I recently consolidated all of my WVO into a 330 gallon tote as I had been storing it in 55 gallon poly drums. I had six drums which were completely full of oil that had been settling for up to a year in some cases, so the bottom 10-15 gallons was nothing but sludge which I was careful not to transfer to the tote. I consolidated all of the sludge into one barrel and now I need to do something with it. I am considering extending my driveway along the side of my house and I was wondering if it would be a good idea to try to mix the nearly 60 gallons of sludge with gravel, spread it out evenly, and let it polymerize. I've read some accounts of folks who have spread it on dirt roads on their property and it seems to work well. Anyone have a tried and true method?
2003 F-350 FX4 7.3L
Originally I used the cheapest oil absorbent material I could buy, this was 50 pound bags of clay-based material, something luke $3.00 per 50 pound bag. This works as long as the clay does not get wet with water, once it goes it stops collecting oil and gets very slick to walk on - BUT - once soaked with oil IT MAKES ONE FINE SUBSTITUTE FOR ASPHALT. If you walk or drive on this stuff once it collects oil it turns into the consistancy of asphalt but still stays flexible enough that it does not crack when driven over even in winter temps. I filled a few potholes with this about 3 years ago and they are still filled. The clay patches are still there and flat on top even though being driven over about daily, there is now a bit of gravel imbedded into the clay.
I now use chainsaw dust to absorb my spilled oil, this absorbs oil even when wet with water and it does not pack solid even if you walk on it. Once the sawdust has done it's job it gets packed into the cardboard tube that comes inside new rolls of carpet and goes into the wood stove for heat.
A couple weeks ago I had a cubie of veg overturn and dump a couple of gallons of oil onto the gravel along the edge of the street, there is still a dark spot that will cause oil streaks on the road if you drive over it, it looks damp but does not make ruts like can happen after a rain, don't have any Idea how long it will take for this to soak in, it will likely take a LONG time to polymerize.
I suspect that it is more likely the oil will be converted into CO2 and whatever by the microbes in the soil long before it gets a chance to polymerize. From reading it seems like it should take around 30 days for the conversion process under ideal conditions?
oil_spot_in_gravel.jpg (38 Kb, 34 downloads)
This pic is of one of the clay patches. It is in the center of the picture and appears a bit darker gray than the surrounding gravel, the large white stone is in the upper right edge of the roughly one foot diameter patch. Looking closely you can see that the gravel around the patch shows some fairly large cracks in the ground but there are no cracks in the patch itself.
Just a thought - if you mix some amount of the clay material into your gravel before applying the dregs it might act as both an absorbent and a binder, don't know, haven't tried this yet myself.
Oil_soaked_clay_pothole_patch.JPG (37 Kb, 55 downloads)
So far I've done half of my 100' driveway.No dust in summer.
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I started doing this last week and once it seeped in it's great. Too bad I never saved my dregs for this purpose, but now I will.
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'84 Mercedes Euro 300D NA - Custom two-tank
Running on vegoil and biodiesel since May 2006
Ah, now you're getting to the real good $hit, especially if you use blue rock Shale. I have been doing this for a couple of years now and have found 1 strict improvement by accident. If you have a barrel that's about 3/4 full let rain water fill it. When you apply it in the summer time the water really helps the oil to penetrate and it completely negates dust over a larger area.
In terms of application I find the best method is to pour oil then gravel on the road, similar to the paving method of oil, tar then asphalt. When the oil goes down first it holds the gravel in place as opposed to letting it spray under car tires which is the bane of gravel roads. I take a McCloud (flat ended fire rake) and scrape the gravel over the oil and then pack it down tight. Driving over a few times helps too and since I lay the gravel from the truck bed it works well. I would recommend getting something like a planter pot with a bottom that you can remove to pour the oil evenly if you do it this way (also keeps your shoes from absorbing a good bit of oil).
Your road will look better and last longer than any other way if you do it right. I'm off to lay more grease on top as a renewal layer as we speak.
Save your oil - Fuel the planet
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