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Bio-Diesel in older C8.3 Cummins Engines Any Issues


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I read some older posts talking about the use of bio-diesel in older Cummins engines like the C8.3 mechanical.   I saw in a post from 6-7 years ago that Cummins thought it was fine to run 5 percent bio-diesel (B5), but not 20 perent (B20).   I noticed on my planned trip next week from Shreveport to Dallas to Austin that all of the Loves, Flying J/Pilot, and TA-Petros were all at B19 or B20 in Texas along my route of travel.   I could not find any ULS plain old diesel along i-20 or i-35 in Texas except for the Cowboy Truck Stop (Sun Oil) north of Waco.    Does anyone know of any other stations easy to get in along I-35 south of Dallas or i-20 near or in Dallas who have ULSD?

Walt H and I were discussing this last night. I wish I had all the choices he has in MS.   I drove this morning road out to the Petro and TA in Greenwood, LA and they do have ULSD and I confirmed with the manager if someone is passing through North Louisiana.

How is everyone's coaches with older C8.3 engines doing on bio-diesel any issues ? 

I read about lift pump failures, replacing filters constantly, etc.  My coach is 25 years old and I am sure it has a bunch of crap at the bottom of the tank. 

thanks Steve in Shreveport

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If you are "sure" you have crap in the tank, then drop the tank and clean it out.

If you are assuming you have stuff in the tank, a good inline filter will strain it out.  Just keep the filter clean.  Keep one with you and the necessary tools to change while on the road.  It's not typical that the filter gets clogged instantly.  Many vehicles monitor the filter and will give you warning before it clogs to affect performance.

But BioDiesel and crap in the tank are two different subjects.

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I had a 96 Dynasty that I put over 120,000 miles on, mostly run on biodiesel. Keep your maintenance current, follow the advice of Cummins to have mileage service done and enjoy the coach. These diesels will run on almost anything. IIRC, my engine manual from Cummins said bio up to 20% was acceptable. I did put some 911 in every third tank or so and changed all the filters with my annual service. Never had an issue with that engine except it was a bit underpowered for a 40' coach....Dennis

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Well, a little good news...

The bio diesel will help clean out your tank. The bio part usually scrubs the inside of the tank leaving it cleaner than it was with non- bio diesel. That's unfortunately why you can get lift pump problems - the bio part scrubs (attacks) the seals in the pump. Good luck.

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I used to walk into the stations and ask the folks staffing the pah center or a manager if one could be found. Very few knew much about the products they were selling.  I have given that up and try find labels on the pumps that may indicate the maximum percentage of bio in the pump. Don't believe I have found but once, in Minnesota,  any fuel with greater than 20% bio. 

 

Jim McPheters 

08 dip 90k miles

 

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