Features July 2009 Issue

Diesel Biocides Take On Contaminated Boat Fuel

Biocides tested on boat diesel fuel infected with bacteria and fungus.

Biological contamination of a fuel tank is a true challenge to any boater. Once the tank is infected with bacteria, an absolute cleansing of all contaminating organisms is necessary, or else the surviving organisms will repopulate the tank. Practical Sailor took a look at how fuel contamination occurs and tested six biocide fuel additives to combat a tank infected with microbial bacteria. Biobor JF, Racor, Stanadyne, Star brite, and ValvTect biocides were tested against diesel cultures shown to have a variety of bacterial and fungal species present. Similar to the effectiveness of antibiotics, the effectiveness of the biocides can varying depending on the type of infection they are fighting, testers found.

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