Did you know that your left over cooking grease can save money on car fuel? If you have a diesel fueled engine, then you can be driving your car for cents on the dollar! Any previous used oil, or waste vegetable oil (WVO), used fryer grease, animal fats, lard can be used. Biodiesel is a clean, safe alternative fuel that anyone can make to replace the petroleum diesel that is typically put in diesel vehicles. The procedure is called transesterification. In layman’s terms the process “breaks down the molecules of vegetable oils into constituents molecules forming biodiesel as the main product, and glycerin as the byproduct.” This is similar to the process of making soap.
What Kinds of Used Oils Can Be Used To Manufacture Biodiesel?
- Vegetables Oils (Soya, Canola, Jatropha, Sunflower Seed)
- Animal Fats
All it takes is a few steps:
- Use vegetable oil or filter used oil to remove any food scraps or solid particles (this can be done using a coffee filter, old t-shirt, fine screen or a combination of these methods).
- Heat the oil to remove any water content (optional).
- Perform titration to determine how much catalyst is needed.
- Prepare sodium methoxide. *This is dangerous, so be careful.
- Heat the oil, mix in sodium methoxide while stirring.
- Allow to settle, remove the glycerin.
- Wash and dry.
- Check quality.
*Hazardous chemicals are being used so use protective glasses, gloves and perform the procedure in a well ventilated area.
The benefits to Biodiesel:
- Biodiesel is easily accessible and easy to use
- Smooth transition from petroleum diesel to biodiesel
- Excellent lubrication
- Lower Emissions and greenhouse gases
- Biodiesel is biodegradable
- Lesser dependence on imported fossil fuels
- Increase in jobs for creating biodiesel resources
In this day and time, the world is very aware of pollution and trying to find “greener” ways to live. Instead of throwing that grease down the sink, use it to get you from point A to point B; and save a few dollars in the process. Rudolph Diesel, the founder of the diesel engine, originally planned for vegetable oil to be used in lieu of petroleum diesel so that farmers who lived in remote areas could could get the most use of his engine. Now that dream is finally becoming a reality.