Welcome! Here are the website rules, as well as some tips for using this forum.
Need to contact us? Visit https://heatinghelp.com/contact-us/.
Click here to Find a Contractor in your area.

New transmission fluid in home heating oil tank?

Options
hondamastertech
hondamastertech Member Posts: 1
edited October 2021 in THE MAIN WALL
I have been an auto tech for 15+ years and as being in the trade have a collection of new transmission fluid in sealed bottles. A guy I work with has a 1996 Ford F-350 diesel and adds new transmission fluid to his fuel tank and it burns fine. I have been wondering if I could do the same as for home heating oil. I have a 275 gallon tank for reference. Is there any down side to it or any dilution formula to it? I search on google and all I can find is used oil burners (which are not approved for residential dwellings for insurance purposes). Are there any extra things I would need to add to the system?   

Comments

  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,767
    Options
    Doesn't sound like a good idea. Without any way to mix or agitate the fuel the burners combustion would be affected.

    You don't want to take a chance inside a house with potential combustion or carbon monozide issues
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 8,157
    edited October 2021
    Options
    I have worked on oil burners for over 40 years. My father was in the fuel oil delivery business. in the last ten years of working on oil heating equipment, I have been called to 5 or 6 different waste oil burners at oil change establishments. They have a lot of waste oil and would otherwise have to pay to dispose of that stuff. I digress.

    I have learned tha new motor oil will not burn. it must be used motor oil. I have also learned that new automatic transmission oil will burn right out of the bottle. It does not need to be used or broken down in any way. I guess i'm saying that a quart of ATF in every tank of #2 fuel oil (usually a delivery ranges from 150 gallons to 210 gallons) wont hirt the burning process. The question is Why do you need to burn it in the first place? I don't believe there is any added benefit to burning ATF. So if you think it is going to make a better or more efficient flame, fa-get-a-bad-it.

    If however you are trying to figure out a way to get rid of those bottles of ATF without having to pay a fee to discard them at the recycling center, then by all means add a quart to every tankfull. i don't believe it will hurt. If you get too concentrated, there may be problems burning the ATF because it will have a different BTU value and may affect the combustion process in a way that you may not like.

    Yours Truly,
    Mr. Ed

    Edward Young Retired

    After you make that expensive repair and you still have the same problem, What will you check next?

    ChrisJ
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,850
    edited October 2021
    Options
    There likely are things in both atf and motor oil that you should not be inhaling in vapor form and may contaminate the vent and hx surfaces such as various metal salts and compounds used as lubricants.

    It seems you could sell it on ebay and at least cover shipping if you are trying to get rid of it.
    CLamb
  • cowdog
    cowdog Member Posts: 91
    Options
    Why don't you sell these "new transmission fluid in sealed bottles"? They still worth something to people who need them, like owners of old cars with leaky transmission cases.

    Used motor oil and transmission fluid can be recycled into new base oil, with either hydrogenation (industrial method) or acid/clay (redneck method). New base oil + additive pack = new motor oil/transmission fluid.
    CLamb
  • HVACNUT
    HVACNUT Member Posts: 5,876
    Options
    Why is this a thing? Am I missing something? 
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,566
    Options
    Um... considering the relative cost of #2 and ATF... and the fact that a sealed bottle will not degrade and can be used for years... why?
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    CLamb
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,870
    Options
    HVACNUT said:

    Why is this a thing? Am I missing something? 

    People do a lot of weird things and claim they help.

    I have never used any fuel or oil additives in any car or vehicle. Not once.
    But many claim you need them, they make things "better".


    Any time I've had a dirty carburetor or a dirty fuel injector the only solution was to tear it apart and physically clean and repair it.

    Water, sludge, gelling etc in the tank is a whole other story and I believe there are solutions in a bottle for that.

    But yeah, I stand by that. People love additives.

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,505
    Options
    Find a mechanic shop with a waste oil burner. They'd be happy to take it for free.

    There was an error rendering this rich post.

  • Thanimal
    Thanimal Member Posts: 1
    Options
    ppl like to add lubricity for the pumps sake.
  • Solid_Fuel_Man
    Solid_Fuel_Man Member Posts: 2,646
    Options
    After seeing all the sludge in used heating oil tanks which i have removed....I'm quite sure ATF is by FAR cleaner than what we put in out oil tanks to burn. I'm sure many guys on here know that. 

    Was an ASE master for almost 20 years, let the cert slip after I got out of the automotive world. I've since worked on many waste oil burners, as well as many fuel oil burners. Only real difference is the waste oil has vildly varying viscosity as well as soot, lubrication properties, while fuel oil is relatively consistent. 

    Heck I knew a guy who made "black diesel" out of used motor oil and ran it in his farm tractors. Scary, but he is still doing it, and was 20 years ago. 

    While I'd try and sell the ATF in a yard sale, or on Facebook, eBay etc. I've disposed of some oil in my fuel oil tank....
    Serving Northern Maine HVAC & Controls. I burn wood, it smells good!
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,394
    Options
    The issues with motor oils and waste oil burners is the flash point of the various oils. Petro based oil start breaking down as soon as it is installed, synthetics run out much longer before they start breaking down.
    as they breakdown, flash point drops and they burn off in the cylinder walls, etc. loosing lubrication properties. The Clean Burn folks explained this to me when we had issues with light off. It was in a trucking company repair shop and they dumped mainly synthetics in the tank.

    New petro based motor oils run 390 -440F flash point. Synthetics around 450-500, premium blends even higher.

    ATF has a flash point around 275F so burn wise it may work, it's the additives they put into it that may not be friendly to burners.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Solid_Fuel_Manmattmia2
  • Solid_Fuel_Man
    Solid_Fuel_Man Member Posts: 2,646
    Options
    That's why all the electric heaters in a Clean Burn burner. I never knew that. Always assumed it was to lower the viscosity for better atomization. 

    Thanks Bob! 
    Serving Northern Maine HVAC & Controls. I burn wood, it smells good!
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,394
    Options

    That's why all the electric heaters in a Clean Burn burner. I never knew that. Always assumed it was to lower the viscosity for better atomization. 

    Thanks Bob! 

    That was one work around, they had us crank those pre-heaters up.

    The biggest issue with burning waste oil is that tank becomes the shop sewer, in some cases.
    Paint thinner, brake fluid, drain oil, parts cleaner fluid, grease, gear oil, glycols that are mixed in drain oil occasionally, sour diesel, you name it.

    I'd have the shop foreman watch me do the first clean out, and tell him plan on a monthly mess like this for you to clean out if you want to burn crap. Else the shop gets cold. Once a mechanic works over a radiant slab, they get pretty spoiled.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Solid_Fuel_Man
  • Solid_Fuel_Man
    Solid_Fuel_Man Member Posts: 2,646
    Options
    I've worked on 2 Clean  Burn brand boilers. I never knew they made a boiler. Same burner as their hanging furnaces. Don't know who actually made the boiler, was a Euro swing door design. 

    I'd love to have me one of those for my shop!
    Serving Northern Maine HVAC & Controls. I burn wood, it smells good!
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,394
    Options

    I've worked on 2 Clean  Burn brand boilers. I never knew they made a boiler. Same burner as their hanging furnaces. Don't know who actually made the boiler, was a Euro swing door design. 

    I'd love to have me one of those for my shop!

    The dealer I bought them from also sold AquaTherm outdoor boilers. He would put those oil guns into the wood burners for dual fuel use :)

    I think Clean Burn build their own boiler. It's mainly a loop of steel pipe wound up inside the box.

    As I recall the Reznors used a Buderus block for their waste oil offering. Maybe the same boiler block that Pellergy would stick those pellet burners into?
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Solid_Fuel_Man
  • wmgeorge
    wmgeorge Member Posts: 222
    Options
    We are discussing a new unopened 1 Qt bottle of Transmission oil, in 250 gallons of #2 fuel oil, not a waste oil burner.
    Old retired Commercial HVAC/R guy in Iowa. Master electrician.
  • Solid_Fuel_Man
    Solid_Fuel_Man Member Posts: 2,646
    Options
    Well the OP is a one post wonder as of yet. I think we all gave him his answer/our opinions. 
    Serving Northern Maine HVAC & Controls. I burn wood, it smells good!