Fun Facts About Diesels

Fun Facts About Diesels



Want to increase your diesel knowledge?

Whether you own or want to buy a Duramax, Powerstroke, or Cummins, here are some not so known facts about diesels that you can impress your friends with in your next conversation.

1. No MPG estimate on the window sticker.

Have you ever noticed when you browse the heavy duty diesel truck section at a dealership that there is not any information on the sticker about the estimated fuel economy? While all cars and light duty trucks are required to have a fuel economy estimate right on the label, heavy duty pickup trucks with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) of over 8,500 lbs are not required to be rated for fuel economy by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The EPA does collect data on the emissions and fuel economy of heavy-duty trucks, but they have never required the results to be made available to the general public. There are many factors that go into determining the MPG. The weight of the truck, along with the weight of the load have a great impact on what the MPG will be. Also the mileage on an engine including the age of the engine can also influence it.

2. If you throw a match into a puddle of diesel, it won't ignite.

Diesel fuel unlike regular gasoline is less-flammable. It is known as a combustible fuel. You could throw a match into a puddle of diesel and it wouldn't ignite. Tempting, right?

The flash point for a flammable liquid is below 100F. The flash point for diesel fuel is above 125F. The flash point is the lowest temperature at which the vapors of a material will ignite when given some sort of ignition source.

3. Diesel engines perform better at high altitudes than gasoline engines.

Most people know that diesel engines are more efficient than most gasoline engines. Gas engines work at a specific ratio of fuel and air. When you get to higher elevations, the air is thinner. That means the gas engines have to add less fuel to keep that ratio intact. This decreases the performance of the vehicle.

Diesel engines are different because they have turbochargers. At high altitudes, more air is pushed into the combustion chambers of the diesel engine, which aids in better performance.

4. How much diesel fuel comes from a barrel of crude oil?

There are three things that come from a barrel of crude oil: petroleum products, motor gasoline, and diesel fuel. In 2016, refineries in the United States produced about 20 gallons of motor gasoline and about 11 gallons of diesel fuel from one 42-gallon barrel of crude oil. Diesel fuel is heavier and more dense than regular gasoline.

5. Why diesel fuel costs more.

There are a few reasons diesel fuel is more expensive than regular gasoline. The demand for diesel fuel has been high over the last several years not only in the United States, but other countries like Europe, China, and India. Also the federal excise tax for on-highway diesel fuel is 24.3 cents per gallon, which is 6 cents per gallon higher than the federal excise tax on gasoline.