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Old 07-08-2014, 04:56 AM   #1
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Reffer vs. Tractor vs. Diesel #2

I'm new to the world of Diesel trucks and pulling a 42' RV for that matter and am wondering about what type of diesel I can us.

I've pulled into a few Pilot, T/A and Flying J truck stops, taken the path of least resistance and gone around to the truck pumps since I was pulling.

When I put in the card to pay at the pump it asked if I wanted Refer or Tractor fuel. Being clueless I canceled and continued my journey down the road.

The information I can get from Google is that refer is for the fridges behind the semi, doesn't have road tax and is died red and the tractor is "Diesel #1".

Never heard of #1 diesel, any idea if I can use any of this in my F350?
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Old 07-08-2014, 05:19 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by ksaltman View Post
I'm new to the world of Diesel trucks and pulling a 42' RV for that matter and am wondering about what type of diesel I can us.

I've pulled into a few Pilot, T/A and Flying J truck stops, taken the path of least resistance and gone around to the truck pumps since I was pulling.

When I put in the card to pay at the pump it asked if I wanted Refer or Tractor fuel. Being clueless I canceled and continued my journey down the road.

The information I can get from Google is that refer is for the fridges behind the semi, doesn't have road tax and is died red and the tractor is "Diesel #1".

Never heard of #1 diesel, any idea if I can use any of this in my F350?
the deal is road tax. If you put refer fuel in its off road diesel (yes for the refrigerator units on the trucks) and has no road tax and is dyed red and illegal to run down the road. Not sure if it is higher sulphur content or not. If you choose tractor that is the truck and that is road diesel and the one you want. It will ask you for PUC number you say none and it will charge you full road tax. Some places to fuel at the commercial islands you must go inside to pre pay so they can add the road tax to your purchase. Tractor diesel isn't #1 unless it clearly says that on the pump. #1 diesel is almost kerosene and it can be used in extreme cold weather. I do not believe that our pickups are capable to run #1, it might say in the owners manual. Typically road diesel is #2 and then there is B spec diesels that have a blend of bio diesel in it. Usually B-5 to B-20 anything over B 20 should not be ran in our trucks.
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Old 07-08-2014, 05:24 AM   #3
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Thanks Blue Dogs I'd hate to break the new truck....


So did you die your dogs blue? LOL
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Old 07-08-2014, 05:26 AM   #4
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Thanks Blue Dogs I'd hate to break the new truck....


So did you die your dogs blue? LOL
Nope, Blue Heelers!

Forgot to say the # in the B spec diesel is the percent of Bio Diesel B-5 is 5% Bio.
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Old 07-08-2014, 05:29 AM   #5
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refer.. referring to the trailer.. (refridgerated/heated trailer unit) or the tractor.. (tow unit) you require tractor.. non colored diesel.. yes you are correct about the taxes..


NEVER.. NEVER.. put coloured (off road/construction equipment etc.) diesel in your tanks)... the fine $$$$$ and subsequent tank flushing/impoundment of the tow vehicle.. will surely put you in the grave..

Up here.. (Canada) the M>T>O> can and do!!!!! dip tanks on trucks and rv`s.. on a regular basis... LEGALLY with out your knowledge or consent...!!!!!
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Old 07-08-2014, 10:52 AM   #6
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Some places have the dyed diesel marked off road, but it is the same non-taxed diesel and the fine for using is high. If I am where it isn't going to get too cool, I will run #2 (try to stay in that area). It is usually cheaper, but if it gets too cool will gel up and plug your fuel filters. Up where it gets cold, they run #2 in the summer (usually cheaper) and #1 or a blend of the two in the winter. I have run bio-diesel with no ill effects, but mine is a 2008. Your owners manual should tell you if you can run it. I have never been asked for a puc number. I know there is at least one state out East where the big rig rates are cheaper but you need the number(I think they have to file and pay annually) or have to pay the taxed price. In Arizona, if your vehicle is under 26,000 lbs. diesel is cheaper. There are a lot of variables from state to state. My main concern is to make sure I put in the over the road fuel. (usually green as a double check. I try to avoid the semi lines if possible. Many times they take longer to fuel, and will spend a lot of time inside before moving. Even with our 40 ft. trailer and extended cab we can get around many stations.
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Old 07-08-2014, 02:29 PM   #7
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I can't speak for the US, but here in Canada it's my understanding that all diesel is ULSD as it's too much of a hassle for the oil companies to separate and refine the different diesel fuels.

Another comment about winter vs. summer diesel fuel. I filled the tank from a local station that didn't do a big diesel business, and it was warm outside. The diesel was left over from the winter and I had a hard time getting the truck started, had the symptoms similar to vapour lock in a gas engine. The station had a single pump and no marking (#1 or #2)

It's always good to get your diesel from a station that turns over lots of fuel. Here in the north you can tell the winter diesel from the summer stuff, the fuel economy goes down significantly with the winter blend.
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Old 07-08-2014, 03:54 PM   #8
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And always get , and save, your receipts JUST in case you get a bad batch like I did with my previous vehicle...

Didn't stop the problem, but saved me about $5,000 that I didn't have to pay for towing, injectors, clean out, new filters, etc... etc...
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Old 07-08-2014, 04:40 PM   #9
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How did saving the receipt save you the $5K?
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Old 07-08-2014, 04:44 PM   #10
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I spent 30+ years working for a major refiner & I know in Texas both hiway & off road/reefer are the same fuel only difference is a red die in the off road. If by chance you were to put off road fuel in your tank it WILL NOT affect yor engine, contrary to what some will tell you, it will however stay a red/pink color for several tank fills as it is a very powerful die. If thisi happens by accident, info station personnel & you can fill out a form stating it was accidental, pay the taxes, & not get fined if by a small chance you got checked.
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