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Ultra-Low-Sulfur diesel fuel in John Deere Engines.

Discussion in 'Petroleum, Oils, Lubricants, Additives, Chemicals' started by Live Oak, Jan 1, 2007.

  1. Live Oak

    Live Oak New Member

    Dec 21, 2003
    Good FYI article about ULSD in John Deere engines and some things to be aware of. I would think this info. would be a good heads up to be aware of in diesel engines across the board regardless of the color of the equipment. ULSD will be required for on road diesels in 2007 and it looks like it will be phased in for off road use.

    Ultra-Low-Sulfur diesel fuel in John Deere Engines.

    What is ULSD?
    ULSD (Ultra-Low-Sulfur Diesel) is diesel fuel with a maximum of 15 ppm sulfur content.

    How will its use affect us?
    The good news is we will have cleaner air. The not so good news is that the introduction of ULSD fuel to older vehicles may adversely affect fuel system components (mainly seals) and/or loosen deposits in fuel tanks. As part of a good maintenance program, owners and operators of existing diesel equipment are encouraged to monitor their diesel-powered vehicles closely for potential fuel system leaks or premature fuel filter plugging during the change-over to ULSD fuel.

    Depending on how long the unit has run on higher sulfur fuel it may take several filter changes before system is purged. For system leaks new seals should alleviate the problem if they occur. The new seals will take the desired set compatible with the low sulfur fuel.

    Also, lab results indicate a slight increase (1-2%) in fuel consumption over higher sulfur fuel.

    When will this happen?
    - Diesel fuel intended for non-road engines and equipment must meet the Low Sulfur Diesel fuel maximum specification of 500 ppm sulfur in 2007.
    - By June 2010, the ULSD fuel standard of 15 ppm sulfur will apply to non-road diesel fuel production.
    - Be aware, some distributors may elect to go directly to 15ppm and reduce the number of pumps required for on-road and off-road applications. Also, in some cases, common delivery systems may be used for both on and off road fuels. Federal law requires labels on each pump designating sulfur levels.

    In California, all diesel fuel will transition in 2006 to meet the ULSD 15 ppm level. Compliance date for California retail outlets is December 2006.

    Non-Road Diesel Fuel Standards

    Who Covered Fuel 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 and Beyond
    All Off-Road Non-Road 5000 ppm 500 ppm 500 ppm 500 ppm 15 ppm

    What can we do to reduce risk with use in older vehicles?
    Know what fuel sulfur content you are fueling with thru pump labels and fuel sampling.
    Monitor the fuel system, especially around pump and filters, to catch seepage and to prevent air ingestion.
    Check filters for premature plugging.

    Additives for lubricity should not be necessary. Like Low Sulfur Diesel fuel, ULSD fuel requires good lubricity and corrosion inhibitors to prevent unacceptable engine wear. Additives to increase lubricity and to inhibit corrosion will be added to ULSD fuel prior to its retail sale. With these additives, ULSD fuel is expected to perform as well as Low Sulfur Diesel fuel.

    In-depth Technical Information
    John Deere allows the use of 15 ppm Ultra-Low-Sulfur diesel fuel (more commonly known as ULSD or S15 Diesel Fuels) in all Engine Models as long as the diesel fuel used meets the latest ASTM D-975 diesel fuel lubricity specification which allows up to a 520-micron maximum wear scar diameter measured on a High Frequency Reciprocating Test Rig (HFRR). This new ASTM lubricity standard was introduced on 01 January 2005, and applies to both on-road and off-road diesel fuels.

    Please note that between 01 June 2006 and 01 June 2007, federal law will allow three different diesel fuel Sulfur content levels (5000 ppm, 500 ppm, and 15 ppm) in off-road diesel engine applications, and that after 01 June 2007, all off-road diesel engines must use 500 ppm (or lower) Sulfur content diesel fuel. And after 01 June 2010, all off-road diesel engines must use 15 ppm (or lower) Sulfur content diesel fuel.

    Generally speaking, the same oil refinery process used to reduce Sulfur content also removes Oxygen, Nitrogen, aromatic compounds, and other key characteristics in diesel fuel, which are considered to be natural fuel lubricity agents. Sulfur content by itself has little to do with fuel lubricity. Many oil refineries are now adding back in other fuel lubricity agents to prevent the former diesel fuel lubricity and rubber seal deterioration fiasco experienced back in 1993 and 1994.

    Reducing the Sulfur content of diesel fuel from 500 ppm to 15 ppm will have no significant affect on engine fuel economy, fuel density, fuel heating value, or fuel lubricity.

    For your reference, here are the current and future government regulations addressing diesel fuel Sulfur content in the United States and Europe.

    Maximum Limits of Diesel Fuel Sulfur from EPA of the United States:

    On-Highway Fuel Sulfur Content (ppm)

    EPA Current Limit
    Current Market Average
    EPA 01 June 2006 Limit
    EPA 01 June 2010 Limit

    15 (80% minimum)
    15 (100%)

    Off-Highway Fuel Sulfur Content (ppm)

    EPA Current Limit
    Current Market Average
    EPA 01 June 2007 Limit
    EPA 01 June 2010 Limit


    There will be a phase-in period for on-highway ULSD from 2006 to 2010 (EPA 80/20 rule) meaning at least 80% of the on-highway fuel must be ULSD and the rest can be 500-ppm Sulfur fuel (supplied from smaller oil refineries). As usual, we expect to see significant spill-over of on-highway diesel fuels into the off-road market sector in the near future.

    Maximum Limits of Diesel Fuel Sulfur from European Union:

    On-Highway Fuel Sulfur Content (ppm)

    EU Current Limit
    Current Market Range
    EU 01 Jan 2006 Limit 5
    EU 01 Jan 2009 Limit


    Off-Highway Fuel Sulfur Content (ppm)

    EU Current Limit
    Current Market Range
    EU 01 Jan 2008 Limit
    EU 01 Jan 2009 Limit

    10 (TBD)

    Please note that EU 01 January 2009 off-road limit of 10 ppm fuel Sulfur will be reviewed and finalized next year, and that individual EU member states may impose their own rules which could be more stringent than the common EU standard.

    The conversion of fuel Sulfur content as measured on a percentage mass basis to ppm units is shown below:

    500 ppm = (500 / 1,000,000) x 100 = 0.05%
    15 ppm = (15 / 1,000,000) x 100 = 0.0015%

    Or going the other way,
    0.5% Sulfur Content = 5000 ppm
    1.0% Sulfur Content = 10000 ppm
  2. ducati996

    ducati996 Lifetime Supporting Member

    Dec 26, 2003
    Im glad now to have a 2006 6.0 turbo diesel PowerStroke. The 6.4's (when available) will only run on USLD, whereas the 6.0 can handle both and removes the worry. I havent noticed a difference using USLD and I still always add Power service between fills.

  3. Eddinberry

    Eddinberry New Member

    Dec 3, 2006

    I was talking to my old business partner today about the same thing.

    He installed a Bully Dog exhaust and intake system, and the programable chip.

    His 2500 is faster in the 1/4 mile than his Vette!!!!!!!!!!!

    Heck of a truck!!!

    I Reckon we are back to where we were in the early 80's, when all the nonsense started with emissions, and the trucks were neutred.

    Hang on to that old girl!!!!

    At least untill Detroit gets things sorted out.

    I'm hanging on to my 02' 2500HD as well.

    Nothing like a small block at pitch, to make the ears and soul warm!!!

    Stay safe!!
  4. ducati996

    ducati996 Lifetime Supporting Member

    Dec 26, 2003
    Its amazing what can be done with turbos' and the amount of power generated.

    I have zero desire to do that to my truck - I find it perfect the way it is plenty of power to spare - hauls everything I throw at it without a worry :)

    JDFANATIC New Member

    Dec 28, 2005

    Thanks for the post; I've been wondering how the new reg's would shake out with Deere diesels.
  6. Live Oak

    Live Oak New Member

    Dec 21, 2003
    Supposedly ULSD is formulated with an additive package that addresses the lubrication and other issues caused by the reduced sulfur content. To be on the safe side, I mix in Power Service in the silver bottle full strength and add about 2 quarts of outboard two stroke oil to each tank full. I think the Cummins diesels equipped with the VP-44 rotary injection pumps are more sensitive to the lubrication issue than others so I think it is cheap insurance. I new pump cost about $1500 give or take plus installation.

    JDFANATIC New Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    I use the PowerService additive too and agree it's cheap insurance.
  8. Live Oak

    Live Oak New Member

    Dec 21, 2003
    Have you noticed the huge price jump in Power Service since they went to the new ULSD formula? I used to get it on sale for about $9 a 96 oz. bottle but now it is about $16! :eek: At that price I may be looking into buying a 5 gallon can of dfa from a distributor or a 55 gallon drum of biodiesel to mix in at about 5%. I think the latest prices on Amalagamated diesel fuel additive for their 5-gallon container shipped is $114.68 ($64.68 per pail). 5 gallons is the smallest amount they will ship. If you can buy 4 pails they can freight ship it to a business and save some $$.
    That is about the same or just a little cheaper than the Walmart price for Power Service. At least, last time I checked that was the price. They are located up in Ft. Wayne Indiana.