The mining and aggregates industry plays a critical role in extracting resources needed to build the US economy – and diesel fuel is the lifeblood that keeps that equipment running. Diesel plays a crucial role in powering essential equipment such as loaders, haul trucks, drills, and generators. Because these machines operate non-stop, they can experience a significant amount of wear and tear, leading to possible mechanical issues. To keep everything running smoothly, fleets must ensure they have access to a steady supply of high-quality fuel.
Fuel Quality Matters
Fuel quality can significantly affect engine performance and reliability. The use of poor-quality fuel can result in reduced engine power and efficiency, increased engine wear and tear, and damage to other components like fuel filters, injectors, and pumps. Such issues can lead to costly repairs, maintenance, and unplanned downtime, impacting the productivity and profit of your operations.
Companies must adopt a proactive approach to fuel quality management, including measures to prevent and eliminate fuel contamination. Fuel contamination happens when impurities like water or dirt enter the fuel supply, leading to fuel degradation and breakdown. Symptoms of fuel contamination may include darkened color, haziness, sludge build-up, clogged filters, smoky exhaust, foul odor, corroded injectors, and poor engine performance.
To prevent these problems, keep a regular fuel testing schedule and analysis program to identify potential issues before they become major problems. In addition, proper storage — clean and dry tanks — will help to prevent contamination and degradation. Companies should also work closely with dependable fuel suppliers to ensure that the fuel received is of high quality. Additional filtration and treatment systems may be necessary to remove contaminants.
One way to maintain the quality of the fuel is by using additives. They can help to extend engine life, boost equipment efficiency, and reduce emissions. There are many different types of diesel additives, each with a specific purpose. Some additives are designed to improve the fuel’s lubricity, reducing wear on engine components. Others are designed to improve the fuel’s cetane number, which can lead to better combustion and reduced emissions. You can learn more about fuel additives in this FUELSNews article.
Mining operators should also consider the impact of equipment emissions on workers’ health and the environment. In underground mines, poor air quality can cause respiratory problems and reduced visibility. Implementing fuel additives and improving fuel combustion can help lower emissions, enhance fuel economy, and increase worker safety.
Tier-4 Engines and Sustainability
The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) mandate for Tier-4 compliant diesel engines has heightened the importance of fuel quality. To meet the EPA’s emissions standards, modern diesel engines utilize High-Pressure Common-Rail (HPCR) injection technology.
By delivering fuel at high pressure, HPCR systems can create finer fuel droplets, leading to more complete combustion and reduced emissions of particulate matter (PM) and nitrogen oxides (NOx). However, these advanced technologies also make diesel engines more sensitive to fuel quality. Poor-quality fuel can clog fuel injectors, damage fuel pumps, and increase engine wear, leading to reduced performance, increased maintenance costs, and higher emissions.
With so many companies on the market, it’s important to partner with a reliable supplier and choose a reputable brand. Mansfield Energy is a trusted supplier of high-quality diesel and fuel additives, with a team of experts always ready to assist you in selecting the best option to fit your needs.
Mansfield also offers a complete lineup of fueling system design, installation, and maintenance services. If you have been contemplating fuel tank installation or maintenance, give our experts a call and let them help you find a solution right for you and your business.
Don’t hesitate to contact Mansfield’s experts today.