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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I usually garage my truck and never have had any issues with gelling as it gets around 35F in the garage at the coldest, and additives with at least some anti gel properties have always been used. Went snow biking in the mountains yesterday, was fun, gratuitous photo attached :cool:

The problem was I left my truck parked at my friend's house, we had a cold front come through, temps went down to around 10F in town. It was odd, the temp was a lot colder down the hill in Denver than it was in the mountains, which were mid 30s and sunny. Came back to my buddy's house, truck would not start. Would immediately fire once and then nothing - obviously not getting fuel.

I had Optilube "Winter" anti gel in it, but stupid me did not read the label and I used less than half the amount the bottle called for the temps the truck encountered. Did not keep cranking it - figure if a modern vehicle does not start, something that needs rectifying is wrong.

Would have put the truck in my friend's garage, but he has a BMW 4 series in there, and that pretty puppy is not gonna sit out in the cold driveway, plus I doubt we could push the truck in anyway. We are supposed to be in the low 40s and sunny tomorrow, I am hoping it will thaw out on it's own. If not, it is gonna be there awhile, because our weather is going to be cold for the foreseeable future. Fortunately I have another car I can use.

So, evidently the local surface street suburban high volume diesel station I go to is not selling Winter blend. Just figured I would toss it out there. Gelling does happen.

As for the snow bike, it was cool. They are unruly and suck on groomed surfaces, but get it in the powder and it is like riding on cake frosting. They are not terribly powerful though, we were probably at 11K elevation here in Colorado, and that track sucks the power too. Our group also had a Polaris 850 powder sled. Have not ridden a sled really, and all I can say is holy crap, that thing is scary ski lofting blindingly fast. Wow... I just pointed it in a safe direction and pulled the trigger - stupid fun!

Back to the truck, I planned to change the fuel filters soon anyway, have them on hand. I will take a look at them after it is back, safe and sound in my garage for awhile.

385885
 

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Sounds like your area's winter fuel is no bueno. Stick a space heater near the filter box under the truck and it should warm up enough to get started. Did you pull the cap and find slush, or just process of elimination?

This year is the first I've used an additive at all. Hotshot Secret, after ProjectFarm did a test on diesel additives.
 

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Where'd you get the non-winter diesel? I'm pretty local, and have only had two diesel fill ups since I've been in this part of the Front Range.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Where'd you get the non-winter diesel? I'm pretty local, and have only had two diesel fill ups since I've been in this part of the Front Range.
Loaf & Jug. I go there as I have tons of fuel points. Saved $1.05 a gallon on that last fill up, but it sucks if the fuel is not suitable for cold weather.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Borrow or rent a turbo heater from a tool shop, the kind that throws off some insane BTU. Will thaw you out in no time even if its outside.
Great idea. I see Home Depot rents them for $18 a day. I have a spare propane tank too. I think I will just buy one, they are about $100, then my garage can be nice and comfortable, and I will work on the dirt bikes more during the winter. Might as well make some lemonade out of these gelling lemons :sneaky:
 

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Happened to me in Steamboat. Probably need to replace the fuel filter and get some PS 911, red bottle. When diesel gells in the filter, it clogs the passage ways, and even with heat, it does not clear all the way up.

Not sure how to on the twins, but the 6.6l I removed the filter and filled 90% with good diesel and rest 911. Poured rest of 911 in tank. Once started high tailed to a station and filled with winterblend. Kept the truck running.
 

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Diesel 911 added to the tank and allowed to sit for 5-10 minutes should do the trick. Had this happen last winter with sub zero temps and parking at the airport in Chicago.

There’s no way to add it to the filters because they aren’t spin-on. Just have to add it and wait, then cycle the key a few times to help get it flowing, then start it up. Good luck!


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Did you rev it up? I’m thinking next time this happens I’m gonna Fight the urge and let it idle for a really long time and let the tank heater work it’s magic.
 

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Did you rev it up? I’m thinking next time this happens I’m gonna Fight the urge and let it idle for a really long time and let the tank heater work it’s magic.
There is no tank heater, heated fuel is sent from the engine back to the tank. The problem with revving or putting the engine under load with gelled fuel is the flow is so restricted the injection pump will suck the supply line dry and the engine will die. If it'll idle then let it idle, the fuel will slowly warm up and warm up the fuel in the tank and increase flow. Adding Diesel 911 will help speed up that process.
 

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This new forum software is such trash, posted twice and I didn't do anything but click "Post reply" once.
 

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One thing to remember about winter blends. They vary be where you buy them. I used to work a gas station pumping gas. It was a larger corporate owned brand. Almost every station owned by the company. The Diesel we sold had a different winter blend then our stations that were 50 miles north of us. They had more "antigel" for those stations.
All of out Tractor Trailer, Pick Up and Car drivers of diesels would always add antigel in the winter as an extra precaution.
I add antigel into my outside Fuel Oil tank when temperature drops really low, the supplier adds antigel every fill up all winter long.
 

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Better to have it in your tank & not need it than to need it & not have it, at least around where I live in Buffalo NY. I use it every tank in winter, even if temps fluctuate greatly. Just not worth the risk not to for me. Also if traveling &/or in the mountains. Hotshots Secret has served us well.
 

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As usual I feel so ignorant, but in 3 years I’ve always been good with Circle K or Shell on Colorado Blvd in Denver. Including a couple mornings ago when it was -1F according to my in-dash display.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Got her freed up and back home yesterday. Brought "Mr. Heater" with me and warmed up her underside (fuel filter box and tank) for about 30 minutes and charged the battery, it still did not want to start - added the prescribed amount of Diesel 9-1-1 (about half of the bottle, my tank was full), kept the heat on the engine side so it was rolling up under the hood nicely, and cycled the fuel pump but did not not crank it for another 15 minutes or so to get the 911 through the system, and it fired right up, ran perfectly. That 911 stuff works.

Pulled the fuel filters when I got home after driving about 15 miles, drained the fuel into a clean receptacle, the fuel looked good with no water separating out, filters looked good, really not that dirty and no goo. Changed them as I had a pair and do them every 20K and was at 19K miles anyway. Poured the fuel back into the tank and was done.

Good to have it back home and in my cozy garage, as today it is snowing like crazy! The heater puts out quite nicely, it will be good to have for working my cold garage this winter.

385959
 

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As usual I feel so ignorant, but in 3 years I’ve always been good with Circle K or Shell on Colorado Blvd in Denver. Including a couple mornings ago when it was -1F according to my in-dash display.
Most places that get cold and stay cold will start treating their fuel starting around Nov/Dec and won't stop until March or whenever the average daily temp stays above 32F or so for multiple days. There are caveats...

  • If the station or fuel distributor only dose for the temps expected in the forecast and they suddenly dip much further then the dosing may be insufficient and gelling can happen.
  • If you fill up with untreaded or low-dose fuel and either travel someplace very cold or the weather turns extremely cold before you get fuel again then you can have issues.
These two problems tend to be the most common in lower Midwest states like MO and KY where average temps aren't bad but "polar vortexes" and other crazy cold fronts can come through suddenly and unless you're prepared and added treatment you can end up with gelled fuel.

Here in IL I'm not too worried, both of our diesels are parked in the garage at home and are rarely parked in extreme cold temps outside for long periods (overnight). The only time I had a gelling problem was a year ago when my truck was parked by the Chicago airport during an arctic blast that had high temps barely above 0F and it was parked there for 5 days without additional fuel additive. Had to have Lyft take us to Wal-Mart to pick up some Diesel 911 and then all was fine, now I make sure we have Diesel 911 with us whenever we plan on being away from home for more than a day during the winter.
 

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Most places that get cold and stay cold will start treating their fuel starting around Nov/Dec and won't stop until March or whenever the average daily temp stays above 32F or so for multiple days. There are caveats...

  • If the station or fuel distributor only dose for the temps expected in the forecast and they suddenly dip much further then the dosing may be insufficient and gelling can happen.
  • If you fill up with untreaded or low-dose fuel and either travel someplace very cold or the weather turns extremely cold before you get fuel again then you can have issues.
Wouldn't a low volume station also be a concern? They might be selling a fill from August in February.
 

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Shouldn't be gelling up with the mild temps this year. Last winter here in Northern IL we were down to -25F for a week straight and mine never gelled. I never add and antigel.
 

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Wouldn't a low volume station also be a concern? They might be selling a fill from August in February.
Well a low volume station would get a delivery every couple days of diesel.
When I worked at the fuel station we would get:
Regular Unleaded Minimum 2 Tankers a day 8,000 gallons per tanker.
Plus Unleaded Minimum 1 part Tanker a day 4,000 gallons
Premium Unleaded Minimum 1 Part Tanker a Day 4,000 gallons
Diesel 1 Tanker every 2 to 3 days 8,000 gallons
But most brands require at least a delivery a week per grade to protect the quality of their fuel. At last they used to.
 

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Well a low volume station would get a delivery every couple days of diesel.
When I worked at the fuel station we would get:
Regular Unleaded Minimum 2 Tankers a day 8,000 gallons per tanker.
Plus Unleaded Minimum 1 part Tanker a day 4,000 gallons
Premium Unleaded Minimum 1 Part Tanker a Day 4,000 gallons
Diesel 1 Tanker every 2 to 3 days 8,000 gallons
But most brands require at least a delivery a week per grade to protect the quality of their fuel. At last they used to.
I find it hard to believe that stations that charge 75 cents a gallon more than other stations sell that much diesel.

Although I'll admit I'm surprised that a new Chevron station in my area 2.5 miles away from another Chevron station can sell any regular gas charging 55 cents more per gallon than that other station. But its been open for almost a year and not adjusted its pricing. If I were the owner I would have started selling gas cheap to get people in the habit of stopping there and then slowly worked the prices up to find the point of maximum profit.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
For sure I am gonna buy another bottle of Diesel 911 and keep it under my seat just in case - that stuff does work! Plus, I find in general that if one is fully prepared, the sh%t tends to not happen. It is like a shield against PITA situations like the one I went through.

I got caught short, don't want to go through that again. As I like to say, it is better to learn from the mistakes of others than to have to learn from your own. Always here to help others benefit from my misfortune :LOL:
 
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