How to Make Biodiesel-Frequently Asked Questions
What is Biodiesel?
Biodiesel is basically diesel fuel that you can make yourself. It is biodegradable, non-toxic, renewable, and it will work in any diesel engine without any engine modifications. You make Biodiesel out of animal or vegetable oils such as soybean, canola, or used restaurant fryer grease.Click here to learn about different sources. Using our machine, you can make Biodiesel for $1 per gallon. You also have to add the vegetable/animal oil cost to that, but many people are getting their oil for free so they are making their own biodiesel fuel for $1 per gallon.
Can you make Biodiesel from used motor oil?
No, not out of any petroleum or mineral oils, but out of anything you can grow. With animal or vegetable oils it’s easy. Using our machine, The BioPro™ , making biodiesel is a fully automated process. You just put the ingredients in, press start, and walk away for a day. When you come back, you will have glycerin at the bottom and raw biodiesel at the top. You drain off the glycerin, plug in your water lines, and press “Wash Start.” Then you get to walk away for another day. When you come back, you will have a batch of ASTM grade biodiesel that you can use in practically any diesel engine without any modification.
What do I need to change on my car?
If you have heard that you need to make major modifications to your car in order to use biodiesel, that is a common misconception. This applies to running on Waste Vegetable Oil; that is just filtering oil straight from the restaurant and burning that in the engine. See how Biodiesel is different. Instead of modifying your engine or fuel system, you modify the oil into biodiesel. Biodiesel is chemically very similar to diesel fuel so your engine doesn’t know the difference. Waste Vegetable Oil also doesn’t burn as cleanly as biodiesel. It will leave deposits and actually start to pit your cylinders and piston heads.
Can every diesel engine run on biodiesel without modifications?
It depends on how much biodiesel you use. If you are mixing in 20% biodiesel with your normal diesel (yes, you can do this without any problems) no modifications are required. If your vehicle was made before 1994 it may have natural rubber fuel lines. These fuel lines are not compatible with pure 100% biodiesel, and will need to be changed for Viton lines. This is a relatively easy and cheap fix for most cars.
Will biodiesel harm my engine in any way?
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 no 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 with petroleum diesel will give you better lubrication.
I need a source for used cooking oil, aren't most restaurants already selling their grease?
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.
Is it possible to make my own oil instead of finding it from restaurants?
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 seem to be averaging around $1.50 a 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 ourCommercial Biodiesel Processors, read our customer testimonials.
To learn more, visit our Biodiesel Library.