Biodiesel Recipe:
How to Water Wash Your 1-Liter Batch

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It is simple to water wash a 1 liter batch of biodiesel. It will only take a few minutes of your day, but it will be a couple of weeks before it is complete. You will be washing biodiesel once a day for approximately 5 days, and then you will let it air dry for a week or more.

You will need:

• your '1-liter batch' of biodiesel

• a cup (to stabilize the 1-liter bottle when upside down)

• a medium sized container with a small nozzle you can squeeze water out of (I cleaned out a dish soap bottle), or a small pitcher.

• pH strips

• disposable container that holds at least 1/2 liter.

Biodiesel Recipe for Water Washing a 1-Liter Batch:

washing biodiesel

Fill the water container up with room temperature tap water.

washing biodiesel - pouring water in

Tilt the liter of biodiesel to the side, and trickle water into it using the water container. When washing biodiesel, it is especially important on the first wash that the water hits the biodiesel VERY GENTLY so it will not cause an emulsion. Add approximately as much water as there is biodiesel.

water washing biodiesel

Screw the cap back on the bottle tightly, gently rotate it upside down and set it upside down in the cup to rest.

biodiesel separation

Let the biodiesel rest for 24 hours. When you come back it should look like this. There may be a small layer of emulsion.

biodiesel - draining wash water

Leaving the bottle upside down, drain the wash water by loosening the cap on the bottle just enough to let it drain easily and squeeze the waste water out into a disposable container. If you have a small emulsion drain that out too.

You will need to use both hands to squeeze all the water out. Keep an eye on the bottle top, but I've never had a problem with it coming off.

*It is important to apply a steady pressure the entire time you are draining to prevent air bubbles from entering. If air bubbles get in it will re-mix the contents, possibly causing an emulsion.

biodiesel batch settling

Put the cap back on and set the bottle of biodiesel upside down in the cup again. Let it rest for 24 hours.

Now repeat the above steps until the drained wash water is clear and passes these wash tests.

With each progressive water wash you will get slightly more aggressive with the mixing. It will go like this:

1st wash - no mixing.

2nd wash - gently rotate the bottle for 30 seconds.

3rd wash - gently rotate for 1 minute.

4th wash - gently shake for 1 minute.

5th wash - shake aggressively for 1 minute.

If any additional washes are needed, just repeat the steps for the 5th wash.

1 liter batch of biodiesel finished

After you've drained the water for the last time, set the bottle upright with the lid off. Now let it set until all the water evaporates - approx. 1 week. When all water has evaporated it will look like this!

*If you plan on using this in your vehicle, you can check the quality

of the fuel, and you might use a funnel to pour it into the tank as biodiesel has been known to eat away at paint.

Did You Make Your First Batch?

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