Nuclear Nick wrote: ↑
Wed Sep 15, 2021 7:01 am
GTB wrote: ↑
Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:13 pm
As I have mentioned before the BS and EN standards for fuels are pretty tight with little flexability, so if you ever pass a refinery, there are huge storage tanks filled up with unleaded and diesel, at the loading gantries the tankers will be in all kinds of filling operator colours and some unliveried units as well all filling up with fuel from the one big tank!! Its the additives that the oil companies and some supermarket retailers that are closely guarded secrets. Also some loading gantries have no facilities to add Ethanol, or limited to whose additves go in, so a lot depends on the geogrpahical area where you purchase your fuel from.
So if I understand you correctly Gareth, the additives are added to each load at the loading gantries, and the additives filled are determined by the retailer? If so, this aligns with what I've learned in the past, and shared on here when challenging those who say that 'all fuels from all suppliers are the same, the difference is only marketing hype'. I've read elsewhere that additives are a significant proportion of the cost of the fuel and that this is where retailers, eg supermarkets, are able to undercut the big brands.
I've also heard that each tanker is divided into a number of sections that can contain different spec fuels for different destinations. Perhaps you could confirm and/or provide a little more detail?
Hi Nuclear Nick,
Ok easy bit first a typical UK Fuel tanker holds 44,000 Ltrs, some may only be 40,000Ltrs. They have whats called diffrent "Pots" so the full tanker shell is divided into five or seven pots, so pot 1 could hold 10,000Ltrs Standard Unleaded, Pot 2 could be 7,500Ltrs standard diesel and Pot 3 7,500Ltrs super unleaded, you get the idea, by having these pots also helps with stability driving the tanker especially if the driver is doing drops to two diffrent sites. The next time you pass a tanker look at the leading edge at the very top of the tanker shell and there are engraved labels above each pot indicating capacity. And the fuel load and should I say mix of fuel types and quantities will change from delivery to delivery.
Yes, the additives are very close guarded secrets between oil companies and the supermarkets. the overall limits set under EU directives cant be exceeded, but each fuel company uses their own unique chemical composition they believe gives a benefit to the motorist as well of course to their own reputation and bottom line profit.
Some additives are actually injected into the main fuel lines at the loading gantry as each pot on the tanker is filled. For others they have already added their secret additive to the pot in the tanker before hand and its just straight unleaded added to the pot and the filling process and drive and delivery of fuel to the fuel tank on site "Mixes" the additives to the standard unleaded fuel.
Some supermarkets "Buy" fuel in bulk on an open market and that gives them a little saving, at the end of the day petrol/diesel can only come from a refinery and a barrel of crude costs what it did when the refinery bought the crude. I know one supermarket bought hundreds of millions of litres of refined unleaded in rotterdam, then stored and shipped it across and rented bulk storage capacity in the UK that their taners then filled up from, of course renting storage like that risks contamination of the fuel, and maybe you have worked out who that was given the cars that broke down and press at the time, as fuel had been contaminated with silicone that had been left n one of the bulk tanks. Supermarkets tend to sell fuel at a loss as they entice you with savings when you have shopped in the superstore. Even the oil majors only make a few pence per litre on fuel and have done for a number of years now, its the convienience shop sales that make them the money. With government legislation and all the engineering and costs to build a compliant filling station today, you could not survive a day only selling fuel, that why when I started in the industry in 1981 there were over 40,000 filling stations in the UK and today there are less than 9,000.
Hope more of my ramblings are of use and info to you andd others on the forum.