In 1970 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) passed the Clean Air act with the goal of reducing air pollution from vehicles, machinery, and businesses. Since then, the agency has tightened regulations when it comes to diesel engines.
Prior to 2008, no one had to worry about the emissions that their equipment or vehicles were emitting, however the first move came when EPA required all 3/4 ton or larger to have diesel particulate filters installed. With the goal of reducing engine emissions further, specifically regarding NOx and particulate matter, the EPA introduced diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) 2010. Their studies had found that NOx and particulate matter were linked to different respiratory and cardiovascular diseases that caused thousands of additional hospitalizations and deaths.
With DEF being mandated by the EPA, you will find most new diesel trucks, SUVs, cars, and machinery are manufactured with selective catalytic reduction (SCR) technology and a DEF tank that needs to be filled. The magic happens after combustion, which eliminates the worry of loss power or torque, when the DEF is sprayed into the exhaust stream. Once the DEF and hot gases chemically bond, the once harmful NOx and particulate matter are turned into nitrogen and water to flow out of the tailpipe.While many owners of SCR vehicles have reported greater reliability and longer oil change intervals, it is crucial that the DEF tank does not run dry. Many engine manufacturers have implanted many warning indicators when the DEF starts to run low – and if it gets too low the engine’s performance will drop to keep the speed limited until the tank is refilled. A common assumption is that owners need to fill their DEF with each time they fill their fuel tank, however this is false. Depending on how much you are hauling, the average rate of DEF usage is 2.5 gallons for every 800 miles driven. As DEF has become a necessity in more & more vehicles, the access to DEF has also increased – You will find DEF available at the pump or in jugs inside of the gas stations. And due to the importance of the having the proper mixture to not damage your vehicles SCR system, it is highly recommended you do not try to create your own DEF – Instead look to truck stop, retail locations, and fleet oil distributors to purchase DEF in portable containers, at the pump, or purchase bulk DEF quantities to be stored in a refillable bulk DEF tank depending on your need.