Will You Actually Get Caught for Filling Your Truck With Off Road Diesel?

Is it okay to run off road diesel?

Off road diesel fuel is designated for non-highway use. This means you can pour it in your tractor, construction equipment, or even a generator. But if you’re operating your truck or car on public roads it is absolutely illegal to run it on off road diesel.

Diesel gas pump | Marius Matuschzik via Unsplash
Diesel gas pump | Marius Matuschzik via Unsplash

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The only real fuzzy area with running off road diesel on road is using it to fuel non-highway vehicles while crossing a highway. According to LearnDiesels.com, you can always run off road diesel in vehicles not designed for highway use. This includes farm tractors or specialized construction equipment.

In addition, you can drive tractors or other agricultural vehicles on some roads. This depends on local laws, whether you are conducting farm business, and how far the tractor’s strayed from its registered address. But if you can legally operate the tractor on a road, you don’t need on road diesel just to do so.

Whats the Difference Between Off-Road Diesel and Regular Diesel?

As stated, other than the cost, color, and usage, there is no difference. Regular diesel fuel has been regulated more stringently by the EPA in the past. Since 2014, regulations for emissions standards, sulfur content, and fuel quality have been leveled across the board for both on-road and off-road diesel.

Simply stated, off-road diesel is not taxed and cannot be utilized in any vehicle or equipment that traverses public roadways. On-road diesel is fully taxed and available for consumer purchase at most fuel stations.

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Advantages To Diesel Trucks

In most off-road escapades, high speeds are never reached. This makes torque a more important factor than horsepower. Specifically, low-end torque output is valuable as it prevents the engine from being overworked as you’re riding through the trails.

This is typically the amount of power that is produced between two and three thousand RPMs. If you plan on going rock crawling or hill climbing, you would want to invest in diesel for this reason. Yet, if you are looking for speeding around tight curves in the swamps, you would be better of with a regular truck as they operate on the higher RPMs to make it through that terrain.

Most people taking their ride off-roading have installed larger tires with treads designed for the type of terrain they are planning on conquering. Diesel engines are better suited to put off the power to move trucks with these modifications.

On and Off-Road Diesel

On-road diesel and off-road diesel are essentially the same product in the end. The required specification for both new on-road vehicles and new off-road equipment is Ultra Low Sulphur Diesel (ULSD) having no more than 15 ppm Sulphur.

Reason #2: Longevity/Durability or Efficiency

When it comes to getting a car that will last through many miles, diesel is the way to go. While some people try to switch out their car around 50,000 miles to save money on repair costs, the joke for diesel vehicles is that it has to reach 100,000 miles of usage before truly being broken in.

Because of how their engine is designed, it is better able to withstand the pressure, the bumps, and the bruises, so to speak. Diesel vehicles are tough, sturdy, and reliable, which is always a benefit when it comes to off-roading.

Source: Pickup Trucks News, Don Johnson Motors, and The Fast Lane Truck

Reason #8: Vehicle Size

More specifically with trucks, diesel vehicles tend to be taller and longer than gas trucks, but they both have the same width. That being said, narrower trails are typically fine, and the height and length of the truck can be helpful with sight and navigation. It also gives extra assistance, particularly when off-roading through hills or rocky terrain.

Source: The Fast Lane Truck

Off-Road Diesel Storage

Contrary to popular belief, off-road diesel also has an expiry date. That being said, off-road diesel fuel may be stored for 6 months to 1 year without substantial fuel deterioration if kept clean, cold, and dry. According to companies such as Exxon, diesel fuel may be kept for more than a year under specific conditions.

Another reason why you shouldn't use off-road diesel in a truck that's used for personal use (besides it being considered tax evasion) is because of the fact that red fuel is highly flammable.

The National Fire Code has classified off-road diesel as a Class II flammable liquid. This is mainly because a flammable fuel has a flashpoint below 100 degrees Fahrenheit. For those of you who don't know, the flashpoint of diesel ranges between 126 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit. As a result, it's classified as a Class II combustible.

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