Diesel Fuel Testing Lab Eurofins TestOil Explains How to Take a Fuel Sample

Diesel Fuel Testing Lab Eurofins TestOil Explains How to Take a Fuel Sample

Testing diesel fuel can help avoid expensive equipment repairs, ensure that deliveries meet contracted specifications and prevent vehicle issues during the cold weather season. That said, getting the most accurate diesel fuel testing results starts with taking and shipping samples correctly.[1]

                First, make sure your sampling device and container are clean.  Glass is inert but requires more specialized packaging for mailing. A clean plastic container is fine as long as the type of plastic doesn’t readily degrade. Eurofins TestOil provides sampling containers in 4oz, 8oz, 16oz, 32oz, and one-gallon sizes.

                The most commonly used sampling device is called a Bacon Bomb.[2] It is a plated brass cylindrical device that will retrieve a sample from the bottom of a storage tank, tank car, drum, etc. in order to best detect contaminants. It is lowered into the tank, with a cord that can be pulled to allow fuel to flow into the cylinder. When sampling from a tank, it’s best to take one sample each from the top, middle and bottom of the tank—the composite will provide the clearest picture of fuel condition.

                If the fuel storage tank has sampling valves, samples can be taken from those.  ASTM protocol allows this–provided about 5-10 seconds of fuel is run out of the drain before filling the sampling container.

                Eurofins TestOil Laboratory Manager Dennis Falance explains, “We recommend testing of both underground storage tanks and above-ground storage tanks. Depending on the tank size, testing can be critical for complying with EPA regulations. Testing is also recommended for bulk fuel deliveries to ensure they are within specifications.

                The optimal sample size will vary depending on the specific tests; one quart is a good rule of thumb. Be sure not to overfill the container – 80% full is a safe benchmark that allows for expansion of the contents.

                Because the properties of fuel samples can change quickly, samples should be sent to the lab as soon as possible. Dennis advises using approved sample containers and securing the lid tightly. “All information should be entered onto the Eurofins TestOil label,” he says. “Ensure that the sample is shipped in a proper shipping box and any federal guidelines are followed, i.e., only sending diesel fuel samples via ground shipping.”

For more information on working with Eurofins TestOil for fuel analysis, oil analysis and training visit www.testoil.com. Contact: 216-251-2510; sales@testoil.com.

About Eurofins TestOil

With more than 30 years of experience in the oil analysis industry, Eurofins TestOil focuses exclusively on assisting industrial facilities with reducing maintenance costs and avoiding unexpected downtime through oil and fuel analysis program implementation. As industry experts in diagnosing oil-related issues in equipment such as turbines, hydraulics, gearboxes, pumps, compressors and diesel generators, Eurofins TestOil provides customers with same-day turnaround on routine oil analysis testing.   For more information on partnering with Eurofins TestOil on oil analysis programs or training opportunities visit https://testoil.com. Contact: Michael Barrett 216-251-2510; sales@testoil.com.

About Eurofins – the global leader in bio-analysis

Eurofins is Testing for Life. Eurofins is the global leader in food, environment, pharmaceutical and cosmetic product testing, and in discovery pharmacology, forensics, advanced material sciences and agroscience Contract Research services. Eurofins is also a market leader in certain testing and laboratory services for genomics, and in the support of clinical studies, as well as in BioPharma Contract Development and Manufacturing. The Group also has a rapidly developing presence in highly specialised and molecular clinical diagnostic testing and in-vitro diagnostic products.

With over 61,000 staff across a network of 940 laboratories in 59 countries, Eurofins’ companies offer a portfolio of over 200,000 analytical methods. Eurofins Shares are listed on Euronext Paris Stock Exchange.


[1] For specific guidelines, review ASTM D4057, which covers procedures and equipment for manually taking samples and adding them to the container.

[2] Also called a pencil bomb or fuel thief.

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