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Old 01-05-2011, 05:54 PM   #1
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Adding transmission fluid to diesel

I was told by a diesel truck driver to add 1 quart of transmission fluid to each 50 gallons of diesel to lubricate the seals and pumps, injectors. Does anyone know if this is a good idea? I have a 350 Cummins in an 04 Camelot.
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Old 01-05-2011, 07:12 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by lekhuset View Post
I was told by a diesel truck driver to add 1 quart of transmission fluid to each 50 gallons of diesel to lubricate the seals and pumps, injectors. Does anyone know if this is a good idea? I have a 350 Cummins in an 04 Camelot.
Although it was a favored practice of truckers, for years, to run Dextron in their fuel you may want to check with Federal Laws regarding using any diesel additive which has a "pink tint" when combined with diesel fuel. Fed and State Inspectors routinely inspect business/commercial vehicles for using #2 Heating Oil which is known as "dyed fuel"! There's a very expensive fine for using home heating oil/off road fuel in a "on the road motor vehicle.

There are several aftermarket additives which will do a supper job of lubing/cleaning injectors and conditioning seals etc. Lucas is one great product that comes to mind
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Old 01-05-2011, 08:55 PM   #3
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Some Ford powerstroke owners add 2 cycle engine oil to the diesel fuel. Think at the rate of about an ounce of oil per gallon diesel. most seem to purchase Walmart brand 2 cycle oil which believe is about $10 per gallon. If you are using tranny fluild in your diesel proof of burden would be on you to prove it was not untaxed fuel. Some states DOT are now checking smaller pickups fuel also. As previously stated there is many additives out there that are legal. I use Diesel kleen which can be purchased about anywhere including Walmart
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:48 PM   #4
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ULSD is the culpret. Removing the sulfer removed alot of the lube properties of the fuel. Truckers have all sorts of tricks that have been passed down along the ages. The problem with that is that the truckers still think their operating 1960 diesels. EPA mandate's to improve emissions drove the industry to make technical advances that improved our engines ten fold. Adding things to the fuel can damage exhaust treatment equipment, and effect engine control computers. Check with the engine manufacture and stay with products developed for that purpose. A good company will have test data showing their products effect and safe use for all systems in a modern engine.
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:56 PM   #5
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ATF is not designed to burn. 2 cycle oil IS designed to burn.
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Old 01-05-2011, 10:29 PM   #6
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I was told by a diesel truck driver to add 1 quart of transmission fluid to each 50 gallons of diesel to lubricate the seals and pumps, injectors. Does anyone know if this is a good idea? I have a 350 Cummins in an 04 Camelot.
I don't know about diesel, but my son is a lieutenant on a large sheriff's department and each squad gets a cup of transmission fluid in the gas tank once a month to keep the injectors clean. Joe
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Old 01-05-2011, 11:36 PM   #7
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ATF is also full of detergents which help with cleaning things out. I've done the ATF trick before and I can't say if it really helped or not, the truck is still (Knock on wood.) out there and doing just fine.

I'm not sure how much ATF it would take to turn the fuel red. Off road dye takes nothing to turn an entire tank red. Guys that "Do it just every now and then" will have red fuel for MONTHS! That dye is designed to spread like the plague.

2 stroke oil would help for lubrication, but honestly a proper additive with lube such as the Lucas mentioned would be the best route.
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Old 01-06-2011, 02:18 PM   #8
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ATF is not designed to burn. 2 cycle oil IS designed to burn.
I agree, however there are stories of burning ATF in large quantities: http://www.dieselpowermag.com/tech/f...uel/index.html
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Old 01-06-2011, 06:33 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by lekhuset View Post
I was told by a diesel truck driver to add 1 quart of transmission fluid to each 50 gallons of diesel to lubricate the seals and pumps, injectors. Does anyone know if this is a good idea? I have a 350 Cummins in an 04 Camelot.
There is no reason to add ATF.

If there was any benefit, Cummins would recommend it.
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Old 01-06-2011, 07:45 PM   #10
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About the only additive one might consider adding to the fuel tank of a modern diesel engine would be a water dispersant, or algaecide. Adding ATF or engine oil to the fuel of diesel powered trucks went out with mechanical injectors, and mechanical fuel pumps. It was used many years ago to improve the lubricity of the diesel fuel, which hopefully would increase the life of the injectors and pumps. Old outmoded remedies take a long time to subside it seems.

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Old 01-06-2011, 08:30 PM   #11
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About the only additive one might consider adding to the fuel tank of a modern diesel engine would be a water dispersant, or algaecide. Adding ATF or engine oil to the fuel of diesel powered trucks went out with mechanical injectors, and mechanical fuel pumps. It was used many years ago to improve the lubricity of the diesel fuel, which hopefully would increase the life of the injectors and pumps. Old outmoded remedies take a long time to subside it seems.

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Not entirely true. The Duramax has a mechanical pressure pump that makes a safety valve limited 26,625 PSI and is lubricated by diesel fuel only. The CRD Cummins has an identical setup, I imagine the Fords are similar.

The metal portion of the injectors isn't terribly different, now they're even more precise and electrically actuated but where the fuel is they still have valves, springs and other parts to wear.

While the method of fuel control has changed the delivery system has more stress on it than ever.
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Old 01-06-2011, 09:15 PM   #12
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Not entirely true. The Duramax has a mechanical pressure pump that makes a safety valve limited 26,625 PSI and is lubricated by diesel fuel only. The CRD Cummins has an identical setup, I imagine the Fords are similar.

The metal portion of the injectors isn't terribly different, now they're even more precise and electrically actuated but where the fuel is they still have valves, springs and other parts to wear.

While the method of fuel control has changed the delivery system has more stress on it than ever.

Metalurgy, precision fit, length of stroke in pump and injector is much different in modern day diesel engine than days of old. You can certainly add oil to the fuel of Duramax, Cummins, Mercedes or which ever electronic engine you want, it however is not necessary for lubrication of injection system, nor does it burn cleanly. Too much ran thru an engine over time can and will leave deposits on the injector tips, causing a less than desireable spray pattern of fuel from the injector which can cause poor mileage and performance from the engine, in addition to making it emit dirtier exhaust emissions.

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Old 01-07-2011, 12:02 AM   #13
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Metalurgy, precision fit, length of stroke in pump and injector is much different in modern day diesel engine than days of old. You can certainly add oil to the fuel of Duramax, Cummins, Mercedes or which ever electronic engine you want, it however is not necessary for lubrication of injection system, nor does it burn cleanly. Too much ran thru an engine over time can and will leave deposits on the injector tips, causing a less than desireable spray pattern of fuel from the injector which can cause poor mileage and performance from the engine, in addition to making it emit dirtier exhaust emissions.

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OK.
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Old 01-07-2011, 03:49 AM   #14
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Metalurgy, precision fit, length of stroke in pump and injector is much different in modern day diesel engine than days of old. You can certainly add oil to the fuel of Duramax, Cummins, Mercedes or which ever electronic engine you want, it however is not necessary for lubrication of injection system, nor does it burn cleanly. Too much ran thru an engine over time can and will leave deposits on the injector tips, causing a less than desireable spray pattern of fuel from the injector which can cause poor mileage and performance from the engine, in addition to making it emit dirtier exhaust emissions.

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