universal fuel pump

Florida Man Accused Of Plotting To Steal Diesel Fuel Arrested

Adding another “Florida Man” story to the growing list, a man in Florida was arrested in mid-September for plotting to steal diesel fuel. Donald Fowler, 47, had been driving an SUV hauling a trailer when he was pulled over by a Polk County deputy; his vehicle had no tags and he was driving without his lights on.

 

Upon pulling Fowler over, the deputy (who was a PCSO detective with the Agricultural Crimes Unit) discovered a 500-gallon plastic tank in the trailer, as well as a transfer universal fuel pump device, a pair of bolt cutters, a pipe wrench, and a glove in the backseat. Fowler then admitted his intent to steal diesel fuel and was taken to jail.

 

It was later discovered that Fowler had already cut the chain in the fence surrounding Putnam’s Citrus Grove, which held a pump shed and several gallons of fuel — while he was detained, somebody else had broken in and stolen around 60 gallons of the stuff.

 

It sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? Logic seems to dictate that, if you’re going to steal anything diesel related, you should go for the engine parts: diesel fuel pumps and diesel filtration systems, or any of the components involved in diesel fuel systems rather than the fuel itself. A fuel lift pump or universal fuel pump has to run for more than “black market” diesel, right? Apparently not.

 

The country has been struggling quite a great deal with people stealing diesel. It’s supposed to be less risky than selling drugs, and the money is easy — criminals can make $1,000 or more a day re-selling the stolen fuel. They certainly have a market for it; around 10% of all trucks sold in the U.S. are diesel engine trucks, and that’s not including all of the construction vehicle and equipment that runs on diesel.

 

Perpetrators of the crime use credit card “skimmers”, which record the card information of unsuspecting customers as they fuel up, and then transfer this information onto the magnetic strip of a counterfeit card. Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Miami are the hot spots for diesel theft, with some gangs making away with nearly $20 million a year.

diesel fuel systems

Diesel Fuel Systems: Everything You Need To Know

You’ve always seen the option when you go to the gas station, but have never really paid much attention to it: diesel fuel. What makes it different from gasoline and why does it matter? Here’s everything you need to know about diesel fuel systems and their role in American society.

How it Differs

Both gasoline and diesel fuel systems are internal combustion engines, compressing fuel and then igniting it to convert chemical energy to mechanical energy. However, their methods of combustion are not the same: diesel engines compress air and then introduce the fuel (air heats up when it is compressed so contact with diesel fuel creates ignition), whereas gasoline engines mix gas and air from the get-go and compress them, then spark plugs create sparks that ignite the mixture.

Diesel fuel is heavier and more oily than gasoline, so it evaporates more slowly. Additionally, it is remarkably more efficient due to its combustion method: many diesel engines get around 45 miles to the gallon on the highway, which explains why most commercial trucks and freights employ the use of diesel fuel systems. As a result, a good chunk of American commerce relies on big rigs that run on diesel.

Understanding the Components

A diesel engine is made up of five essential parts: the tank, the diesel fuel pump, diesel fuel filters, the injection pump, and injection nozzles. The fuel reservoirs are specifically designed from aluminum alloys or sheet metals to withstand the corrosive effects of diesel fuel.

The fuel lift pump pulls diesel out of the reservoir and moves it into the injection pump, where it is pushed through the diesel filtration system to remove any contaminants that may have been picked up during its long journey from the refinery to the gas station — this is vital because dirt and debris could severely damage the injection system and, subsequently, the entire engine.

The injection pump then compresses the fuel in preparation for injection. Injection nozzles spray the compressed diesel into the combustion chambers, which fire (literally through miniature explosions) and turn the fuel into mechanical energy.

Understanding how your engine functions is a key part of responsible car ownership, even if you’re simply driving it as a result of your job.