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Discussion Starter #1
Hello to the forum. I have owned a 1997 F350 7.3 Powerstroke for about 18 years. I don't use the truck often enough and the truck ended up with some old fuel in the tanks. I bought new batteries and changed the oil and filter in preparation for getting it back on the road and the Water In Fuel light came on the after it had run for a while in the driveway. My fuel filter is less than a year old but I ordered a new one and drained the fuel bowl with the engine running to see what I was dealing with. The fuel I got out is bright orange in color, rather cloudy with nothing but a diesel smell to it. There is a very thin 1mm layer of water floating on top but nothing else other than some sediment that settled to the bottom of the jug.

I tried to get a sample directly from the tanks but was unable to siphon any from either tank. The truck was running fine in my driveway without missing or unusual exhaust before the light came on. It is slower to start when cold.

I have less than 1/4 of a tank in the front tank and less than that in the rear. What do you guys think I am dealing with and how should I proceed? Thanks, AG

diesel1.jpg diesel2.jpg
 

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Ever ran any off road diesel? The red die will linger for 4-5 tank fulls

Did you put any additives in?

lastly, it could be rust....
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies. I was afraid it might be rust. The particles have not settled out over the past couple of days so I wasn't sure. Looks like the tanks are going to be coming down for cleaning.
 

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Thanks for the replies. I was afraid it might be rust. The particles have not settled out over the past couple of days so I wasn't sure. Looks like the tanks are going to be coming down for cleaning.
If they are original tanks, you might want to consider buying new spectra tanks and junking the old ones. Chances are they'll start leaking sooner than later especially where the strap contacts the bottom of the tanks.
 

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"There is a very thin 1mm layer of water floating on top but nothing else other than some sediment that settled to the bottom of the jug "

Water will not float on top of fuel -- it is the other way around, with water on the bottom
 
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Which brings up the question, is that a tankful of water with a thin layer of fuel on it?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I should have said I don't know what the top 1mm layer consists of, but it is the only layer to appear after two days of being left undisturbed in a gallon jug. Assuming there is water in my fuel, I assumed the lesser amount would be the water and not fuel. I got a small sample from the bottom of the front tank today and it looked like normal diesel.
 

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A mix of off road(red) and road fuel could give an orange color if mixed to the right amounts
Some Canadian fuels will have the golden yellow color -- have you bought fuel from our northern neighbors?

I would roll a paper towel(white) and dip it into the jug of liquid -- dip in a quick but smooth operation
then unroll the towel on a clean surface and look at the coloration -- the surface liquid will mostly be on the outside roll of the towel
not set the towel on fire and observe the flames -- if everything burns well
Then run the fuel and carry on
You could carry a jug and pull a sample each time you fill up to locate the "polluted" supply
 
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Discussion Starter #11
I don't think it's rust and it burns okay. I'm going to clean the fuel bowl real well and replace the filter. Any suggestions on what additive I might add to my next tank or partial tank?

diesel3.jpg diesel5.jpg diesel6.jpg
 

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Rust would settle out some on the bottom of the jug after a few days
That looks like a pretty nice cake pan to be burning fuel in, ...LoL
may not want to let the Wife see that one
 

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Probably a fuel trucker dumped the wrong compartment, it happens, usually with gas octanes. You probably got an off-road mix with road fuel.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I think that cake pan served a higher purpose today, lol. I believe the off-road/street mix is the answer. Thanks for everybody's help.
 
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