Eberspacher, Mikuni and Webasto Heater Problems and Diesel Bug
Winter is coming and narrow boat owners will be firing up their Eberspacher, Mikuni or Webasto diesel fueled heaters. However, the new low sulphur and bio diesel fuel will be more prone to water contamination and the dreaded diesel bug than in the winters of long ago. New EEC sulphur content reduction regulations have seen to that, along with the fuel suppliers now passing their fuels through intermediaries who offer to blend the end users supply to order, enabling them to have higher bio fuel content and lower costs to enable them to compete on price.
Engineers are reporting that while a big old diesel engine may be able to put up with slightly dodgy fuel and simply burn off the contamination through combustion the more delicate Erbespacher, Mikuni and Webasto heating systems may not tbe capable of handling it.
Some boat users are already keeping a separate white diesel supply to run their heaters on having learned their lesson the hard (cold!) way.
First priority has to be to have the main diesel tanks fuel supply polished in order to remove water, diesel bug and sludge. Then a dose of additives (Marine 16) to prevent further microbial growth.
Once this has been done the likelihood of the Eberspacher, Mikuni or Webasto diesel fuelled heaters stopping due to fuel contamination is very small. Any further problem could now be mechanical and time to call in a heating expert.
Fuel polishing starts at £90 (with no fuel loss) and could set you up warm as toast for the long winter months.