Diesel fuel instead of bio-degreaser?
Has anybody tried to use diesel fuel instead of bio-degreaser to clean the chain? I’ve heard diesel fuel is also a good solvent and is not as flammable as one may think. Which one is better to the environment?
"Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving."
-- Albert Einstein
I've never tried diesel fuel but it IS fuel and generally a hazmat situation when it spills as opposed to bio-degreaser which is made well, to be (mostly) biodegradeable and fairly nominal on the pieces parts.
Originally Posted by SaddleAss
I just used Finish Line citrus degreaser as a spot remover on my carpet and it works great! I don't think I'd try that with diesel.
Don't use deisel
For all the reasons bulletbob mentioned, plus the fact that there are too many products out there that work just fine.
'If Wal-Mart sold parachutes, who would jump?' Frank Havnoonian (quoting his father) Drexel Hill Cyclery
I've used diesel.... it's wonderful to work with bike parts. Good solvent, not corrosive and leaves a nice very thin film of oil on your parts. You can even have a light ride after a clean with diesel without properly lubing your chain.
Originally Posted by SaddleAss
I wouldn't recommend it, though. It contains oil and it sticks to whatever it touches. It's a pain to clean and dispose.
No, it's not very dangerous as it doesn't make explosive vapors (unless in high heat).
With so many degreasers out there, I don't use diesel anymore. Not having a service station close to me (where I could dispose it as it must), I find it a problem.
Last time, I just used dish washing detergent... the one for clothes doesn't work. It doesn't cut through the grease. Just put your chain with water and detergent in a big beverage bottle and shake. Leave it overnight and shake again. Pull out the chain and rinse it. Now put it back on the bike and lube. Done.
If I'm not mistaken, diesel fuel has some additives to it that you don't want/need in a cleaning solvent. I use kerosene instead. Kerosene has some advantages over water-based degreasers. It does not have to be rinsed off the chain and in cold temps you don't have to worry about it freezing. You can leave the chain in it for long periods of time without worry of corrosion. Also, kerosene can be re-used by letting the grit and dirt settle out of it and pouring off the clean kerosene.
What I do is use a two container method - one for storage and one for cleaning. I pour some kerosene into the cleaning container, immerse the chain in it and soak and agitate it. When the chain is clean, I remove it and pour the kerosene back into the storage container and let it sit until the next time a chain needs cleaning. By that time the dirt and old lube has settled to the bottom. If the chain was really dirty, I'll add a second rinse using a smaller amount of fresh kerosene. There's very little waste with this method. I'm still using the gallon of kerosene I bought over five years ago
P.S. If you're careful and use a hook fashioned from an old spoke to fish the chain out of the kerosene bath, there's no need to even touch the kerosene. A funnel comes in handy for pouring the stuff back into storage containers with small openings.
Lately i have been using an industrial degreaser on my chain (zep purple from Home depot) and can honestly say it works as well as white gas or kerosene on a dirty chain. I think the orange peel stuff, simple green, and the bio-degreasers are useless, they work too slow and leave a residue to deal with afterwards.
Warps dishwashing soap has me thinking though, some of them gives me a rash (i am allergic to strong detergents) so they must be strong.