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Dec 05

How to Make and Use Biodiesel

With the general population recently scrambling to find a healthier, more efficient, and even more convenient form of fuel than gasoline, many have begun to realize the vast benefits of biodiesel. But while it may be a rising alternative to power the world, few actually understand what it is and how exactly it can be made. If you are interested in a revolutionary new fuel source that can lower costs and protect the environment, read on to learn all about biodiesel and what it can do for you.


What Is Biodiesel?

To understand the uses of biodiesel, it is first important to understand what it is and where it comes from. Biodiesel is a renewable fuel option that is created from fat from animals, vegetable oil, or restaurant oils and grease that are normally thrown away. Unlike petroleum-based diesel fuel, it is nontoxic, and it burns cleaner and more efficiently.

Like regular diesel, biodiesel can be used to fuel compression-ignition engines, many of which are found in older forms of specific automobiles. But unlike regular diesel, biodiesel is entirely biodegradable, making it a more enticing option for those concerned about the status and health of the environment.


How to Make Biodiesel at Home

Though biodiesel may be a more efficient way to power your vehicle, it requires that you put forth some effort in order to create a working batch that you can use

Most importantly, you need a good source of one of the above sources of biodiesel, although large quantities of vegetable oil is usually the most easy to come across. Additionally, you will need a small filter to drain out any unwanted food scraps from the oil, titrate to understand the acidity of the oil, some lye, and someone knowledgeable in the process (called transesterification). Or you will need to learn how to make your own biodiesel at home.


Make Your Car Run On Biodiesel

Of course, when you finally have your own batch of homemade biodiesel, it is likely that you will want to pour it in your car and head out for a ride. Though you can do this in time, you will need to make a few automobile modifications to ensure the new fuel source is used correctly. Most importantly, you need a diesel car already; a car that runs on regular gasoline can’t be converted. Additionally, you will need a conversion kit that can be used to make the modifications, which can often be found on biodiesel-supporting websites.

Finally, you will need to decide how to install it. You can enlist in the help of a mechanic, though this option may be more expensive than you were hoping. If you do decide to make the conversions yourself, you will need to understand the layout of your engine, the nature of the fuel tank, the seal overhaul for the fuel system, and the heating system of the diesel fuel. Make sure to consult an official source before attempting any modifications on your own.


Running on Biodiesel

Switching to more efficient and clean sources of fuel is a wonderful way to protect the environment and save some money. Biodiesel is one such fuel option, so do some research, make the conversion, and give it a try.


This article was provided by Charity Bailey, current Environmental Studies major and advocate for earth-safe modes of transportation. If you’re looking to get started with bio-diesel systems, Charity recommends checking out Fryer to Fuel.

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