copper and galvanized and teflon - oh my!

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David Lindley's Hair's picture
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Joined: 08/16/2005

I run across vague warnings about copper, galvanized and teflon. Too late - I'm already using all three. I've searched through the forums and can't seem to find definitive answers:

Does teflon tape really dissolve in oil? In prestone? What do you use instead?
Does copper react with oil? Prestone? What's the expected lifespan?
I understand galvanized reacts with oil. How about with prestone?

While we're on the subject - what about using regular automotive fuel line with WVO/SVO (not biodiesel). Are we talking gradual deterioration in a few years, or will the whole thing dissolve without warning after a few days?!?

Thanks everyone.

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'84 300D 5speed sedan
greasecar with add-ons
Bozeman, MT

TDIguy's picture
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Joined: 06/07/2004

From my understanding now fuel line is no longer in production that deteriorates even with biodiesel use (far more detrimental then veg oil on fuel lines) I think it used to be a old type of rubber or something used in the old lines.

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01 vw jetta TDI : RC II : VR6 Clutch
Vag-Com tool at home
Running on Veg since summer 04 still learning new tricks. There is a reason it is in the constitution!
Gun controll is using both hands.

swimgym's picture
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Joined: 08/17/2005

Well, DLH, y'know I think you're just gonna get on the road for your first big grease road trip and COMPLETELY SELF-DESTRUCT into a million grease puddles all over the highway because you have just so totally screwed up and broken ALL the rules!! We will all be waiting patiently for you to check back in with confirmation of the complete meltdown of your ride, which we all anticipate will happen in the very near future and at the very moment you are completely unprepared and without even a lowly screwdriver or even so much as a *clamp* to mitigate the impending damage...

Sorry, I just hadta laff it up on this one. :-)

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Karen in Atlanta
a/k/a PeachGrease

1982 MB 240D (Vanessa)

batteryboy's picture
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DLH,,

The teflon is impervious to all that shit but the vegoil over time reacts with galvanized - but especially if ur making bio d because the lye is caustic and will definately have a corrosive effect on the zinc ( which is in the galvanized metal coating).. Copper reacts with WVO but by the time this happens u'll be on ur third greasecar!!

BB

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ForrestGump's picture
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Joined: 04/14/2005

not true bb if you use galv in veggie it happens fast so does zinc..
buy a zinc coated water heater element and drop it in veggie . turn it on for 5 mins and pull it out and look at it. the zinc is all gone....
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Life is like a grease Dumpster, you never know what your going to get.
WebSite: www.VeggieBurner.com..E-Mail: ForrestGump.....

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Ry-dog's picture
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Joined: 10/11/2005

So if you have a zinc plated hot water heating element in your filtering setup, is it a bad thing?

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2004 VW Golf TDI GLS
1970 VW Westfalia

ForrestGump's picture
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no the filter cleans the zinc. but if you have a zinc filter head this is bad. i used one for about 6 months.

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Life is like a grease Dumpster, you never know what your going to get.
WebSite: www.VeggieBurner.com..E-Mail: ForrestGump.....

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ForrestGump's picture
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copper is ok for veggie and water
teflon tape is ok for water, with veggie it will desolve, but it takes along long time.
galv. and zinc is ok for water but not veggie..
i know there is people here who say zinc is ok for veggie, but do the heat element and tell me what you think. and all i can tell you is what happened to me.. as you know i run a powerstroke. i have a veggie filter by my veggie tank. from there the veggie goes through my stock diesel filter. when i used a goldenrod zinc filter head at first. all i would get is 2000 miles before i would have to change my filter. when i changed my diesel filter i would see silver and black flakes in it. I then started using a steel filter head and have net seen any flakes in my stock diesel filter and i get atleast 10,000 miles on 1 filter. so the way i look at it is. the same way i look at tees. the plastic tees work no doubt. but for just acouple of dallors more i can buy brass or copper tees and the last longer and work alot better.. why take the chance...

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Life is like a grease Dumpster, you never know what your going to get.
WebSite: www.VeggieBurner.com..E-Mail: ForrestGump.....

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Todd T's picture
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Joined: 06/30/2004

One reason folks are warned against Teflon tape is the risk of a shred getting into the fuel stream. Most pipefitters working on hydrualic systems specify pipe dope over tape for this reason.

I agree on the problem with galvanized metals. However, what about after the plating has been stripped clean... such as on the goldenrod filter housings? After its gone, is there any problem? I use a goldenrod as a final cleaning of the oil as I pump it into the truck. I cleaned out the initial reactive gunk a while back and will check again.

I'm not worrying about brass valves. The brass in contact with the veggie is actually cleaned. Letting it sit stagnant in brass for a long time could be a problem and clog filters.

Todd T

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Todd T
2002 F-250 Powestroke
Monroe, LA

David Lindley's Hair's picture
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Joined: 08/16/2005

Hey Karen

Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean they aren't really all out to get me! My experience so far is that Murphy was an optomist...

Thanks for all the clarification, guys. I think I'm OK: the veggie never comes in contact with the galvanized, and all the teflon is upstream from my filter. Someday I might rebuild the thing and spend the extra couple bucks for brass fittings and stainless or aluminum line, but for now I'll stop worrying about this and move on to the next next thing to fret over ;-)

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'84 300D 5speed sedan
greasecar with add-ons
Bozeman, MT

veggiebenz kenny's picture
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Joined: 10/18/2005

Hey, I just realized yesterday that the 5 gallon can I'm using for my filtered WVO is galvanized! Yikes! I called the hardware store to make sure.
Any damage done?

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Kenny
"In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists." -- Eric Hoffer

The world's only "Psychopopfolkabilly" artist--
www.kennyshore.com

scmadm's picture
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I was also told by a plumber that if you use teflon tape and not teflon pipe dope on a heated line, the tape will breakdown with the heat.

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Steve M
1985 300SD (Benny)

Using what other people throw away in a dumpster for your personal use makes you a BUM! Selling what other people throw away in a dumpster makes you a GENIUS! Go figure.

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1998 VW Passat TDI.....50 MPG

1981 Cadillac Seville Diesel....30 MPG   My show car and pride and joy.

Tom M's picture
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Joined: 03/30/2005

Nothing wrong with using copper. It will outlive you. Galv fittings, are another issue. The SVO will take the finish off of the fittings, you could get a flake of the finish stuck in a nozzle or SVO valves. Telfon Tape is good stuff, However it will come off some time in small strings and get cought in things you dont want it in.

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www.iaaem@aol.com, www.Onegreasyguy@aol.com

Justin Soares's picture
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I know that I'm in the dissenting minority, but I disagree with copper being OK to use in contact with SVO. The copper itself will no doubt last a long time, but I have questions about whether or not copper oxidation products and ions in solution will cause corrosion in IPs/injectors internals.

After several months/years of heating/cooling cycles, all the copper I've ever inspected that was submerged in veggie oil was coated with a green patina--the oxidation effects of copper. The oil was also contaminated with this and that's enough for me--a diesel mechanic by training--to never use it again.

WVO will over a period of months to years degrade "normal" fuel hoses sold currently at your FLAPS. Buna-nitrile is the material most of this hose is made out of and if you run WVO or biodiesel in it it will degrade and turn into a sticky black goop eventually. We Viton hose that is very expensive, but does not degrade with biodiesel/WVO use.

Hope this helps,
Justin

www.greaseworks.org

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blhfla's picture
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Joined: 08/11/2005

Quote:
Originally posted by: Justin Soares
I know that I'm in the dissenting minority, but I disagree with copper being OK to use in contact with SVO. The copper itself will no doubt last a long time, but I have questions about whether or not copper oxidation products and ions in solution will cause corrosion in IPs/injectors internals.

After several months/years of heating/cooling cycles, all the copper I've ever inspected that was submerged in veggie oil was coated with a green patina--the oxidation effects of copper. The oil was also contaminated with this and that's enough for me--a diesel mechanic by training--to never use it again.

WVO will over a period of months to years degrade "normal" fuel hoses sold currently at your FLAPS. Buna-nitrile is the material most of this hose is made out of and if you run WVO or biodiesel in it it will degrade and turn into a sticky black goop eventually. We Viton hose that is very expensive, but does not degrade with biodiesel/WVO use.

Hope this helps,
Justin

www.greaseworks.org

Copper may cause formation of slime and elevate FFAs in vegoil. That is why Plantdrive doesn't use copper in their products; they use SS, and they have been offering components for VO longer than just about anyone. You MAY use copper and never have a problem, but why take a chance? Personally I'd rather spend a little more to be certain, but then I expect to get the full life out of my diesel with as few problems as possible, and you know they're good for hundreds of thousands of miles.

Where do you get the Viton hose Justin?

BrianMiller's picture
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Joined: 05/11/2006

bump

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I use to be ForrestGump..My Forum, ,My BLOG,

Grease$peace's picture
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IMO copper and brass are both a very bad idea. I had a plastic tank with copper heating element (coiled copper tubing with coolant running through). I had zero buildup on the plastic, but thick gobs of brown sticky stuff on the copper (even the parts that were always submerged). Once I replaced it with aluminum, the buildup was minimal. Also when I removed my veg setup from my last truck (I didn't kill it, I sold it) I found brown sticky stuff in all of the brass fittings, and nowhere else.

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Homemade kit = $200, toyota pickup = $700, 50,000 miles on veg = free truck

BrianMiller's picture
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thats Poly.. we have learned a lot in the last couple of years

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I use to be ForrestGump..My Forum, ,My BLOG,

rkpatt's picture
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I need to replace the horizontally " stick " style homemade copper pipe coolant heated pickup on my 1994 f250 with one made of aluminum . The pickup screws into a 1" bung I brazed on on the side of tank an inch or so off the bottom . Any suggestions on how to make a replacement made of aluminum ? - Thanks

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1994 Ford F250 NA 7.3 - Homebuilt WVO conversion

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