An informational post from Power Service taken from TDI Forums....
There is a lot of debate and a lot of misinformation going on. Some of our competitors will take shots at us through the chat rooms and this really causes a lot of confusion as they well intend to do.
This is going to be a long answer to your question, however if you do not understand what a emulsifier, demulsifier and a solubilizer are then you will never be able to settle any questions or debates over their use. The short answer is that our Diesel Fuel Supplement and Diesel Kleen contains neither a demulsifier or emulsifier. Please read the following for a complete answer and the reasons.
A Demulsifier, an emulsifier and a water solubilizer are all water dispersants. All diesel fuel has dissolved water in it. The water that is in diesel fuel, in a dissolved form will not hurt or harm the motor, pumps or injectors. Low Sulfur diesel fuel usually has around 50 to 65ppm (parts per million) water in the fuel. When the water content of the fuel gets around 100ppm or higher, the more likely fuel filter icing will occur when the temperatures become severe.
An emulsifier will pull water up into the fuel as small water droplets and often will cause the fuel to be cloudy. In the winter months when the temperature drops below freezing, these water droplets can freeze on the filter face of the water separator causing the flow of fuel to stop, even though the fuel is still liquid. It does not take much water to cause Fuel Filter Icing problems. Also, as the temperatures drop water in the fuel can fall out depending on how much water is in the fuel and how cold it gets, which adds to water problems. Often these water droplets will freeze before they hit the filter and since almost all diesel vehicles have water separators this will also cause Fuel Filter Icing. In the summer months water is not as great of a problem since most filters have a valve so you can drain off any free water on the bottom of the fuel filter, however it should be noted that there is not a perfect filter and all filters will allow some of this emulsified water to pass. As long as only small amounts of this emulsified water get pass the filter this most often doesn't cause a problem. Ford and Chevy are the ones that are having the most problems with emulsified water. It doesn't take much of this emulsified water to cause injector damage in their vehicles and this is why they are very firm that one does not use any product that causes emulsification of the water.
Demulsifiers will cause excess water to fall out of the fuel. This water will fall to the bottom of the fuel tank or fuel system and can cause corrosion, rust, reduced lubricity and in the winter months it can freeze in the fuel lines and prevent fuel flow or also hit the filter and freeze. There are about a dozen demulsifiers or de-hazers on the market. None of them will work on all fuels. You have to test the fuel you are using against the various demulsifiers to see which one will work with that fuel. They are fuel specific and when an additive company says they use demulsifiers in their additives it is for advertisement purposes only. If you talk to any Chemist that knows anything about demulsifiers they will tell you the same thing.
A solubilizer works in a little different way than the other two. It will take the water and solubilize or dissolve it back into the fuel. When this happens you will not have water droplets suspended in the fuel and when you look at the fuel it will be clear and not cloudy. This is the preferred method to get free water out of the system and to keep the water that is in the fuel from falling out. The only problem with a solubilizer is that it works on small amounts of water at a time. This means that if you have a water problem and it is not sever a water solubilizer can work very well, will be effective and will cause no hurt or harm in the system. If you have a sever problem then one treatment will not solve the problem. Solubilizers are meant to work slowly and not to cause the fuel to be overloaded with water. If you know that you have a lot of free water in a fuel system then you should drain or pump the water off and then use a water solubilizer. The good news is that in most cases in motor vehicles water is usually at low levels and a solubilizer usually works very well.
Our Diesel Fuel Supplement (DFS) contains a deicer that is intended to keep the water in the fuel from falling out and to help reduce the likelihood of Filter Icing. Warm fuel will carry more water than cold fuel. When it gets cold some water can fall out of the fuel, or the water separator can squeeze out this water which can freeze on the filter face and cause the fuel to stop flowing through the filter even though the fuel is still liquid. This is Fuel Filter Icing and is often mistaken for fuel gelling. The deicer in DFS can also help to solubilize small amounts of water in the fuel system. If too much water is in the fuel tank it can overpower the deicer in the Diesel Fuel Supplement. So, DFS is neither a demulsifier or an emulsifier.
Diesel Kleen is a non-winter additive and it is intended to give you the very best injector cleaner, cetane, lubricity, fuel stability package and corrosion protection. It will not do much for water and it is not intended to. The injector cleaner is strong enough to clean up a dirty injector to the spray pattern of a new injector. The Cetane Boost will help your engine start quicker, reduce emissions and improve engine performance. The lubricity package will bring the lubricity of the fuel up to the standard recommended by the fuel pump manufacturers. It meets the N14 Standard for corrosion and it will stabilize the fuel. I would recommend using Diesel Kleen in the non-winter months because it has more injector cleaner and cetane boost than the Diesel Fuel Supplement. It will help with a water problem and will also solubilize small amounts of water. It is not a quick fix for a lot of free water.
Our Diesel 911 is a solubilizer. It will take free water and combine it with the fuel so when you look at the fuel it is clear. Diesel 911 will combine with the fuel first and it will also keep the water in the fuel from falling out. It then will act upon the free water in the system. If the fuel is dry and is not saturated with water, it will pick up more free water than when the fuel is wet. A fuel solubilizer will not suspend water in the fuel as water droplets. Diesel 911 also contains a lubricity package to help increase the fuels lubricity since water can adversely affect lubricity. It is not a quick fix but it will solubilize a lot more water than DFS or Diesel Kleen.
There is a lot of misinformation about additives and water dispersants. When you use an additive like our Diesel Fuel Supplement or Diesel Kleen these are mixtures of additives in a package. These various chemicals have to be balanced so they will not separate in their container. It doesn't matter if you use our additives or one of our competitors, a good water dispersant takes a lot of room in the additive package. If you add a strong detergent, strong cetane, excellent lubricity, corrosion, top of the line antigel, and stability to the additive package there is not much room left for a water dispersant. A good multiple benefit package will always have a weak water dispersant package. It is a matter of chemistry. The only way to get a strong water dispersant is to get an additive whose top attribute is to control water like our Diesel 911.
If you think you have a water or water related problem then you need to use our Diesel 911 to get the water under control and then use the Diesel Fuel Supplement for the winter months and the Diesel Kleen for non-winter months. Diesel 911 is completely compatible with Diesel Kleen and Diesel Fuel Supplement and they can be used together in the fuel. If you live in areas where the winter temperatures can be severe then you need to use our Diesel Fuel Supplement. Use the Diesel Kleen in the non-winter months. Also, just before winter I would use the Diesel 911 to help take out the water/condensation in your fuel system. One-third of all fuel flow problems in winter is caused by water. Diesel 911 is the perfect product to take care of this problem. It will solubilize the water back into the fuel so the water will act as a component of the fuel. The water will be in solution and not in droplet form in your fuel. As stated earlier, all fuel contains water. When used as directed it will prevent fuel filter icing problems, it will not hurt or harm your pump or injectors and it is the only practical way to rid the system of water in a vehicle. Again, use the Diesel 911 when you think you have a water problem.
Diesel 911 does not contain any methyl or ethyl alcohols. It is a proprietary mixture containing Hydroxyl Compounds. These de-icers are used in many diesel fuel additives that are currently on the market. You should use the Diesel 911 only when you have a water problem. Some engine manufacturers do not recommend the use of deicers on a regular basis but only when you have a water problem.
As for you last question about DFS, there are no negative impacts on a diesel engine where the temperatures never go below 60 degrees F. In this situation I would suggest using Diesel Kleen, not because DFS may cause any harm but because Diesel Kleen has more detergents and Cetane Boost which will benefit the motor more by cleaning the injectors better, give better engine performance and better fuel economy. Diesel Kleen also will do a better job on reducing emissions and has a better stability package. When you use Diesel Kleen in the non-winter months you will simply get more benefits for your money.
This is a lot of information to cover so if you want to go over any points in more detail please give me a call or email me and Thanks for giving us the opportunity answer these important questions.
Power Service Products, Inc.