Why Filtering Biodiesel is Important

How Mineral Filter Aids Help

While producing beneficial biodiesel, filtration is needed to help ensure certain impurities are removed. Phosphorous and soaps are two examples of harmful by-products that can effect fuel production and use. Learn how mineral filters can help produce cleaner fuels and prevent future engine damage.

Producing Beneficial Biodiesel

The fact that biodiesel is made from a renewable resource—a mix of modified vegetable oils—brings about many benefits for the country and environment. However, the process to make this alternative fuel comes with its own obstacles.

Some plant oils may contain phosphorus if a fertilizer was used during production. Over time, a build-up of phospholipid compounds can negatively impact the effectiveness of emission control systems. This is why it’s important to effectively filter this chemical out before making biodiesel.

During the process of making biodiesel, a contaminating soap by-product is formed when fatty acids in the oil combine with water and a catalyst. The higher the acid level, the more soap is made. This soap congeals in filtering fibers, resulting in clogs and longer production time. Then, when the biodiesel is burned in your engine, the soap leaves behind an ashy residue.

By filtering out impurities, you’re left with a more effective product that’s less likely to cause future issues. The material you use to filter fuel is also important. Since you’re already looking for a more eco-friendly fuel solution, why not consider natural minerals as filtering methods.

Diatomaceous Earth Mineral Filters for Cleaner Fuels

What makes diatomaceous earth an effective filter aid? If you take a close look at the substance under a microscope, you’ll notice diatoms have a honeycomb-like structure. The benefits of this structure includes:

  • Filter Cycles. The high capacity for holding solids allows for longer filter cycles.
  • Flow Rate. Diatomaceous earth filter cakes extend the flow rate of the material being filtered without clogging.
  • Porosity. The pores within and between the cell walls are small enough to trap bacteria, clay particles, and other solids.

Longer filter cycles means more solids are removed, leaving liquids less contaminated.

Perlite Mineral Filter Aids

In its natural state, perlite is a dense, glassy mineral formed by volcanic rock. When treated under proper conditions, perlite expands up to 20 times its original volume, making it an ideal candidate for filtering oils. Here’s why:

  • Anti-Caking: Perlite filter cakes remain porous and do not compact.
  • Application: Users can easily switch their current filtration media to a perlite filter aid economically and without sacrificing performance. It can be used with either pressure or vacuum filtration equipment.
  • Insoluble: No matter the temperature, perlite filters are virtually insoluble in mineral and organic acids. However, solubility in strong alkaline solutions varies depending on temperature and contact time.
  • Lower Weight, Same Volume: Perlite filter aids can weigh as much as 50% less than the other types of filter media.
  • Naturally Inert: When filtering through perlite, no tastes, colors, or odors are transferred. This is especially important for food applications.

Dicalite Management Group Mineral Filters

Dicalite Management Group offers diatomaceous earth and perlite to support your filtration needs. Our superior mineral filter aids are lightweight, chemically inert, and form high porosity filter cakes to maintain a free flow of liquid while preventing contamination. Not only do we provide the right mineral filter aids, but our services extend to knowledgeable customer representatives and technical experts anticipating your questions. Contact us today for your free sample and to see for yourself what makes Dicalite Management Group a customer-first industrial minerals company.

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