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I'm on my 12th water wash...
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Hello BD makers. I am on my 12th water wash on my current batch, this is more than double than normal...

Some stats: it's a 40 gallon batch that had virtually no dropout in a 30/270. I did 4 mist washes followed by 6 mist washes where I then bubbled the wash water overnight. The last two washes I added water straight from the hose and bubbled overnight. This equates to me being on the 12th bubblewash presently. The washes have been done with hot water, at least 10 gallons of water per wash. I am also keeping heaters on in the tank as the processor is in an unheated area of my shop. Heaters are set at about 80F/26C. The pHs of the wash and tap waters are not yet matching up. I am perplexed as I have never had to do this many washes. As you can imagine this equates to quite a bit of water and energy for heating.

Has anyone else had to do this many washes? What's happening here? Thanks for your time.


brewing for a 2005 Jeep Liberty CRD with a Fuelmeister I bought from a guy that was going to use it as a still...never did and his mother wanted it out of the house...
 
Location: East end of long island | Registered: May 24, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If your batch is under-converted, you will likely still have mono-glycerides that the 3/27 test doesn't pick up. Due to hydrogen bonding, these tend cause an emulsion with water so you could actually be washing your BD away.

Perhaps you could let us know if you are treating your BD with acid to try and break emulsions. There are differing opinions on the wisdom of thi.s What pH is your washwater?
 
Location: New Zealand | Registered: August 15, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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barley,
have you any way of checking the soap level. With as much washing as you have given it already I would be suprised if the soap was high.

As Paulus said, a slightly underconverted batch will mean that the mono's will also be high.

If I were you I would bring it up to 60degsC and see if it separates. If you have mono's they form a really emulsified layer just above the water, this emulsion is really white in colour and needs to be removed.
 
Location: YORK UK | Registered: April 27, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks for the responses.

Paulus I am not treating the bd with acid. You have me worried with the idea that I may be washing the bd away...? How do I test for this? The pHs are 7.8 on the last completed wash water and 8.3 on the tap water.

Dgs, I have no way of checking soap level at this point. Getting the batch up to 60C will also be difficult as I can't even achieve 50C for mixing, maybe I'll give it a shot though.

Before I left work where my processor is (after my original post), the wash water was up to 8.0 so maybe it's washing after all. I won't be able to look at it again until Monday.

Thanks again for the info.


brewing for a 2005 Jeep Liberty CRD with a Fuelmeister I bought from a guy that was going to use it as a still...never did and his mother wanted it out of the house...
 
Location: East end of long island | Registered: May 24, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Washing with tap water can produce soap scum. That's where a sodium or potassium soap changes to a calcium or magnesium soap. A soluble soap becomes a much less soluble soap. The source of the magnesium or calcium maybe the tap water. Being less soluble, the calcium soap washes out for a long time, many washings. This might be the cause of what you are seeing. I haven't had that problem since I only water wash small amounts of crude biodiesel with distilled water. I've seen soap scum in a common example of ring around the bath tub, that's partly soap scum.
 
Location: Texas | Registered: April 27, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Barley, When you drop out your wash water, are you also dropping out the white curdled liquid at the end? If not you will spend an awful amount of washes to finally get rid of this soap. Drop it out, save it and eventually you will see that biodiesel floats to the top leaving very soapy water behind.
Hope this helps, jim.
 
Location: Cape Town | Registered: May 17, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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Jim, that could be it, in my frugality to not lose any BD I may not have been draining off enough. I'll drain more and keep it to reprocess which I have a collection of anyway. Still concerned with another reply about how I may be washing the BD right out of the batch. Anyone know how to retest for this?


brewing for a 2005 Jeep Liberty CRD with a Fuelmeister I bought from a guy that was going to use it as a still...never did and his mother wanted it out of the house...
 
Location: East end of long island | Registered: May 24, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Barley,
The other thing you need to keep in mind is that if your biodiesel "just failed" Warnqvest, and it is mono glycerides and di glycerides being washed out of the biodiesel causing it to be cloudy, you might have washed out enough mono's and di's to pass warnqvest.






 
Location: ลึก ประเทศอินเดีย | Registered: March 03, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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has your water always had such a high ph? what causes your water to have such a high ph. The more contaminant present in the water the less soap that will be washed out with each wash. I agree with previous posts that say mono's and di's are most likely the source of this problem, a soap test will determine if we are wrong! If it is mono,s and di,s they will eventually be washed out but is it worth the effort and increased energy? I would dry the fuel and use it.


" I don't know what I don't know until I know"
1994 GMC 6.5 Tubo 2005 Dodge ram 3500, 3 VW's 2000, 2002, 2005.
 
Location: Manitoba Canada | Registered: March 24, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Not sure why the water pH is so hi. Could just be a sign of my crappy pH pen. Will look into doing a soap test, otherwise might just take your advice Biotom and dry and use while keeping a close eye on my fuel filter! Thanks again folks, big help!


brewing for a 2005 Jeep Liberty CRD with a Fuelmeister I bought from a guy that was going to use it as a still...never did and his mother wanted it out of the house...
 
Location: East end of long island | Registered: May 24, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
8.3 on the tap water

pH 8.3 is not uncommon if your water comes from sedimentary formations like limestone. That's what tap water here is at. It's great for plants, but not so good for washing BD. You could try rainwater or snow-melt which tends to run about pH 6.5.



 
Location: coldest N.America | Registered: May 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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