When summertime temperatures are on the rise in the Pacific Northwest, that means preventative maintenance and care can be needed to prevent heat-related problems in equipment. One such problem: Hot temperatures can cause sludge, fungal substance or other contaminants to build up in your fuel tank and damage your machine.
Protect Your Diesel Fuel Tank From Heat-Related Problems:
Don’t Add Fuel To A Hot Tank
Adding cool or room temperature diesel fuel to an already hot tank can cause condensation to form and get water in the tank. When water gets into your fuel tank, “diesel algae” can form. This substance is not technically algae, and is actually a bacterial fungus that resembles the algae you’d see at the beach. But buildups of this fungus can damage your fuel tank and render your fuel supply worthless. Wait until your tank has cooled off to add fuel.
Run Your Machine Regularly
When left dormant for long stretches of time in the heat, diesel fuel can start to break down. Fuel breakdowns can result in sludge or sediment clogging your fueling system. Nobody wants to start their machine for the first time in a while, only to discover that its fuel has become corrosive. Set a schedule to regularly run machines that aren’t in your regular operating rotation.
Let Your Machine Idle For Several Minutes Before Shutting Down
After you’ve operated your machine during a summer day, chances are high it’s gotten pretty hot. But shutting off without a cool-down period can damage your fuel injectors, and impair your machine’s operation. Allow 5-10 minutes of idling to cool down your machine after each use.
One last piece of advice: When in doubt about your fuel tank or supply, consult with your fuel provider. Fueling specialists should be able to diagnose an issue that’s related to the heat, and provide recommendations or products to keep your fuel tanks in peak shape.