Did you know that a diesel fuel additive can help your truck or car run smoother and even improve its performance?
Modern diesel engines provide an excellent blend of performance and fuel economy, which makes them popular among drivers. However, the complex and sensitive technology behind this makes them quite demanding when it comes to both maintenance and fuel quality.
While maintenance comes down to following manufacturers’ guidelines, a fuel additive will ensure the fuel in your car is up to the task. In this article, we will go through a selection of the best diesel fuel additives and see what they can offer.
Chemtech is an Australian company that offers a range of additives and treatment products designed with the harshest conditions in mind. One such product is a Diesel Power fuel treatment, which uses the latest technology and ensures safe use in common-rail diesel engines. This additive offers several upsides, and being a superb injector cleaner is one of them.
Using a special formula, it will remove even the most stubborn deposits from injector nozzles and keep them clean afterward. And it also does a good job inside the tank, where it will improve diesel fuel stability and prevent its deterioration. As an additional upside, this additive will eliminate water traces while also inhibiting algae and bacteria growth. This will not only help improve engine performance but will also reduce exhaust emissions.
- Removes stubborn deposits from injector nozzles and keeps them clean
- Slows down fuel deterioration by preventing oxidation
- Eliminates water traces by dissolving solid fuel-water emulsion
- Inhibits algae and bacteria growth
- Improves engine performance and reduces exhaust emission
- 300 ml treats up to 300 litres.
- Compatible with all modern diesel engines
- Very good at cleaning the injectors
- Helps preserving the quality of fuel inside the tank
- Pouring in from the canister can be awkward and cause splashing
Red Line is a US-based company, best known for its synthetic oils and additives that focus on racing and performance vehicles. Being in this industry for over 40 years, they have gained extensive experience in machinery that runs under extreme conditions. And their 85-Plus Diesel Fuel Additive is a product that follows this idea, as it will improve engine performance.
It will stabilize the fuel and boost its Cetane value while also improving performance and keeping the fuel system clean. Still, the ability to lower the sulfur ratio within any batch of fuel is the biggest advantage this treatment product offers. This may be very helpful for drivers who are having a hard time finding a gas station that sells premium-quality fuel.
- Safe to use in all diesel engines
- Active catalyst formula, which lowers sulfur ratio
- Contains a Cetane booster, which ensures faster ignition and improves efficiency
- Lubricates and reduces friction within the fuel system and upper cylinder.
- Improves fuel stability at high temperatures
- A powerful detergent formula will keep injectors clean
- There is a winterised version available, which reduces pour point by 25°C
- Improves fuel quality and lowers its sulfur ratio
- Very stable at high temperatures
- A bit more expensive
Sta-bil is another Australian company, with a range of specialised treatments aimed at fuel stabilisation and storage protection. They will ensure reliable and long-lasting protection for anything from cars and trucks to boats or jet-skis.
One of their most popular products is this Diesel Fuel Stabiliser, which offers several benefits. For a start, it will help stabilise the fuel inside a tank and keep it fresh for up to two years. An unique chemical formula that stops the oxidation process and prevents fuel degradation is what makes this possible.
In addition, this additive will remove any traces of water, which makes conditions inside the tank unsuitable for corrosion or algae development. With all things considered, Sta-bil Diesel Fuel Stabiliser is an excellent product for all vehicles that only see seasonal usage. This can be anything from farm equipment or heavy-machinery to collector cars and RVs.
- Prevents fuel degradation and stops the oxidation process
- Keeps the fuel inside a thank fresh for up to two years
- Remove water traces and prevents corrosion and algae development
- Suitable for use in all diesel engines
- Should be used at every fill-up
- Keeps fuel stable and free of algae for a long period
- Ideal for vehicles that are in seasonal usage
- There is no winterised version available
Lucas Oil is another name in the industry with a respectable heritage and a wide range of lubricants and additives. One of their products is this Cetane Power Booster, which enhances fuel properties and ensures several important benefits. By increasing Cetane values and allowing better combustion, it will ensure better engine performance while also improving fuel economy.
This treatment also works as a cleaner, as it removes deposits inside the injector and on its nozzle. Effective lubricants will protect the high-pressure fuel pump under heavy loads, which may result in high temperatures inside it and cause damage. These features make Lucas Cetane Power Booster the perfect diesel fuel supplement for all engines that operate in extreme conditions. This can be anything from trucks that are pulling heavy loads to diesel vehicles tuned for racing applications.
- Increases Cetane value by 6 numbers
- Ensures better performance and improves fuel economy
- Prevents formation of deposits inside injectors and on their nozzles
- Lubricates the high-pressure fuel pump
- Reduces wear under extreme running conditions
- Improves combustion
- Protects sensitive common-rail components
- Enables better diesel engine performance
- No fuel stabilization
- There is no winterised version available
While most products on the list offer a blend of different features, this fuel treatment Nulon is a bit more specialised. Modern diesel engines have several systems, such as EGR and DPF, whose function is to lower down the exhaust emissions. Things like unfavorable driving conditions or usage of low-quality fuel can clog up these systems, which cause running issues. The combustion process will activate this additive, allowing it to remove soot and carbon build-ups within the exhaust and corresponding systems.
As an additional benefit, it will also remove any carbon deposits found within turbochargers and waste-gates. Although this product doesn’t offer any improvements to the fuel itself, it will help free up injector nozzles from any deposits. This makes it ideal for all cars and trucks that spend a lot of time in stop-and-go traffic or travelling short distances.
- Dissolves stubborn carbon build-ups within diesel exhaust system
- Removes soot from within turbochargers and waste-gates
- Helps activate Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) regeneration process
- Removes any deposits on injector nozzles and keeps them clean
- Excellent for removing soot and carbon from exhaust system
- Restores proper turbocharger and EGR system operation
- Helps activate DPF regeneration
- This product has no impact on fuel quality
Diesel Fuel Additives Buying Guide
What are the upsides?
Many drivers may ask themselves if their diesel engine needs a fuel additive, or which one to use.
Some benefits these products might offer range from increased reliability and improved engine performance to reduced exhaust emissions.
As an additional upside, a treatment product like this will also provide additional protection to the engine and fuel system components. This will not only make the vehicle more economical, but it may also have a positive impact on its longevity.
However, with so many diesel fuel additives available on the market, finding the right one is not a straightforward job. There are several key factors to consider when deciding on which one to choose, which makes selection easier.
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Different types of Diesel fuel additives?
For a start, it is important to know there are several additive types, with each of them serving a different purpose.
- Fuel stabilizers prevent degradation, which happens because of oxidation and chemical breakdown during storage or inside the fuel tank.
- Corrosion inhibitors eliminate water vapors and stop the corresponding salt crystallization from happening, as it would cause rust if left unchecked.
- Cetane boosters will make the combustion process faster, which has a positive impact on both engine efficiency and exhaust emissions.
- Fuel injector cleaners will dissolve any carbon deposits from injector nozzles and other diesel engine components, which may boost throttle response and improve cold starts.
- Anti-gel additives is a necessity for drivers in cold areas, as it prevents the fuel inside the filter from turning into wax.
Most modern diesel fuel additives will do several of these things, which makes them both practical and easy to use. However, just like any other similar products, these treatments have their limitations and can’t solve all fuel system issues a diesel engine might have.
Other key features
Regardless of their purpose, all fuel additives have to fulfill several requirements that will ensure their safe and reliable application.
The compatibility with all engine and drive-train components inside the vehicle is one of the key features to look for. Modern common-rail engines are extremely sensitive to this, as using unsuitable fuel additives could damage the high-pressure fuel pump and injectors.
Ensuring the fuel additive doesn’t rely on alcohol or other similar chemicals to achieve sufficient cleaning capabilities is another crucial step. Despite being quite good at removing dirt and soot deposits, these substances are too aggressive for modern engines. Diesel additives that use them may lower diesel fuel lubricity and even cause engine damage.
Avoid Toxic Substances
All fuel additives for diesel engines use several substances, and none of them should be nor toxic or harmfulto the environment. Choosing an additive that is road legal and has all necessary approvals will ensure it has no negative impact on exhaust emissions.