Are you “gellin’”? A Tip for Cold Climate Kubotas

Know your Diesel
Now that the cooler weather is here it’s a good time to look into the fuel requirements of your Kubota tractor. Often the cooler weather lands and we forget that there is a distinct difference between winter blended diesel fuels and traditional summer blends. If your Kubota tractor operates is in a locale where the temperature can drop to anywhere close to freezing, you’ll want to make sure you are not caught with a tank or a jerry can full of summer-blended diesel fuel this fall.

It’s in the Additives
So what’s the difference anyways? Well, glad you asked. Summer or warm climate diesel fuels lack the additives that prevents the diesel fuel from “gelling” when the ambient temperature drops below 30 some degrees Fahrenheit. When it “gels” you’ll know it right away. Not only will the fuel not flow, it takes on a waxy, gel-like, semi solid appearance which is truly an ugly sight when you have 500 feet of snowy driveway to clear!

Gelling diesel gets waxy and chunky

Gelled diesel gets waxy and chunky

Too Late, I’ve got Gelled Diesel. Now What?
The fix is pretty straightforward:

  1. get the tractor into a heated garage or shop
  2. wait until the fuel liquefies
  3. change the fuel filter
  4. drain the sediment bowl
  5. bleed the injector lines
  6. add a good diesel fuel conditioner to the tank

What do you Recommend?
Adding a fuel conditioner will prevent the gel-up from reoccurring and it’s safe to use in your Kubota. Amsoil makes a good fuel conditioner called Cold Flow Improver which is available online. It’s also not a bad idea to talk to your fuel retailer to see if the diesel they dispense is blended for winter or cold climate use. Don’t forget the diesel in the jerry can either. If you bought it back in April (wished I bought all my fuel back in April!), then it’s probably not winter blended. Add some fuel conditioner to it as well and use it up.

Service Department Vic

Related Articles
Cold Weather Starting Tips
Trouble Starting your Kubota? Skip the Starting Fluid.
How to Bleed Kubota Fuel Injector Lines
Kubota Servicing 101: Part 2 – Fuel Filter

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