Diesel LPG Conversions

December 2nd, 2010 No Comments »

LPG vis-à-vis traditional forms of automobile fuel

LPG is a significant progress over traditional sources of automobile fuel. It is considerably more eco-friendly and also in terms of commercial sense is cheaper and than traditional forms of automobile fuel. Diesel LPG Conversions

Modern cars and the catalytic converters

Modern cars are built with an efficient system that can run by burning traditional forms of fuel. However when the question of environmental friendliness is concerned the manufacturers of these automobiles are struggling to find an answer to reduce amount of carbon foot print these automobiles are creating.

Even after placing improved and refined catalytic converters which goes a long way to reduce the emission of these automobiles, the inherent damage done to the environment when the platinum that is used in these catalytic converters is extracted is irreplaceable. Thus the net advantage is usually negligible.

The conversion process

Diesel engines do not have spark ignition as diesel is a self igniting type fuel. However Petrol and LPG needs ignition so they need a spark plug to provide the initial ignition to run the combustion. As such converting a diesel engine into LPG compatible makes the car incapable to run any further using diesel. Unlike in petrol engines which can be retro fitted and made a virtual duel fuel system, converted diesel fuel cars are only mono fuel cars.

The easiest way to do this conversion is by starting with the to removal of the cylinder head where the diesel injectors were placed and bore the machine spark plug holes into that place. This operation is possible if there is enough space for this if not then the spark plug has to be placed elsewhere. The original diesel injector holes can be either plugged or used as LPG injectors.

Fuel efficiency, savings and changes after conversion

Test results in converted cars have not shown a single instance where the diesel / LPG mix have reduced the consumption of diesel by more than 25%.

None of the LPG / Diesel mix systems examined has resulted in Diesel consumption being reduced by more than 25%. Apart from the cost savings as mentioned above, some of the other benefits are as such. The diesel engine becomes a lot quieter after the conversion of the fuel system into LPG. There is a classic knock in a diesel engine which is greatly reduced after the conversion.

As the LPG elements begin its combustion before the Diesel fuel does, the ride becomes a lot smoother. The engine also reaches optimum temperature quicker and reduces emission of carbon dioxide, Sulphur dioxide, metallic pollutants etc to a great extent. LPG being a hydro carbon fuel is readily available because it is a by product of the oil and natural gas production process. Effectively it burns more combustion efficiently and reaches the internal combustion chamber in a much purer form it produces a lot less Sulphur and metallic pollutants.

Disadvantages after conversion

However all being said when the driver begins to use the increased performance that has been built into the vehicle, new problems starts to crop up. Actually diesel vehicles are never designed to handle the performance at this new higher level. As a result one of the inherent qualities of a diesel engine that is its longevity and reliability is greatly reduced after the vehicle is retro fitted with the LPG retro fitting.

On a purely running cost reduction basis adapting the conversion technology for your average diesel engine vehicle does not appear to be a viable option. However that being said researchers around the globe are working on correcting these problems.