Grease Car Conversion in Wyoming

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WyoXbow's picture
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Joined: 02/16/2011

I would like to know if there is anyone in Wyoming or Montana that is running a Grease Car Conversion and how it is working in the cold weather. Any special extras that anyone suggests.

Thanks,

Dale

Billy's picture
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Joined: 08/11/2009

I run a jetta and a cummins in Montana. The truck requires a much longer warm up than the car does. When the mornings are around zero like today it may take a 20 mile drive before it warms up enough to switch over. So it will depend on what kind of driving you do. Flat Plate Heat Exchangers are a good idea.  If you have a powerstroke supposedly you shouldn't have any problems. They are much better at heating cold oil.  What kind of vehicle do you have?

MissoulaSVO's picture
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Joined: 02/01/2007

Yeah, depends on the vehicle. Yesterday was cold in the Missoula/Bitterroot valley.  About five below during my commute in the morning.  (but at least I wasn't in Butte!) I switched over at my normal time (about five miles from home), though. I have a 16 plate FPHE which I have found is essential in the winter.  I block the airflow to the radiator with a piece of cardboard from about october to may.

Currently, I grease an 81 300D.  (which is for sale, if you're looking).  I also have a 12 valve 98 cummins.  I don't grease it, as of now.  It does take forever to warm up. I would definitely have a FPHE with it, once I convert it.  

Once warmed up, and switched over, I have zero trouble running grease. I have regularly run it down to 10 - 15 below without issue.  Of course,  on those days, I have to park close to an outlet, at work, so I can plug it in at lunch time so it will start at quittin' time.  

Standard block heater is a MUST for cold winters.  Especially in an older car. 

Billy's picture
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Joined: 08/11/2009

Just drove home from a town twenty miles to the north. Temperature was down to 7 below zero. Wasn't going to use vegi oil because I thought it was too cold.  Coolant temp settled around 156 F.  But I had to turn it over just to see what happens. I have the copilot which is cool and the temp says low, ok, so I wait and the temp slowy climbs, no noticable difference to the truck. Vegi temp eventually climbs to 147 F by the time I get home. Thats the thing with my truck, it always takes a little bit for the vegi temp to rise once I switch over for some reason. Truck never falters though, I guess cause its a cummins, I don't know. The only thing I am concerned about is the lift pump.  Am I putting extra stress on it by pumping cool or only warm oil? I don't Know.  I am sure that when the oil hits the injection pump it is rapidly heated to the temp of the motor oil lubrication the IP. So I just keep greasing on down the road.

slatemd's picture
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Joined: 11/26/2007

Since you typed "lift pump", I assume that you are running a 12-valve.  If you check ebay, you can buy a new lift pump (as a spare) for around $30.00.  Last year, I bought 2 of them (real cheap.)  The reason I'm telling you is that I believe wvo messes with the internal diaphram of the lift pump (I could be wrong.)  I found that I will change out the lift pump every 18-months or so.  It is real easy to change out providing you spray all the fittings with rust bust BEFORE you need to change out the pump. I usually spray oil on all the fittings @ every oil change. Keep some fuel line and hose clamps in the truck too.

Last year while pulling a trailer, I was loosing PSI @ the IP.  I pulled over and changed the filter (I keep several filters with me) only to find that the filter was not the culprit.  5 minutes later I had to pull over on the thruway and change out the lift pump.  15 minutes later, I was "on the road again" with great PSI.

The manual lift pump is a strong simple device that has no problem pulling and pushing wvo.  I just think wvo degrades the interier gaskets/diaphram.

My 2 cents.

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Billy's picture
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Joined: 08/11/2009

I would like to install a fuel pressure gauge soon.  I think that would tell me if the lift pump was struggling to pull thick oil from the tank.  But I don't notice any cutting back of power if it was stressing. Slate, your 1st gen has a different mechanical lift pump than my 2nd gen 12 valve. I think having a backup is a good idea but its definitely not easy to change one on a 2nd gen.  You got to pull the starter, disconnect the fuel lines, unbolt the pump from the block, disconnect fittings and transfer to new pump and reinstall etc, etc. The hardest part for me is reaching up to the pump and getting the nuts started while holding the pump, two gaskets, and the heater bracket all at the same time. Its tough. I guess you can install studs into the block to make install alot easier.  I will definitely look into that next time I change it out.

slatemd's picture
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Joined: 11/26/2007

Hey Billy:

Wow, I had no idea that the 2nd  gen lift pumps are that much of a pain in the ass to swap out.  You have to remove the starter?  That blows! 

1st Gens are so easy.  I just assumed that the 2nd Gens were the same (except for the better IP.)  Live and learn I guess. 

As far as a fuel pressure gauge is concerned, I installed mine after the fuel filter and before the IP.  I imported the gauge inside the cab as so I can monitor the pressure.  I would strongly recommend doing that.  It is a very good low cost insurance policy.  If you can, find a wet gauge that has an integrated light inside the readout.  I had to install a small light over my gauge as so I can view it at night.   

Also, I have noticed that when my wvo is getting low in my 80 gallon tank, the temp of the oil increases a lot.  When this happens, my truck runs like a raped ape.  It is difficult to get high temps out of a Cummins.  With this in mind, I try not to over burden the engine while running grease when I have wvo temps from 100 to 150 degrees. 

 

Good luck to you.

 

Slate

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

A little late, but: I'm in SW Montana - been running an '84 Mercedes 300d on a greasecar kit for close to 6 years now.  You *definitely* want a FPHE, which you can get on ebay for well under $100.

Driving your greasecar around when it's below zero out is not a problem.  Collecting and processing the oil in an unheated garage in the winter, however, is a pain.

4grease's picture
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Joined: 10/29/2011

I run a 98 Beetle and 99 F350 on grease in Bozeman MT. No problems running in winter related to grease that I can tell. Unfortunately I installed a Goldenfuel Systems kit on my truck and it's not a good system at all, lot of problems with it but not related to cold. Although as an earlier poster mentioned, it may take 30 minutes for the grease to thaw when the temp is below 0. The truck lets me know when it's not liquified yet though, and I just switch back to diesel for a while longer. I need to add a temp sensor. Far fewer problems with the Greasecar kit in the Beetle, plus the grease heats up faster because the engine runs hotter, Greasecar runs greaselines inside coolant lines (as opposed to next to them like Goldenfuels), and probably because the tank is in the car not a pickup bed.