Q: What is biodiesel?
A: Biodiesel is the least carbon intensive, most thoroughly tested alternative fuel available today. It will run in any diesel engine, in any ratio without any retrofitting of that engine. It is the only commercially sold “advanced biofuel” in the US that has been approved by the EPA, CARB, and the DOT.
Q: What is Biodiesel made from?
A: Any vegetable or animal oil, including used cooking oil.
Q: Will Biodiesel harm my engine in any way?
A: No, biodiesel is actually better for your engine. It is a solvent and a lubricant, as well as a fuel, so it will clean out a system that has been running petroleum diesel, and it will provide lubrication for your injection pump and other parts. The ultra low sulfur diesel that is available now has less lubrication (that’s what the sulfur was for) so it is hard on engines that weren’t designed for it. Even running just a small percentage of biodiesel mixed with regular diesel will allow your engine to run with better "lubricity".
Q: Can I make biodiesel from used motor oil?
A: No, mineral oils will not convert to biodiesel. Only vegetable or animal oils will work.
Q: What is a BioPro™?
A: A BioPro is an automated appliance, made by Springboard Biodiesel, that converts any vegetable or animal oil, including used cooking oil, into ASTM-grade (premium) biodiesel fuel.
Q: Is it hard to operate?
A: It’s automated and extremely easy to use. Like a washing machine, you load it, turn it on, and walk away.
Q: What is the capacity?
A: The BioPro™ comes in three sizes: 50 and 100 gallons.
Q: how long does it take to make a batch?
A: 48 hours in the standard models, 23 hours in the EX models, and 11.5 to 13 hrs when combined with a SpringPro™ T76 drywash system.
(Note: with the use of "Buffer Tanks" and a SpringPro T76, one system can produce 270 gallons or 1010 liters per day)
Q: How much does it cost to make biodiesel in a BioPro™?
A: If you or your business has access to used cooking oil for free (you already paid for it), the cost to make fuel in a BioPro is roughly $0.85/gallon. 85 cents is the cost of the other inputs, including electricity, required to make biodiesel in a BioPro™
Q: what is the conversion ratio?
A: Every 1000 gallons of used cooking oil will yield approximately 990 gallons of biodiesel.
Q: what is the expected life span of the BioPro?
A: 20+ years.
Q: What distinguishes these processors from others available on the market?
1. They are easy to use. (automated!)
3. They make ASTM-D6751 grade biodiesel consistently and reliably (if a user follows the directions in the manual).
4. Because the BioPro shepherds a dual reaction (acid then base), it will convert a wider range of oils than most other small-scale processors that only do a base reaction.
5. Track Record – machines currently operating in 18 countries, in all 50 states and at 72 US educational systems (see list of notable customers below).
Q: Who else is doing this?
A: Biodiesel is a globally traded commodity. More than 1000 BioPro™ systems currently in operation in all 50 states and in 30 countries (as of Sept. 2016)
Q: How long will it take to pay back my BioPro?
A1: See Return on investment calculator: http://www.springboardbiodiesel.com/return-on-investment-biodiesel
A2: If a restaurant (assuming it had this volume of cooking oil) started using our BioPro 380EX (which makes 100 gallons of biodiesel from 100 gallons of cooking oil every 23 hours) and made 2400 gallons per month (employee took Sundays off but was hired to load the machine and unload it once a day on the other days of the week), that restaurant will pay for its machine and labor in 4.5 months. That’s with diesel at 3/gal. If they kept that production rate up, they would save more than 50K$ by the end of the first year, in fuel value, and $65,000 in every subsequent year.
Q: Does the machine come with a warranty?
A: Yes. 1 year.
Q: What kind of power does the BioPro run on?
A: 110 V. for the BioPro™ 190, 190EX, and SpringPro™ T76. 220 V is required for the 380 and 380EX. The maximum draw is 15 amps. Single phase. We can convert to any countries power requirments and currently have machines in 30 countries.
Q: What is the energy consumption per batch?
A: 25-30 Kw Hours per batch. In California this amounts to approximately $1.70 of electricity per batch.
Q: What are the other inputs you need to add to the machine to convert the oil into biodiesel?
A: Methanol (99.9% pure), Sodium Hydroxide (98% pure) or Potassium Hydroxide (90% pure at minimum), sulfuric acid (Minimum 93% pure), water and electricity.
Q: How much space will I need to operate a BioPro?
A: The footprint of the equipment is small. 22” x 22” for the 190 and 190EX. The 380’s footprint is 42” x 33”. We recommend a space that is 8’ x 6’ or larger. When operating a BioPro 380, we recommend a ceiling height of 8.5’ or higher.
Q: What other accessories will I need?
A: A methanol pump, storage for your used cooking oil and/or your finished biodiesel (IBC totes work well s do our fueling stations), a 300 micron barrel filter, a lockable storage closet for your chemicals, a pump for moving used cooking oils
Q: Does the BioPro come with any accessories?
A: Yes. Each BioPro comes with an accessory box which includes PPE (goggles, an apron, protective gloves), a scale, containers for weighing cheimcals, hoses, manual, measuring cups, leveling feet, an automatic shut off fueling nozzle and the yellow Springboard Biodiesel hat.
Q: What is the recommended operating temperature?
A: The BIoPro should be operated with an ambient temperature of 50 to 100 degrees F (10 – 38 degrees Celsius)
Q: How much labor is required to do one batch.
A: 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Q: When I get the machine, what will I have to do to make my first batch?
A: Connect water in and water out tubes, load machine, plug machine in, press start.
Q: What spare parts are required?
Q: What kind of maintenance should a customer practice to maintain the machine?
A: Once every 5 to 10 batches, we recommend that the customer flush out the methoxide pumping system with a quart of vinegar and a half gallon of hot water. This will remove any undissolved catalyst that might have built up in the pump or at the bottom of the methoxide tank. Periodiecally check and clean the water out strainer on the back under warm water. Keep the BioPro indoors.
Q: When operating the BioPro, is ventilation required.
A: Ventilation is recommended but is not a requirement. http://www.springboardbiodiesel.com/files/pdf/springboard-methanol-biopro.pdf
Q: Are there any limitations on the quality of the used cooking oils that can be converted?
A: Feedstock should not be higher than 5% FFA.
Q: What is the quality of the finished product?
A: If an operator follows the manual, they will make ASTM-D6751 grade biodiesel fuel consistently and reliably.
Q: Can biodiesel be mixed with regular diesel?
A: It will mix at any ratio.
Q: Will biodiesel run in any diesel engine?
Q: What about these new model engines. I heard B5 is as high as you can go?
Q: What do the OEM’s recommend?
Q: Are there any waste streams?
A: Yes. Glycerin and wash water
Q: What do I do with these?
A: A page from our website that deals with glycerin management is here: http://www.springboardbiodiesel.com/what-do-glycerin
Wash water can either be put down the drain (check with your local municipality to make sure it meets with their requirements), gray watered or avoided altogether with the implementation of our SpringPro™ T76 dry-wash system: http://www.springboardbiodiesel.com/springboard-drywash-columns-springpro-t76
Q: Is it easy to get used cooking oil? Aren't most restaurants already selling their grease?
A; It depends on your community and how much you want to go knocking on doors. It would be a good idea to investigate used oil sources before you commit to making biodiesel. We have found that there still remains a surprising amount local, inexpensive restaurant oil and that restaurants are often more concerned with finding a guaranteed reliable pick-up than extracting maximum price for their waste oil. If you own a restaurant you are in a perfect position to make your own biodiesel, Learn more about how your business can benefit from biodiesel production.
Q: Is it possible to make my own oil instead of finding it from restaurants?
A: A growing number of our customers are growing a seed crop, pressing the harvest, selling the left over meal for cattle feed, and using the oil to make biodiesel. Of the farms that use our biodiesel processors and have calculated their costs, they are averaging around $1.50 to $2.50 per gallon to make their own fuel. Comparing that to the price of diesel, they are still saving a lot of money. See how much you could save using our Return on investment calculator
See what our customers think about our Commercial Biodiesel Processors, read our customer testimonials.
To learn more, visit our Biodiesel Library.