Thursday, February 23, 2012


Welcome - Sticky

Yes, you can run WVO in a PD engine successfully without damaging your engine.
I know this because I indeed destroyed one engine and tried again and now have no problems and I'm proving it with my oil reports below. It's hard work but can be done. The initial system paid for itself in 2.5 years and then it took another 2 years for the new short block to be paid for. I've been driving now for 7 years on wvo and although saving money on gas is not my primary goal -- Finding a reasonable way to get off oil is.

Quick Summary of how I'm doing it:

1) I'm running a plantdrive system. Doughnut tank, on board filter etc.

2) I use Mobil Delvac 1 motor oil or Mobil 1 Turbo Diesel Truck - same stuff.
Everyone will scream at you that this is not an approved motor oil for this engine. But when you look at the facts (oil reports) you'll see there are no problems. Castrol is not 100% synthetic and the hydrocarbons will mix with the veggi oil and will thicken the motor oil. Look at my early oil reports and you'll see the viscosity problem.

3) I turned off EGR. This will prevent excessive carbon build up.
Early on, two of my glow plug tips broke off into my cylinders when they were being changed. The excessive carbon built up in my engine fused them in place. This was the initial downfall of my first engine. Pieces of the tips bounced around the cylinders. Then I started burning lots of motor oil. Then I would run low on motor oil. Then the motor oil chain finally broke.

4) I filter down to at least 10 microns. I use two 55 gallon drums with two hand crank pumps. First drum has a 20 micron filter bag. Then I hand crank the filtered oil into a second drum with a 10 micron bag inside of a 5 micron bag.

5) I use diesel fuel instead of B99 as my start up and purge fuel. With B99, I was having some very bad start ups as the fuel in the doughnut tank got lower. I attributed this to the fact that my veggie system design allows for veggie oil to get into the doughnut tank during the purge cycle. Newer systems do not have this problem.

6) I change my motor oil every 3k!

You can read all about the rest of my journey over the years below. Enjoy!

But has it been worth it? Looking back at all that you have done, it appears you have spent much more money (above and beyond normal maintenance) than you have saved in diesel costs. In other words, you have dug yourself into such a deep hole, your "investment" will never break even.
What have you done differently than before?

I think one should approach it by keeping the veg oil out of the crankcase rather than having an oil that can deal with it
I as long as you are using oil the crankcase and gearbox, you'll never get off oil completely.

Maybe a bicycle, a scooter or a skateboard wil truly get you weened off of oil in measureable amounts. That is, if you really want to be green about it. Maybe forget anything at all with bearings, just walk, skip or run for transportation... Anything more is just hypocritical
I read the whole thing with great interest, and I thank you for doing the stuff most of us would be too scared to do because of the costs, uncertainties and breakdowns any new experimental process involves. You have a lot of merit for doing it, and deserve our full respect for it and for sharing your experiences so selflesly and so honestly.

Keep up the good work and keep posting!

It amazes me that so many think substitution of vegetable oil for real diesel fuel will work in such a complex designed engine and injection system that was fabricated and predicated from the ground up to run on petroleum based oil, and nothing else. Used Vegetable oil is nothing but substitution of an inferior good for a fuel source. Sure, during shortages under war type conditions it might be acceptable, but not when diesel sells for $2.05 a gallon currently, locally, less than 2 miles from the owners house, on Topanga and Burbank Blvd. Any savings he made will be wiped out when he has to replace the motor again.
its not all about saving money but being environmentally respsonsible. don't dis the guy. Not many people would have the guts to try this in an expensive car, and that's the only way the veg oil communtiy can learn since the manufactures are buddy buddy with the oil barons so they don't test alternatives like veg or biodiesel. And for the record, my cars done 70,000 on veg oil so it can't be as bad as you say pal.
WVO can work in a newer TDI and you have spent enough money and effort to almost figure it out. Unfortunately, your journey and blog is FULL of misinformation. Your recommendations lack reason and you are doing the VO movement more damage than good. You should have tried to figure this out quietly instead of giving the anti-VO crowd ammo with this clueless blog.
hey great blog. I am also running veg. what type of pump is that and where did you get it. I am looking to build my own grese beast filtration system. you could email me thanks
"Used Vegetable oil is nothing but substitution of an inferior good for a fuel source" exactly and it smells smells smells when you drive.
Your car will smell like McDonalds!
I find all my vw parts columbus ohio. online. definitely the stuff you'll need.
Peoples comments on these post are very speculative. No facts and no experience has lead people to say odd assumptions about why you have had trouble. Your logic is okay. Your experience has been bad. I have run waste vegetable canola oil for over 75,000 miles and have noticed a few things. If you don't remove suspended water molecules in the oil you are probably causing polimerization in your injector pump and cylinder head. A colaleser style water remover only works for water drops not suspented water. This is probably why you are getting carbon buildup. I never have used synthetic oil but used the cheapest oil I can but I run a 1993 VW Passat. I follow the settling method that plantdrive talks about but I settle for 6 wks before heating the oil and passing air trough it for 6 hour and after for 4 weeks, then I put it in the tank. A 3 pole switch on the dash is best so you don't mix oil into your diesel tank. I highly recomend running B100 for 1000 miles through the vegetable oil system to remove any polimerization.
I respect people who are not afraid to experiment with alternative fuel sources. There is this one guy somewhere who, allegedly, managed to make a car that runs on water. It is a breakthrough in automobile technology, but where is it? And yeah, the bigger question is, is it worth all the trouble? Some say it was.
Very informative blog
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I think one should approach it by keeping the veg oil out of the crankcase rather than having an oil that can deal with it
About to setup my GreaseCAr kit on passat 2005, how did you disable EGR?
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