ELSBETT Conversion Technology - Fundamentals

Special requirements for driving with Vegetable Oil

To use vegetable oil as your fuel, ELSBETT offers a conversion technology with precisely matched technical characteristics for almost all regular diesel engines for Cars/Vans, Lorries und Tractors.

Conversion technology is needed to compensate for the special characteristics of vegetable oil:

As the quality of plant oils vary, it is up to the driver to buy an adequate quality fuel. The most commonly used fuel in northern Europe is Rapeseed oil, and there is a special quality standard for rapeseed oil as a road fuel. This should be adhered to, to avoid the most common cause of driving problems.

A good conversion will cater for the other special characteristics of vegetable oil, by including the following features:

Engine suitability for vegetable oil

Most Diesel-engined vehicles which regularly drive longer distances (so reach a good working temperature) are fundamentally well suited for running on vegetable oil. However, to judge the suitability of a particular vehicle, and so to avoid any disappointment in converting to vegetable oil, you should carefully consider the following points.

If you have doubts about any of these points, then you should not attempt to convert that vehicle, and should question thoroughly anyone who tries to persuade you otherwise as to how they intend to overcome these issues.

1. Technical Suitability

We do not offer conversion kits for any vehicles (whether car, van, lorry or tractor), fitted with a distributor-injection-pump made by CAV, Lucas, Stanadyne, RotoDiesel or Delphi. These are not suited to vegetable oil.

However other injection systems apart from these makes are suitable (e.g. Common Rail-Systems from Delphi and Lucas).

2. Condition of Vehicle

The engine, injection system and electrical system of the vehicle must be in good condition. If that is not the case, for example if the vehicle has been run on Biodiesel in the past, then we CANNOT garantee the conversion. If in doubt, then the Decompression and Injection pressure should be checked.

3. Journey profile 2-Tank-System

Vehicles that do not regularly reach a good working temperature by running under load for longer journeys should not be converted with a 2-Tank-System. On journeys of less than 20 miles, the motor will not reach an optimal thermal position. Besides the reduced savings, there may be a sharp increase in possible defects, such as mixing of vegetable oil in the motor oil, or wear and tear.

4. Savings

The more fuel you use, the greater the cost savings and environmental benefits of switching to vegetable oil.

5. Filling possibilities

The more often you can fill up at home, the less you will have to visit filling stations and fill up with petro-diesel (though you still can use petro-diesel)

6. Mental attitude

The more you can approach the conversion with a technically minded and inquisitive attitude, the more you will find the conversion straightforward.

Changes in driving and servicing

Driving on vegetable oil won't cause you any great inconvenience, but there are some guidelines you should follow to avoid any problems:

These requirements are described in detail in your ELSBETT conversion kit, or when you have your ELSBETT conversion done.

ELSBETT and Vegetable Oil technology

This german presentation by Günter Elsbett gives an overview of the development of vegetable oil technology.

This "Presentation for Shanghai International Symposium" gives a brief view in English of the whole subject as ELSBETT see it.