Author: Ron Moon - 25 years Editor in Chief of of 4x4 Australia
Ron Moon has extensive experience touring for extended periods through
outback Australia and around the World. Where Ron goes is
often very remote, harsh
offering challenging off-road driving. Through his experience Ron knows how to
'set a up' a vehicle so it is
strong & reliable.
Ron had issues
with diesel fuel and trialled a De-Bug Clean Fuel
Unit and then wrote the following article and has been using De-Bug
Clean Fuel Units
your fuel is safe from damaging organisms? Think again.
RON MOON reports on a proven way to debug your tank.
"Now I am confident my fuel is
as clean as it can ever be"
Most of us wouldn’t imagine diesel fuel was
somewhere living organisms could survive, let alone thrive and multiply, but
this is not the case. To be correct these ‘bugs’ really live in the
water-fuel interface – existing in the water and feeding off the
hydrocarbons in the fuel. And, while there are more than 250 types of fungi
and bacteria that can live in this toxic environment there are only a couple
of dozen which actually feed on the fuel and produce waste. Apart from the
bacteria and fungi there are forms of yeasts and sulphate-reducing Bacteria
that can occur in the fuels and oils.
Diesel bugs are minuet, just a couple of micron, or smaller in size
- can live in a wide range of fuels including synthetic oils, some
solvents, normal petrol, jet fuel, kerosene, avgas, diesel and crude oil;
the last few are especially prone to infestation. They feed on the energy in
the fuel and as they grow (up to a rate that sees them doubling in number
every 20 minutes!) they form mats or long strings of gel-like green, brown
or black slime ( in petrol it can be clear). They also produce waste
products which includes water, sludge, gums and acids and they will consume
rubber gaskets, o-rings, tanks linings and more.
After an embarrassing `running out of fuel' mishap in Cape York, there were
still no signs of bugs in Moonie's new de-bugged fuel filter. On his return to
Melbourne Moonie took out the fuel filter and cut it up to see what it was like
inside. Again it was perfectly free of algae, bacteria or fungus.
Being a bit of a sceptic of such things, I
went in search of users who have had fuel problems and have used the De-Bug
units to cure them. A typical example was the
Director of a charter boat in Moreton Bay. Their 42-foot cat, powered by
twin Volvo diesel engines began suffering problems from contaminated fuel.
While numerous attempts were made to clean the tanks and algae killers were
used to treat all the fuel, the problem would reappear within three weeks,
necessitating yet another filter change. Within two weeks of fitting a
De-Bug unit the problem vanished and fuel filters now only get changed at
regular service intervals, when they still look absolutely fine.
Another happy customer is the CFA
workshop manager in Bairnsdale, Victoria. After
contaminated fuel stopped a truck on its way to a fire, a De-Bug unit was
installed. Now, many trucks and De-Bug units later they haven't had a bug
problem and their fuel filter elements are as clean as the day they put them
in. The L1000 and L4000 De-Bug units also carry NATO part numbers while
Volvo, after three years of testing, have them under their Quality Assured
Products product line as QL Fuel Decontaminator. It seems hundreds of other
companies around the world have had similar positive reports on the De-Bug
My experiences since fitting the De-Bug
unit are similar. Once we found the bugs in
my filter, and
we can rightly
assume: in my fuel tank as well.
Now I am confident my fuel is
as clean as it can ever be