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Old 11-07-2021, 04:53 PM   #1
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99% Biomass diesel at Chevron

Stopped at the Chevron where I've been buying gas and diesel for years, noticed this new sticker on the pump - Click image for larger version

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It states that the "Diesel" fuel is "99% Biomass ...".

As MB says to use no more than 5% biodiesel I am leery of using this stuff in my 2016 Navion (2015 chassis). I am aware that biomass based diesel and biodiesel are not the same thing but still wonder about long term damage.

Anyone have any info on this? I don't know how long the stickers have been on the pumps but this is the first time I've noticed them. Not a problem today as I was fueling my motorcycle which does fine on the ethanol diluted Chevron "gasoline".
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Old 11-07-2021, 05:27 PM   #2
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The brown lettering on the yellow background suggests it's > 20% biodiesel which is way over what MB will allow. I guess you're not filling your Navion there any more?
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Old 11-08-2021, 08:33 AM   #3
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Biomass derived fuel is not necessarily biodiesel. I'd run a tank and see how it goes as biomass derived fuel is going to become more dominant in the future.

Think of it this way - dino diesel is 100% biomass derived. It took a bunch of dead animals and plants to make it. Biomass diesel is made from recycled oils and hydrocarbons that is distilled into diesel.
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Old 11-08-2021, 08:56 AM   #4
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I would be leery of running "biomass" derived fuel as well in any modern diesel engine. I would use it in a heater maybe though.

I prefer the "natural" hydrocarbons that are not contaminated with who knows what else or what issues could result with using biomass based fuel.
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Old 11-08-2021, 09:08 AM   #5
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To find out for certain what Mercedes-Benz thinks about the Chevron 20%+ biomass/biodiesel diesel fuel use in their engines, why not ask them? Personally, I wouldn't unless there were no other options, and then you're into the oil level caveats, and the rest of the warnings already presented by MB regarding biodiesel blends usage in their engines.
Newer versions of the 3.0L V6 turbo-diesel might fare better with higher biodiesel concentrations.
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Old 11-08-2021, 11:24 AM   #6
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Lots of misunderstanding about biomass based fuels and that sticker is the most confusing thing I've seen.

Biomass based fuel is simply fuel (not necessarily fuel for diesels) that is derived from organic waste. It could be renewable diesel, or biodiesel.

Renewable diesel is molecularly identical to petroleum based diesel. It is made by refining. The only difference between renewable diesel and pertroluem based diesel is the base product from which it is refined. 100% renewable diesel is fine to use in any modern diesel engine with no modifications to the engine. It meets specification ASTM D975, which is the specification for petroleum diesel fuel. Pure renewable diesel is labeled R 100.

Biodiesel is a fuel produced by chemical reaction of alcohol and a cayalyst to produce an ester that meets specification ASTM D6751, which allows it to be blended into diesel fuel, not used as a diesel fuel by itself. Pure biodiesel is labeled B 100.

We've all seen diesel at the pump with labels like #2, or B5 through B20. Those fuels are all petroleum based diesels, either pure petroleum diesel (#2), or blends of petroleum based diesel and biodiesel, up to 20%. It is the blend of biodiesels, anything with a "B", that Mercedes cautions about.

Now to the sticker.

It tells us the fuel is a blend of biomass based fuel. Okay fine, but it doesn't tell us how much of it is renewable diesel or how much is biodiesel blended in. It warns us that more that 20% of the fuel could be biomass based diesel (renewable diesel) or biodiesel. It is that word "or" that is confusing.

More than 20% biomass based diesel is no problem. More than 20% biodiesel is a significant problem.

To be clear, that pump should be labeled "R" and a number representing the percentage of blend added to the renewable diesel. R20 for example.

Lacking any other label, I would avoid that fuel until contact with the station or Chevron clarifies exactly what is the "blend" content of that diesel fuel.
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Old 11-08-2021, 12:42 PM   #7
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I would still run it by Mother Benz for a "yea" or "nay", in writing, before trying it. They're the ones that support or deny warranty claims, based on incorrect fuel type/use. To try to make sense of it, and be wrong, isn't worth the risk if engine damage is the result. If MB blesses it, you're good to go.
I've often asked about what's in the diesel at fuel stops, when there is no label (supposed to be dino-diesel, I know, but?), or the labels are confusing (like case in point), and got the "blank stare" or "I dunno" or "let me ask the manager" answers.
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Old 11-08-2021, 01:10 PM   #8
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As Refiners such as Chevron, Phillips 66, Marathon, etc. convert one or more of their refineries to produce 100% Renewable Diesel, the vision is to add the "100% Biomass Based Diesel" sticker to pumps at service stations, truck stops, etc. The "Biomass" used to manufacturer Renewable Diesel includes new and used vegetable oils and animal fats. The Renewable Diesel produced molecularly is identical to Conventional Diesel produced from crude oil.

The OP's pump sticker image that states "99% biomass" and also states "contains more than 20% biomass based diesel or bio-diesel is probably OK BUT the sticker also implies the diesel could contain >20% biodiesel which is a "red flag" as Cummins and other engine manufacturers currently limit biodiesel to 20% max in a diesel product. I'd recommend avoiding purchasing that diesel until the amount of biodiesel in the diesel blend is known.

Regarding Larry's comments about "R20" type pump labels, that is a thought as Renewable Diesel manufacturing increases across the U.S.
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Old 11-08-2021, 05:43 PM   #9
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I for one am definitely not putting this into my Sprinter without greater clarity on what's in it. So, I'd skip this station and find another.
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Old 11-09-2021, 09:01 AM   #10
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Ljwt330's explanation is right on. The labeling is very poor in the example provided by the OP. However, no commercial station sells biodiesel more than B20 in the US and if you need fuel, use it.

While Mercedes is a little slow in responding to market changes, Cummins fully supports Biomass derived diesel. Biomass diesel will become more common in the future and engine builders are going to have to accept it.
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Old 11-09-2021, 12:21 PM   #11
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Some related reading, posted by fagnaml. A very interesting read.

https://www.irv2.com/forums/f258/ren...ve-549551.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocinante440 View Post
I for one am definitely not putting this into my Sprinter without greater clarity on what's in it. So, I'd skip this station and find another.
Same here. No thanks, at least not without knowing exactly what's in it.
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Old 11-09-2021, 01:29 PM   #12
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I pulled into a station to fill up the other day. They had three different pumps with three different types of diesel. Not only did I not feel like studying up on the formulas but I figured that the guy who delivered the stuff and put it into the different tanks was probably too confused to get it right. I drove down the road to another station.
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Old 11-09-2021, 01:53 PM   #13
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I've emailed Chevron and MB to ask about this - will post any replies/updates -
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Old 11-09-2021, 01:57 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fagnaml View Post
As Refiners such as Chevron, Phillips 66, Marathon, etc. convert one or more of their refineries to produce 100% Renewable Diesel, the vision is to add the "100% Biomass Based Diesel" sticker to pumps at service stations, truck stops, etc. The "Biomass" used to manufacturer Renewable Diesel includes new and used vegetable oils and animal fats. The Renewable Diesel produced molecularly is identical to Conventional Diesel produced from crude oil.

The OP's pump sticker image that states "99% biomass" and also states "contains more than 20% biomass based diesel or bio-diesel is probably OK BUT the sticker also implies the diesel could contain >20% biodiesel which is a "red flag" as Cummins and other engine manufacturers currently limit biodiesel to 20% max in a diesel product. I'd recommend avoiding purchasing that diesel until the amount of biodiesel in the diesel blend is known.

Regarding Larry's comments about "R20" type pump labels, that is a thought as Renewable Diesel manufacturing increases across the U.S.
Kinda like what I said in post #2?
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