Fuel additive gets attention with strong showing at PIT’s Energotest

CALGARY, Alta. — When PE Fuels Solutions approached Performance Innovation Transport to get its fuel additive included in the popular Energotest trials of fuel-saving products, company president Christine Teschl was initially greeted with some skepticism.

Fuel additives don’t have a good track record at achieving positive results using the organization’s stringent test procedures, she was warned.

“PIT said save your money, we don’t see many that work,” Teschl recalled in an interview with Truck News. It’s a good thing she wasn’t easily dissuaded.

PE Fuels Solutions can now boast a ‘PIT Power 5’ rating for its FCS-27 bio-based additive, after achieving a fuel economy improvement of 5.2%. PIT’s testing is highly regarded in the industry, as it adheres strictly to the SAE J1321 Joint TMC/SAE Fuel Consumption Test Procedure – Type II protocol. A positive verification from PIT earns a product instant credibility among the many fleets that look to the organization for validation of potential fuel-saving products and techniques. And with that report now in hand, PE Fuels is looking to make itself known to the industry.

“We’ve been trying to stay low on the radar,” Teschl told Truck News.

The company has quietly been setting up a distribution network for its FCS-27 fuel additive, which it says works by boosting cetane, increasing lubricity and generally improving the combustion process.

“Our technology is based on compound catalysis derived from bio-based ingredients and specialty improvers, leading to the highest fuel saving and GHG emission reductions confirmed by SAE J1321test protocol performed by PIT,” Teschl explained.

In its report, PIT granted the prestigious PIT Power 5 designation. This represented a surprisingly strong result, given the performance of other additives in the past.

“Fuel consumption tests conducted by FPInnovations in previous Energotest campaigns with other fuel additives, or special formulated fuel, showed up to 2.86% improvement in fuel economy…However, the result obtained by the FCS-27 additive, 4.9% fuel savings, is superior to the performances shown by the tested fuel additives,” PIT concluded. (Different formulas are used to calculate fuel savings and fuel improvement. The PIT Power score is awarded based on fuel economy improvement).

“It should be mentioned that the tests were conducted with test vehicles having high mileage (as it was requested by the supplier), of a particular make and model, and equipped with a particular type of engine. This result refers only to the vehicle and specimen of technology tested according to the procedure and conditions described in this report. In order to fully demonstrate the potential of the technology for a larger spectrum of vehicles representative for the actual fleet population, we recommend conducting additional testing on vehicles with lower mileage, of different make and model, equipped with different engines, and with different Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) regeneration strategy.”

The tests were conducted in 2014, using 2012 Peterbilt 388 tractors powered by 450-hp Cummins engines. Teschl said the two-year-old engines are a good representation of the current vehicle population in use today.

While thrilled with the validation earned through PIT’s Energotest, Teschl said the results didn’t come as a surprise to her, and were actually short in comparison to on-road tests conducted with Canadian fleets.

“What we have found is, on average transport companies are seeing a 9% reduction in fuel consumption, even in newer vehicles,” she explained.

One of the fleets testing the additive in its operations is Groupe Trans-West. Results presented by PE Fuels to Truck News show an average fuel economy improvement of 9% over 95,000 kilometres of testing.

Teschl said FCS-27 includes cold flow improver, which also has improved reliability in the extreme winter weather. Fleets using the additive in winter experienced no stalling or starting issues in extreme cold, she said. Teschl also said FCS-27 has extended DPF life by up to 80,000 kms and reduces emissions. The company is headquartered in Calgary and the additive is manufactured in Saskatchewan.

More information on the company can be found at www.PEFuelsInternational.com.

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James Menzies is editor of Today's Trucking. He has been covering the Canadian trucking industry for more than 20 years and holds a CDL. Reach him at james@newcom.ca or follow him on Twitter at @JamesMenzies.

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  • This article is right about one thing and that is that users are sceptical and wary of a claim that improves fuel economy through additives. Additives don’t save any money as the cost offset is either the same or higher in overall cost of additive product. The article claims that 5.2% is a great leap in savings as I beg to differ. The article states “FCS-27 fuel additive, which it says works by boosting cetane, increasing lubricity and generally improving the combustion process” but fails to mention anything in terms of horsepower either up of down. With this said I think that the fuel that they sell at any diesel pump is dirty fuel to begin with and this additive is only boosting the Cetane levels to compensate it to higher Cetane. The interesting thing I have found is that most commercial diesel fuel pumped into big rigs is a mix of either #2 or possible #1 grade fuel and I can see why this additive is an attempt to capture market share. Selling #2 diesel fuel is a dirtier fuel and certainly need help in boosting Cetane levels as #2 diesel fuel should be used in diesel fuel heating systems versus in highway tractors. Often you can tell #2 diesel fuel at the pump as it has this yellow shade versus #1 as being nice and clear but they are both sold at the same price. The savings are probably in getting bigger horsepower engines as they don’t have to work as hard as smaller horsepower and therefore adding more additives to the tank of fuel just puts more crap in the air and empty plastic bottles in the landfills. Go green and seek alternatives not adding more chemical to the environment. As they say GO BIG OR GO HOME.