Add Acetone for better diesel mileage?

dburt

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A few months ago a friend sent me info on a website that talked about the benefits, advantages, and "be carefuls" regarding Acetone as a diesel fuel additive for better MPG. (Sorry, I don't remember exactly what the website address is, I think it was a scholarly/government type site) At the time I was working at my old Ford/Dodge dealership, so I quizzed our top diesel mechanics about this idea. Our most senior old timer said he had known about it for many years, and said the idea was sound, and should work. The premise behind it is this: the Acetone supposedly breaks the molecular bonding of the fuel which results in better atomization of the fuel mixture, you don't run as much raw fuel into the cylinders, and what you do run into the cylinders mixes better with the air resulting in more power, and less overall fuel used. The website said it worked best to add two ounces to 10 gallons of diesel, and average increase of mileage was anywhere from 15%-35%. Our old time mechanic said at that 2 ounces/10 gallons ratio, you would not due any damage to anything in the new diesel pickups. I drive an '07 Dodge 1-ton DRW 4X4 6.7 Cummins w/auto OD trans, so thought I would try it. My mileage, empty or loaded, for 6 tanks of fuel that I tested with, went up by 2-3 mpg. I keep very good records on such things as fuel mileage, etc so I always hand calculate my mileage, and fuel up my truck myself so I know when it is full or "topped off". (I don't rely on the "average MPG" overhead lie-o-meter for accurage readings!) I told a good friend who is an over the road trucker about it. This being when diesel was $4 per gallon, he thought he would try it in his truck. Loaded he averaged 4.9MPG before trying it, and when he started adding Acetone, it went to 6.9MPG average. So he still does it, and with many road miles over the last 6 months or so, has reported no problems associated with it. I have not driven my deuce enough over the road to fully test it for mileage yet, but I am wondering if anyone else has tried this, and what were the results? I am a very pessimistic sceptic about most inventions and gizmos to help increase your fuel mileage, but the adding of Acetone to the diesel seemed to work. Recently the TV program "Mythbusters" tested the idea of adding Acetone to gas, and did not see any improvement. What do you all think??
 

doghead

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Just ask Wreckerman :razz:
 

Wolf.Dose

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Forget it, these engineses need the horses to be feed.
A Deuce needs 22 to 25 liters a 100 kiolometrs and a 5 ton about 50 liters for the same distance. A gas 5 ton is at 1 liter per kilometer or 2,1 to 2,4 mpg. Who tells somthing else hase to prove it or kick him in the nuts or where else it makes pain to him! Aceton is also something burnable. The old engines can eat it. But you have to summ up Aceton and Diesel use. And you are back at the old figures.
It is like a horse: Try to teach it not to eat. When the horse understood it, it is dead!
Wolf
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dburt

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Ok, it may be BS, or it may be something else, but have you tried it to see for yourself?? Talk is cheap, real results from real trials is what I am wondering about. The numbers don't lie for my friend who averages about 25,000 miles per month using it. And he was very VERY sceptical at first, because he, like me, had heard it all before, cow magnets, water/hydrogen injection, etc etc. I like empirical evidence, not hearsay.
 

randyscycle

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dburt, I'd say if you definitely saw a difference and were still driving the same, then there must be something to it.

Just beleiving it works wouldn't produce an actual rise in the MPG, so either the Acetone made some change, or you changed your driving habits.
 

dittle

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I tried it a couple of years ago for a few tanks just for ****s and giggles. No difference noticed. I had my dad try it in his half-ton and it helped the really "cheap" quality gasonline burn more similar to the better quality stuff. Not sure if this was due to the "molecular bonding" idea or the fact that acetone is flammabe itself. Anyway, for diesel don't waste your time.
 

dburt

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I drive the same 200 mile route each time, same hills and mountain passes, same weather most of the time. I set the cruise control to the same speed, I run the same weight, empty or loaded. I wanted to factor out expermenter bias, the only factor I had no control over was headwind vs tailwind. I was very sceptical, having been involved with internal combustion engines in one way or another for 40 years or more, been there, done that, have all the hats and tee-shirts to prove it. But, thought I'd try it for the kicks and giggles, and was somewhat disconcerted to find out an improvement that is actually measurable. Old wives tails are not supposed to work, urban legends and myths usually have a good explanation grounded in reality, not myth. Now there are more BTUs of energy in heavier fuels, ie: diesel, but because of thier molecular structure, they do not atomize as well as lighter fuels such as gasoline. Is it better atomization with Acetone, leading to a more combustible air/fuel mixture that would cause an improvement in MPG? Believe me, I would like to disbelieve in this idea, being the sceptic that I am. I come from the old school where I want to see facts, not hear someone else's opinion about something. Opinions, however sincere, are not as interesting as facts. I wish I had the resources to do a very carefully controlled experiment, rule out different factors that might affect the outcome. I suppose that asking for anecdotal evidence from fellow SS members will be laughed at by some, with good reason, we have all been told by various sources that it is nothing but an internet wive's tale. And some, dittle being the exception so far, would be somewhat embarrassed to admit having tried Acetone in the diesel thing. But, I have been somewhat mystified by the improvement by my friend's over the road truck, and my own experience. Was it just some kind of anomaly, as NASA calls unexplainable things? Kinda like opening up a can of worms, huh??
 

FreightTrain

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Total Fake.Same with the HHO/Browns Fuel super generators,100MPG carb,Fuel line magnets,The Fitch fuel re-refiner thingys,etc.NON OF IT WORKS in the confines of the proposed build.Yes you can break water down to H and O but it takes a lot of electricity and in turn you gotta put extra alternators on your vehicle sucking more horse power canceling out the fuel MPG gain.And it is impossible to produce enough HHO to run the engine straight.Acetone will actually decrease your fuel mileage.Around 25% less I think it was.Not to mention eating your fuel system to death.O rings,gaskets,Etc.Only takes a trace in the fuel to cause damage.Now the magnet thingys...how the heck are they supose to work?They ain't.Fuel is NOT magnetic......Same with those stupid re-Refiner thingys and Catilyst thingys you see in Diesel power and other magazines.All they are is an overpriced fuel filter.The 100Mile carb.....ok,so this one is real......but the way it worked,it only created like 25 horses in a V8.Zero to 55 was around 3 minutes.You want real increase in fuel mileage.Look into Propane or Natural Gas.Run it as an additive.You can buy a setup where you just plug it into your household gas line and refill the tank at home.There is a 3/4ton 4WD Chevy Maxipad diesel running around getting 60MPG running a CNG fog system.Sure you will pay for the gas but the savings offset the cost in this case.Most of the fuel saver crap you keep hearing about was created to confuse people and sell plans via the mail 30 years ago.It is all a fraud.
 

Rolling_Eudaimonia

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Water Injection will increase your fuel mileage too. But just so long as you use it properly not for extra power but for increased inefficiency in combustion by increasing the air-fuel density in the combustion chamber and allowing the engine more effectively burn fuel. Now on the plus side turn up the water injection and boost and you get serious power! ADD methanol to the mixture in 49% meth, 1% mineral oil and 50% water to the tank and the engine now runs cooler and has a power boast to boot. The mineral oil is for lubricating the pump methanol or ethanol is tough on rubber , bearings and so on the oil helps to increase the life span of your pump.

Perhaps if you used the acetone in a similar manner like water-acetone injection you would see an increase in performance.

Another option is the CNG, I've seen people talking about using water-injection in combination with CNG injection systems to get insane power out of diesel engines. Stuff like 2500hp out of 7l engines. If you use it to only augment the diesel you should be able to get a diesel engine running in a truck over 30miles per gallon average fuel for the same power levels you have in a stock engine.

Myself I want to water inject my Multi-fuel engine and see what happens.
 

Jake0147

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I tried this. The email said something like "add acetone and then shop around to see what brand of gasoline works best with it... And so forth and so on... Yeah, bull hockey. If it works it works, and if I have to shop for a different brand of gas, it's probably nothing to do with the acetone... But, I watch my mileage like a religion, to the point on my commuter car, I can spot a back tire (on a front wheel drive car) that's literally just a couple pounds low, simply by figuring the MPGs. So if anybody can find this thing, I can, right?

So I discovered that A, they are right, there's a VERY VERY noticable difference in brands of gasoline, but you need to burn two to four tanks of the same without interruption so that the adaptive strategies in your car's ECM can catch up. And I doubt that works with carburetors, since it's mechanical delivery, whereas the "oxygenates" and lord knows what else mess with the O2 sensors on computerized stuff to adjust the delivery proportions. That's my guess anyhow, I only checked with my own cars and there's not that much variety in them...

My 94 Grand am (somewhat sadly no longer with me) would do 32mpg all day every day if I always fill up at Cumberland Farms. Mobil for three tanks in a row, it's down to 25. No joke. Others fell in between. And it's a commuter, so it drives the same route, five days a week, and racked up 20,000 miles per year on the same roads, over and over and over...
My new work beater, an 04 Alero does 30/31 if it likes the gas, 27 give or take if it doesn't like it.
My 95 F-150 (very sadly no longer with me) would see a difference, but it's hard to nail down, that truck sat for weeks, sometimes months at a time, short trips, yard work, generally untrackable mileage. Prolly about fifteen percent difference, but we're talking about a truck that that was capable of 20mpg, realistically usually got ten to fifteen mpg, and If I was using it for gathering firewood instead of just carrying it, perhaps two or three mpg. Needless to say, I could be off a bit on this one.
The new truck is yet to prove its self, a '06 F-250 with the ten cylinder. It's a pig. Two tanks each of three brands so far, no difference. Rock solid 11mpg. Unless the plow is on. Then it goes from bad to dismal. I've yet to try either of my favorite two brands however. With mileage that low, I might have to figure in a few extra signifigant digits to accurately figure any gains or losses.

So, all that mileage variation, and no mention of acetone... OK, so after I started figuring this brand thing out, I tried the acetone in the Grand AM. Nothing. The mileage did not change. I did change several fuel filters at the beginning of the experiment however until the accumulated "extra's" in the fuel system were removed. I did that for an entire summer.
I tried it in the F-150 the same summer. Who knows what it did, I couldn't keep track of the mileage in that one close enough to say. But I did go through two fuel filters in short order. That truck only saw 2500 miles that year, that was the the year I decided it'd be a good idea to move this far from work, and then work moved further away from me, so I had to resort to the car as my main transportation and try stupid ideas like this one to save money. Anyhow, two fuel filters is a lot in 2500 miles.
I tried this in my Alero even though I'd given up on it, pretty much only because I still had a bunch of acetone left and what the heck, if nothing else it's cleaned the crap out of something in the other fuel systems, right? Same here, several fuel filters, no discernable difference in fuel mileage.

I'm not sure where everybody's seeing these increadible gains, but I'm pretty convinced that acetone has done nothing for me.
 

bgekky3

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I watched the Mythbusters episode on fuel mileage. It was all about gasoline engines. They proved acetone does nothing to gasoline engines. This thread is about diesel engines and that acetone promotes a better atomization in diesel engines thus provideing a better burn and better fuel economy. I don't think 2 ounces in 10 gallons will kill o rings. I am going to be running a 200 mile round trip in the near future. I am willing to post the before and after mileage and or breakage that occurs. Right now my truck is a storage shed, so everyone will have to wait until I sell my house and buy a new one.

If anyone wants to speed the process. House for sale, deuce parking on side, 1800 square feet, 148,500, but it is located in El Paso, Texas.
 

Jake0147

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This thread is about diesel engines and that acetone promotes a better atomization in diesel engines thus provideing a better burn and better fuel economy.
You are quite right. It wasn't about gasoline engines. While the multi-fuel engine in a deuce is far closer to a diesel engine than it is to a gasoline engine, it is not quite either one. Part of the process is that the multi-fuel engine does not atomize it's fuel. I'm leary about how good an "atomization booster" would help even if it were effective.

Of course I was leary of this in gasoline engines, but I tried anyhow, and for quite some time before giving up. I will certainly watch for results. I quite agree that in reasonable amounts, the o-ring thing will (should) be a non issue. It's supposed to be an issue on my cars as well, but as of yet it has not been. I suspect that you are right, in such low of a quantity, the effects will be minimal if any, and anything that might possibly fail was pretty much gonna fail tomorrow morning instead of this afternoon.
 

davesbf

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when adding different chemicals to fuel we must remember that included in the delivery system are a multitude of gaskets.keep track of an increase in replacing leaking gaskets that have re-acted to these chemicals:roll:
 

davesbf

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i agree that water injection works on gas engines that are carbureted,i got a 25% increase in mileage in 2 vehicles during the 60's.was used in prop fighter planes the way i hear.:-D
 
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