Grease Works: Biodiesel for First Time Users and How to Save the Environment
1. Grease Works!
-Corvallis Biodiesel Co-op-
New member info packet
Welcome to the Grease Works Biodiesel Co-op!!
Here’s a bit of history to let you know who we are:
Grease Works was co-founded by Mark Kosmerl, Peter Stocking, and Justin
Soares in September of 2001. Grease Works was formed with a single goal
in mind: Make biodiesel readily available in Corvallis and it’s surrounding
areas. To achieve this goal Grease Works has been structured as a Co-op,
where members pay dues ($75/year) in order to offset the costs of
operating/maintaining our fuel-handling infrastructure.
Alliances and Partnerships
Grease Works sells brand biodiesel that is certified according to
ASTM D6751 specifications and fully-insured (in blends up to 20% or B20)
by a national biodiesel producer. To guarantee consistent, reliable
distribution, Grease Works has formed an alliance with the fuel distributor
SeQuential Fuels located in Eugene.
Currently, Grease Works products include pure biodiesel (B100) and SVO
(straight vegetable oil). Our SVO is collected from local restaurants and
consists primarily of high-quality peanut oil. We filter all of our SVO to .5
microns to ensure quality and consistency.
Please contact Justin@greaseworks.org for current prices.
2. First Time Biodiesel User Guidelines
Clogged Fuel filters
It is our hope that new members will begin using biodiesel with at least a
rudimentary understanding of the basic properties of this alternative fuel.
By learning about biodiesel before you begin using it (and with a little bit of
luck) you can avert the proverbial “clogged fuel filter”, or, at the very least,
make the experience as enjoyable as possible (yes, changing your fuel filter
can be enjoyable).
A clogged fuel filter is the most common problem associated with new
biodiesel users. The reason this happens is not because the biodiesel itself
has filter-clogging particulates in it, but because of a basic chemical property
of biodiesel: Its propensity as a solvent.
When biodiesel is first introduced into the fuel tank it begins to dissolve the
accumulated debris/sediment/particulate matter from years of diesel use
from the walls of the tank. This murky mixture is then drawn by the
injection pump through the filter where the filter does its predestined job:
catching all particles greater than 5 microns. If your car is over 10 years old,
chances are you will experience one, maybe two, clogged filters when you
begin using biodiesel (in rare instances, i.e. extremely dirty tanks, several
filters may clog before all of the murk has passed). If you have a newer car
you may not experience this problem at all, though it is possible, therefore
be prepared: ALWAYS CARRY A SPARE FUEL FILTER!!
We recommend that all of our members with water separators in their fuel
filters (if your filter has a drain at the bottom than this means you) drain their
filters every 1000 miles. These style filters separate out liquids according to
density (heavier liquids fall, such as water, glycerin, etc.). It is common to
notice some visual disparity in the fuel as it is being drained, with water
appearing clearer than biodiesel, and glycerin appearing darker.
We also recommend that all of our members change their fuel filters,
regardless of performance, every 7,500 miles. The owner manuals for most
vehicles recommend changing the fuel filter every 15,000. However, the
largest maker of diesel injection pumps in the world, Bosch, recommends
changing the filter every 7,500 for injection pump longevity. We subscribe
3. whole-heartedly to the adage “an ounce of prevention equals a pound of
cure” and hope our members will too.
Fuel Hose Compatibility
Another common issue for biodiesel users is fuel line degradation.
Biodiesel, as stated earlier, is an extremely strong solvent inside the fuel
tank and believe it or not, that doesn’t change one bit as it travels through
the fuel lines. Certain fuel line materials (natural rubber et al) degrade when
in contact with biodiesel for extended periods of time. Eventually these
lines will begin to leak and will need to be replaced with a biodiesel
compatible hose such as Viton. Keep your eyes on your hoses and when/if
you notice them “sweating” do a squeeze test: squeeze the hose between
your fingers and check its elasticity. If it collapses listlessly with no
rebound, then it most likely needs to be replaced. If it feels responsive and
rubbery check elsewhere for the origin of the leak.
Newer European vehicles (VW, Mercedes) (<10 years old) come equipped
with biodiesel compatible fuel line (Viton is one such brand), and will not be
deleteriously affected by biodiesel. Fuel lines on older vehicles will need to
be monitored periodically to assess the fuel line condition. Interestingly,
1980’s circa VW diesel fuel line tends to handle the biodiesel rather well
(sometimes >6 months of constant B100 use before noticeable degradation),
expect for the small (3mm) injector return line that runs from one injector to
the next. This hose is notorious for degrading with prolonged B100 use and
should be monitored routinely.
Biodiesel Blending/Cold Weather Performance
Biodiesel can be blended with diesel (#2) or kerosene (#1, or “winter
diesel”) in any ratio. To ensure problem free performance, we recommend
that all members use a 50/50 (50% biodiesel/50% #1 or #2, “B50”) ratio
during the winter months, especially if you are traveling to the mountains.
The biodiesel we are currently distributing begins to cloud at ~28-32o F and
although neat biodiesel (B100) will burn well down into the 20’s, cold starts
become increasingly difficult as temperatures approach freezing. If your
vehicle has a block heater, cold starts will be a non-issue using B100 well
into the 20’s.
4. Please be aware that these are merely recommendations and as you become
more familiar and comfortable using biodiesel we encourage you to
experiment with different blends at different temperatures. As a side note,
several Co-op members burn B100 all winter long with no notable issues.
Due to restraints imposed by the producers of our biodiesel, we are unable to
recommend B100 usage, and must advice our members that the warranty for
biodiesel use is good only in blends of 20% (B20) or less.
Bulk Biodiesel Storage
If at all possible, we recommend storing your bulk biodiesel in a garage or
some sort of covered area. We have noticed that when storing biodiesel in
ambient temperatures <40o F clumps of wax crystals tend to form on the top
of the biodiesel. These wax crystals melt when the temperatures climb to
above 40o F and are a normal occurrence in soy-based biodiesel. Biodiesel
is also hydrophilic and even with drum lids fastened tight, all drums leak
slightly, especially if there is standing water over sealing edges. The more
effort you put into preserving the quality of your fuel, the less issues you
will have when using it.
State and Federal Road Tax
By state law, all fuel used in vehicles that use “a maintained road or
highway” in the state of Oregon must pay the state road use tax of 24.4 cents
as well as the federal fuels tax of 24 cents. Also, any distributor of fuel in
the state of Oregon is required to pay these taxes if they distribute their fuel
into the tanks of on-road vehicles. Since we are distributing our fuel in 55-
gallon drums (or other storage vessels), not into vehicles, the burden of taxes
falls on you—if you decide to use the biodiesel to fuel an on-road vehicle.
Whether or not you opt to pay these taxes is completely up to you and we
will be happy to provide the appropriate tax forms upon request.
6. P.O. Box 10802, Eugene, OR 97440
TEL: 541.485.9711 / FAX: 541.485.1647
fuels are made from materials grown and harvested in the U.S.
• Biofuels can increase America's fuel and energy independence.
• Biofuel production can create new markets for American farmers.
• Biofuels can enable any region to produce its own fuel for
transportation, heat and power generation.
fuels are made from present-day plant and animal materials
that are produced and processed annually.
• Many biofuels can be produced from "waste" materials, such as used
restaurant oil or discarded plant material from farms and forests.
• Most harmful emissions (like greenhouse gases) produced by burning
biofuels are re-absorbed and neutralized by subsequent generations of
plants that are cultivated to produce more biofuel.
fuels offer high-quality ASTM-certified options to petroleum.
• All of SeQuential's biofuels meet rigid ASTM-standards, meaning that
they are guaranteed to be of the highest quality.
• Many biofuels (like ethanol and biodiesel) offer similar performance
characteristics to conventional fuels, while also lowering tailpipe
emissions and stimulating the domestic economy.
7. P.O. Box 10802, Eugene, OR 97440
TEL: 541.485.9711 / FAX: 541.485.1647
“I believe renewable fuels such as ethanol and biodiesel
should be the centerpiece of our future energy strategy,
because these fuels are home-grown solutions.”
-South Dakota Senator Tim Johnson
Biodiesel is produced from plant and animal materials
grown or recycled in the U.S.
• Biodiesel can be made from any vegetable oil or
animal fat, including waste restaurant oil.
• Biodiesel production creates new markets for
American farmers and renderers.
• Biodiesel enables any region that can grow its own
oilseed crop or that has access to used restaurant oil
to produce its own fuel for transportation, heat and
• The domestic production of biodiesel creates
American jobs and contributes to the local, state and
federal tax base, thereby, strengthening the U.S.
economy and increasing America’s energy
8. P.O. Box 10802, Eugene, OR 97440
TEL: 541.485.9711 / FAX: 541.485.1647
“Renewable fuels play a critical role in shaping our
national energy policy and hold great promise for the
future. While reducing our dependence on foreign oil,
we’ll be boosting our nation’s reliance on the rural
-Arizona Senator Blanche Lambert Lincoln
Biodiesel is made from renewable resources
like vegetable oil and used restaurant oil.
• The U.S. Department of Energy found that biodiesel
reduces life cycle carbon dioxide emissions
(greenhouse gases) by nearly 80% compared to
• The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. National
Renewable Energy Laboratory have called biodiesel, "the
most cost competitive alternative fuel".
• Biodiesel's ability to reduce combustion-related emissions
has made it a common tool in federal programs like the
Clean Air Act and the Environmental Policy Act of 1992
9. P.O. Box 10802, Eugene, OR 97440
TEL: 541.485.9711 / FAX: 541.485.1647
“We began with B20, we did it as a test and part of that
test was to find out if our operators noticed the
difference. They didn’t. We had no complaints at all.”
-Principal Engineer Richard Harper of Alabama Power
Biodiesel is a high-quality, ASTM-certified option
to conventional fossil fuels.
• Biodiesel has performed flawlessly in more than 40 million
miles of road testing. Current biodiesel fleets report
consistent engine performance, equal payload power and
similar range over extended periods of use.
• More than 100 major fleets currently use biodiesel, including
the U.S. military, the U.S. Postal Service, several public
transit systems, federal, state and public utilities, national
parks, school districts, private recycling companies and the
National Aeronautics & Space Administration (NASA).
• Biodiesel delivers superior engine lubricity without the
addition of sulfur. Stanadyne Automotive, the leading
independent U.S. manufacturer of diesel fuel injection
equipment, supports replacing the sulfur in petroleum diesel
• Biodiesel has a higher cetane number than petroleum diesel,
meaning that it qualifies as a “premium-grade” diesel fuel.
10. P.O. Box 10802, Eugene, OR 97440
TEL: 541.485.9711 / FAX: 541.485.1647
Fuel Property Biodiesel
Fuel Standard ASTM 6751-02
Fuel composition C12-C22 FAME
Lower Heating Value, Btu/gal 117,093
Kinetic Viscosity, @ 40°C 1.9-6.0
Specific Gravity kg/1 @ 60°F 0.88
Density, lb/gal @ 15° 7.0328
Water, ppm by wt. .05% max
Carbon, wt % 77
Hydrogen, wt % 12
Oxygen, by dif. Wt % 11
Sulfur, wt % 0.0-0.0024
Boiling Point, °C 182-338
Flash Point, °C 100-170
Cloud Point, °C -3 to 12
Pour Point, °C -15 to 10
Cetane Number 48-65
Stoichiometric Air/Fuel Ratio 13.8
BOCLE scuff, grams wt >7,000
HFRR, microns 314
11. P.O. Box 10802, Eugene, OR 97440
TEL: 541.485.9711 / FAX: 541.485.1647
Biodiesel Material Safety Data Sheet
1. Chemical Product
General Product name: Biodiesel
Synonyms: Rapeseed Methyl Ester
Product Description: Methyl Esters from lipid sources
CAS Number: 67784-80-9
2. Composition/Information On Ingredients
This product contains no hazardous materials.
3. Hazards Identification
Potential Health Effects:
Inhalation: Negligible unless heated to produce vapors. Vapors or finely misted materials
may irritate the mucous membranes and cause irritation, dizziness, and nausea. Remove to
Eye Contact: May cause irritation. Irrigate eyes with water for at least 15 to 20 minutes.
Seek medical attention if symptoms persist.
Skin Contact: Prolonged or repeated contact is not likely to cause significant skin irritation.
Material is sometimes is encountered at elevated temperatures. Thermal burns are possible.
Ingestion: No hazards anticipated from ingestion incidental to industrial exposure.
4. First Aid Measures
Eyes: Irrigate eyes with a heavy stream of water for at least 15 to 20 minutes.
Skin: Wash exposed areas of the body with soap and water.
Inhalation: Remove from area of exposure, seek medical attention if symptoms persist.
Ingestion: Give one or two glasses of water to drink. If gastro-intestinal symptoms develop,
consult medical personnel. (Never give anything by mouth to an unconscious person.)
5. Fire Fighting Measures
Flash point: 100.0°C
Flammability Limits: None known
Extinguishing Media: Dry chemical, foam, halon, CO2, water spray (fog).
Water stream may splash the burning liquid and spread fire.
Special fire Fighting Procedures: Use water spray to cool drums exposed to fire.
Unusual Fire And Explosion Hazards: Oil soaked rags can cause
spontaneous combustion if not handled properly. Before disposal, wash rags
with soap and water and dry in a well ventilated area. Firefighters should use
self-contained breathing apparatus to avoid exposure to smoke and vapor.
6. Accidental Release Measures Spill Clean-Up Procedures
Remove sources of ignition, contain spill to smallest area possible. Stop leak if possible. Pick
up small spills with absorbent materials such as paper towels, “oil dry”, sand or dirt. Recover
large spills for salvage or disposal. Wash hard surfaces with safety solvent or detergent to
remove remaining oil film. Greasy nature will result in a slippery surface.
12. 7. Handling And Storage
Store in closed containers between 50°F and 120°F.
Keep away from oxidizing agents, excessive heat, and ignition sources.
Store and use in well ventilated areas.
Do not store or use near heat, spark, or flame, store out of sun.
Do not puncture, drag, or slide this container.
Drum is not a pressure vessel; never use pressure to empty.
8. Exposure Control/Personal Protection
Respiratory Protection: If vapors or mists are generated, wear a NIOSH approved organic
Protective Clothing: Safety glasses, goggles, or face shield recommended to protect eyes
from mists or splashing. PVC coated gloves recommended to prevent skin contact.
Other Protective Measures: Employees must practice good personal hygiene, washing
exposed areas of skin several times daily and laundering contaminated clothing before re-use.
9. Physical And Chemical Properties
Boiling Point, 760 mm Hg:>200°C
Specific Gravity (H2O=1): 0.88
Solubility in H2O, % by volume: insoluble
Volatiles, % by Volume:<2
Vapor Pressure, mm Hg:<2
Evaporation Rate, Butyl Acetate=1:<1
Vapor Density, Air=1:>1
Appearance and Odor: pale yellow liquid, mild odor
10. Stability And Reactivity
General: This product is stable and hazardous polymerization will not occur.
Incompatible Materials and Conditions To Avoid: Strong oxidizing agents.
Hazardous Decomposition Products: Combustion produces carbon monoxide, carbon
dioxide along with thick smoke.
11. Disposal Considerations
Waste Disposal: Waste disposed of by a licensed waste disposal company. Contaminated
absorbent material may be disposed of in an approved landfill. Follow local, state and federal
12. Transport Information
UN Hazard Class: N/A
NMFC (National Motor Freight Classification):
Proper Shipping Name: Fatty Acid Ester
Identification Number: 144920
Shipping Classification: 65
13. Regulatory Information:
OSHA Status: This product is not hazardous under the criteria of the federal Osha Hazard
Communication Standard 29 CFR 1910.1200. However, thermal processing and
decomposition fumes, from this product may be hazardous as noted in sections 2 and 3.
TSCA Status: This product is listed on TSCA.
SARA Title 111 (Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act):
Section 312 Extremely hazardous Substances: None
Section 311/312 Hazard Categories: Non-Hazardous under Section 311/312
Section 313 Toxic Chemicals: None
RCRA Status: If discarded in its purchased form, this product would not be hazardous waste
either by listing or by characteristic. However, under RCRA, it is the responsibility of the
13. product user to determine at the time of disposal, whether a material containing the product
or derived from the product should be classified as a hazardous waste. (40 CFR 261.20-24)
14. Other Information:
This information relates only to the specific material designated and may not be valid for
such material used in combustion with any other materials or in any other process. Such
information is to the best of the company’s knowledge and believed to be accurate and
reliable as of the date indicated. However, no representation, warranty or guarantee of any
kind, express or implied, is made as to its accuracy, reliability or completeness and we
assume no responsibility for any loss, damage or expense, direct or consequential, arising
out use. It is the user’s responsibility to satisfy himself as to the suitableness and
completeness of such information for his own particular use.
14. Biodiesel Health and Emissions Benefits
“We were careful to select a fuel with a proven track record
and with definite health and environmental benefits. We have
had a wonderful experience with the fuel, and I would
recommend it highly to anyone thinking about cleaning up
their school buses for the safety of our children.”
-Paul Cochran, President of the School Bus Fleet
Managers Association of Arizona
• Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel to complete EPA Tier I and
Tier II health effects testing which provide the most thorough
inventory of environmental and health effects that current
technology will allow. These tests concluded that biodiesel posed
no increased risk to human health at any exposure level.
• Biodiesel is 10 times less toxic than salt and biodegrades more
rapidly than table sugar. Mixing biodiesel with petroleum diesel
accelerates the rate at which petroleum diesel biodegrades. For this
reason, biodiesel is used to clean up oil spills.
• The use of biodiesel in a conventional diesel engine results in a
substantial reduction in tailpipe emissions compared to emissions
from petroleum diesel fuel
Emission Type B100 B20
Carbon Monoxide -43% -13%
Particulate Matter -55% -18%
NOx +6% +1%
Sulfates -100% -20%
PAH -80% -13%
NPAH -90% -50%
Mutagenicity -80% to -90% -20%
Ozone Potential of
Carbon Dioxide* -78% -16%
*life cycle emissions
15. Biodiesel Products
For transportation, heat and power generation
• Warranted and insured to ASTM D6751 specifications
• May be blended with petroleum diesel in any ratio