May 25 2022, By IndianOil

What is DEF and why should I use it?

As environmental concerns are growing every day, the need for a fuel that is sustainable, provides optimum clean energy and delivers maximum efficiency is the need of the hour. This is where solutions like Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) come in. This blog intends to enlighten its readers with what is DEF, its advantages to your fleet and how this can make diesel vehicles viable for the future. So let us first begin by explaining a few basics about DEF.

Diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) is a non-hazardous solution comprised of 32.5 percent urea and 67.5 percent ionized water. It is a critical component of Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology, which has been widely accepted as the most effective means to reduce concentrations of Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) and meet emission requirements by reducing the amount of air pollution created by a diesel engine.

It is neither a fuel nor a fuel additive and is added to a separate tank in the vehicle. There is a certain level of DEF that needs to be maintained in the tank otherwise the vehicle’s performance may be affected adversely and this may lead to a breakdown.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) classifies DEF as non-toxic, non-flammable, non-hazardous, non-polluting and biodegradable and therefore, safe for use.
DEF is beneficial to the environment because it significantly reduces gas emissions that lead to air pollution and it allows compliance with federal emission regulations. Through this blog we also want you to know that the fluid can benefit your vehicle and your entire fleet operations as well. Here’s what you need to know about some significant DEF benefits for your vehicle and your fleet at large.

The major advantage of DEF is how it maximizes your vehicle’s fuel efficiency. Since DEF is made up of 32% urea and about 67?-ionized water, it has high oxygen levels that allow your vehicle to not only have cleaner nitrogen and water emissions, but the combustion itself is more efficient, consequently using lesser fuel. The SCR system coupled with DEF performs efficiently to give out cleaner emissions. In fact, data shows that using DEF can increase fuel mileage by up to 5%.

Because of the use of SCR and DEF, it has been found that engine improvements actually made it possible to get more power from the engine. This result thwarted any concern when SCR and DEF was introduced and whether it would be able to provide optimal power to the vehicle or not. Therefore, the addition of DEF to your fleet will not only give you extra power but will also add mileage to your fleet operations.

As a fleet operator today, with the use of DEF you can be assured of the increased life expectancy of your vehicles. Now, since the engines run extra efficiently so that you can stop worrying about any wear and tear on the engine components which is likely and expectedly to reduce the chance of frequent repairs and maintenance. This will in turn reduce your overall fleet maintenance costs and will help you manage your fleet with more control effectively. Therefore, the efficiency of an SCR engine that uses DEF allows you to worry less about engine maintenance now and in the future.

Nitrogen Oxide emissions are poisonous gases that contribute heavily towards environmental pollution and are often blamed for acid rains and greenhouse gas effects. Therefore, by using DEF you are not only complying with environmental regulations but also doing your bit to protect the environment. Because DEF breaks down Nitrogen Oxide gases into nitrogen and water, which are harmless on their own.

Back in 2010, the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) mandated the use of Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) in all diesel vehicles. However, SCR is not a new invention, in fact it has been around for nearly half a century! And in India with the advent of Bharat Stage VI (BSVI) norms, diesel engines will have to reduce their HC+NOx (hydro carbon + nitrogen oxides) by 43%, their NOx levels by 68% and particulate matter levels by 82%. This is where the role of Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) comes into play as DEF is going to work as a catalyst with Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) towards improving the overall health of the environment and making diesel vehicle a responsible choice and a more viable option for the future.