Diesel & Algae

Submitted: Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 13:37
ThreadID: 3239 Views:2676 Replies:10 FollowUps:4
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Has anyone used one of these units, and if so with what results.


I have a lot of algae in my 2002 GU 4.2TD and am looking at how best to combat it.


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Reply By: Kev. - Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 14:25

Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 14:25
Sorry i dont have a answer for your question but just suprised you have that problem in a vehicle less than a year old.
I may be wrong but i thought algae was something that grows over time with poor quality / old fuel or rarely used tanks.

Where do you live as i would not like to buy fuel there?
Good luck

AnswerID: 12548

Follow Up By: Member - Kevin - Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 14:34

Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 14:34
I live in Queanbeyan, NSW. Questionable fuel is Shell - I have a Shell card so that's all I buy. Probably came from Jindabyne at Christmas or Fyshwick in early January. I had the vehicle serviced between these two fills and filter was okay then. No symptoms until one day last week when driving a local hill I normally drive in 5th gear and struggled up it in third. Filter was absolutely clogged with algae strings and other muck.


FollowupID: 7320

Reply By: Will - Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 15:01

Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 15:01
The reports from Ron Moon on that site are positive, he only had 17000kms too when he got a bad load of diesel.

I was told that running the tank to very empty regularly helps...

AnswerID: 12550

Follow Up By: Member - Kevin - Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 15:24

Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 15:24
Yes, interesting reading Will. I always empty the aux tank when main low fuel light comes on and then fill both when it comes on again. Have rung Morisons and awaiting a call back.


FollowupID: 7322

Follow Up By: Rickwagupatrol - Thursday, Feb 06, 2003 at 21:15

Thursday, Feb 06, 2003 at 21:15
will. from a truckie's point of view, in the last 150,000km that i have done in my truck, i have never put any sort of addative in my tanks.
( 3 x 330ltr). if the tank is regularly allowed to run as low as possible, the heat build up kills the bacteria. also as the bacteria thrive in diesel, running the tanks low causes the sided to dry out and get hot- killing the algae.

FollowupID: 7384

Follow Up By: Will - Friday, Feb 07, 2003 at 09:52

Friday, Feb 07, 2003 at 09:52
Thanks Rick
That is actually what I was told.
I have done 129000 kms now and I have never had any problems but looking at the pics from the web, it looks like I did at one stage have algae as I did have that sludge, but it has gone by itself.
I always run my tanks ver low to allow water etc to be sucked in smaller proportions.
Thanks again for your recommendation.
FollowupID: 7394

Reply By: surveyor - Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 15:26

Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 15:26
I have encountered diesel algaes in brand new tanks etc, can be delivered by contaminated source, and spreads like, well.. bacteria..
Additives to 'disinfect' and doubling up/duplicating filtration systems works for industry, but regular use of competent diesel additives and filter changes at every service can control it for domestic vehicles.
AnswerID: 12554

Reply By: IAMGQ - Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 16:30

Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 16:30
I just know we should always keep the tank full to minimize any water condensation. I know it may be quite difficult espeically the price of diesel is so high now but as least keep it half full.

Does water also promote the growth of algae ? If so, we really should keep it filled as much as possible then.
AnswerID: 12557

Reply By: hoffy - Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 17:46

Wednesday, Feb 05, 2003 at 17:46
I copped a load of contaminated fuel in my GU 3.0l which knocked the power around badly.
I replaced the filter then treated the tank with a product called Diesel Fuel Biocide BC-250. One 100ml bottle added just prior to filling made a huge improvement. A second treatment fixed the problem completely.
Costs about $5.00 a treatment.If you can't find it at a servo try your local fuel depot. Apparently truckies use it by the bucket full
AnswerID: 12563

Reply By: Mr Bean - Thursday, Feb 06, 2003 at 10:01

Thursday, Feb 06, 2003 at 10:01
I think the best info that us ludites can give you is to go and see "Derrick"
at Qby Diesel and get the guff from him. I would also consider changing fuel sources as if one shell in the area has algae then its a fair chance that there are others as well. ie Tugg, Fysh, Woden, etc as the same tanker would have filled them all.
AnswerID: 12593

Reply By: Member - Kevin - Friday, Feb 07, 2003 at 10:32

Friday, Feb 07, 2003 at 10:32
Thanks to all who offered advice.

Since the initial problem I have not had the problem again - I just quickly cleaned the filter and replaced it and am still on the same tank of fuel. Cummins Diesel, who service all my diesel generators at work, recommended an additive product called Fuel Doctor available from Supercheap. An aussie company from Queensland - www.fueldoctors.com.au - manufactures the product. I spoke with them and will give Fuel Doctor a go along with a new filter this weekend.

Fuel Doctors did advise that the only way to be certain there is no water in the bottom of the tank for algae to grow in is to remove the tank and totally drain it - a painful job in a GU Patrol. This is because the Patrol main tank doesn't have a drain plug and also doesn't draw fuel from the lowest part of the tank and it is possible that several litres of water could permanently 'live' in the bottom and never get drawn through the fuel system. Any additive could basicall conjeal in this pool of water and the resultant mass of gunge might cause more serious problems as it breaks up. The Patrol auxilliary tank doesn't have this problem according to Fuel Doctors (on advice from Nissan) and when emptied it is indeed empty.

However, I don't want to take the main tank out unless absolutely necessary so will follow the standard Fuel Doctor treatment and closely monitor filter condition and vehicle performance. If it doesn't seenm to be working I will take out the tank and go from there.

I decided against the magnetic fuel conditioners for the time being - mainly because there is no room in the engine bay to mount another unit the size of the Nissan fuel filter (the De-Bug unit is that size, the Algae-X unit slightly smaller) as I have ABS brakes and the main ABS unit takes up the space both of these devices would normally be fitted into. And also cost - they are expensive.

Thanks again.

AnswerID: 12648

Reply By: rlbye - Friday, Feb 07, 2003 at 11:03

Friday, Feb 07, 2003 at 11:03
Just reading some of the replies and with my own experience(limited)I think maybe we have a common occurence...with my own Patrol , same dirty fuel and gunk problem early in life of vehicle, and you should have seen some of the crap that was in the standard fuel filter(since fitted a sight glass)bits of hair ,metal bits ,slime..maybe the hair and stuff is from manufacture but the algae could be from only little quantity of fuel that is put in vehicle at time of manufacture, then sits around for months with no movement...any other ideas from anyone
AnswerID: 12650

Reply By: rickwagupatrol - Friday, Feb 07, 2003 at 21:12

Friday, Feb 07, 2003 at 21:12
okay boys and girls, enough of all this silly nonsence( hehehahaha). :)
time for all you city folk to learn a very simple bush trick taught to me when i was a little lad of eight, living in the topend on a station.

are we ready now cause here we go,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,:)

it takes a bit longer to fill your tank, but all you do is fold a pair over themselves a few times, place over the fuel nozzle( hold by hand or use a elastic band).
this acts as a primary filter, removing a large amount of contaminants
( and by the way, the finer the holes, the more you get)
the other option is cheesecloth, doing the same thing.

AnswerID: 12680

Reply By: David - Monday, Feb 10, 2003 at 17:04

Monday, Feb 10, 2003 at 17:04
Have been using a BP product called Diesel GO for about 10 years now, you add about 1ml for every litre of Diesel, before refuelling.
Have never had a problem with blocked filters/algae in that time- that MAY be the reason...
AnswerID: 12814

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