Make your own fuel!
Making your own fuel could not be easier! BioDiesel is made from used vegetable oil â€“ which you can find dumped at landfill sites or fish and chip shops up and down the country! Alternatively, you can grow your own rapeseed (those annoying bright yellow hay-fever giving plants that seem to populate most of the countryside nowadays).
BioDiesel can be used to work in most diesel engines and is actually cleaner to the car and environment that fossil fuels. In fact, diesel engines were originally meant to run on many types of oil â€“ not just fossil The cost of growing your own fuel should work out to around 29p per litre.
Compared to petroleum distillation diesel (which you get from service stations at about £1 per litre) BioDiesel has 100% reduced carbon dioxide and sulphur dioxide emissions. Basically, itâ€™s a fantastic way to reduce your carbon footprint and also reduce your cost of motoring!
Hereâ€™s a recipe from the University of Idaho website.
250g rapeseed oil
2.5g potasium hydroxide to act as a catalyst
Dissolve potassium hydroxide in the ethanol. You can use a blender on a very low setting.
Add the rapeseed oil and blend at a medium setting.
Allow to settle at room temperature to allow separation. Crude glycerol will settle to the bottom of the less dense methyl ester.
Poor off methyl ester from the top.
Wash the methyl ester by adding water, stir and allow to settle. The water will wash away excess alcohol and potassium hydroxide. Once separation has taken place remove water from the solution (pump). Take care to remove any soap (yes, you can produce soap using this method) or salt. The final solution should be clear.
Itâ€™s recommended that you should mix home made BioDiesel with fossil fuel (at least 20%)!
Please be aware that this article is purely to show how easy it is to distillate your own fuel and we do not recommend that you try this. We certainly did not try this recipe and us it on our fleet BMW 730d! The legality of the situation is also possibly in doubt in the UK, you should contact customs and excise to work out duty that needs to be paid (this should still work out cheaper than BP and Esso!).
However, many websites show that creating your own BioDiesel can be safe, environmentally friendly and above all, cost effective!