the fish and chip shops!
I find a problem now is the lack of clear identification of which diesel vehicles can run on this stuff; you have now fingered the reason I guess Skorpion660.
Also, I have heard of various % mixes being recommended for different cars and by different manufacturers- is this correct?
Also (how many alsos can I have?), there are a lot of different terminologies in use for the different types of refined and sources of veg oil; are they all "equal" so to speak?

All in all, it is still quite a confusing subject.
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Old 2 Oct 2007
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It's not too bad. If the engine is pre electronic injection you can go as high as 100% veg oil, but you'll need to run tank and line heaters in colder climates.

If the engine is the more modern electronic injection type most will run on a 5% blend, anymore than that and you run the risk of gelling. Landrover state in the owners manual for the TD5 engines no bio mix at all.

Answer, buy a LR with the 300 series engine. I can get more info, I'm sure there is a guy in the off road club running very high levels of veg oil in a Disco.

I'll PM you Dave

Last edited by Skorpion660; 2 Oct 2007 at 19:10. Reason: addition
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Old 9 Oct 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skorpion660 View Post
Oh, and I do believe that there is an exemption on duty for people using less than 2000 litres of veg oil as fuel.

I think the exeption includes upto 2500 litres a year of veg oil as long as you keep adequate records.
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