It now costs over $200 to fill up a straight truck, and pouring 120 gallons into your twin-75 equipped tractor can cost $500. In an earlier post we discussed fueling strategies. If $10 is saved on labor, it is as good as $10 saved on fuel cost. What else is there?
We are not going to list all the well known strategies for reducing fuel efficiency, such as more efficient trucks, driving slower, less idling, correct tire pressure, etc. Many of these techniques have little benefit in the local trucking universe. Often overlooked is what kind of diesel is being used. This is a potential money-saver for you. Think about it.
During the winter months diesel is often blended with expensive additives to prevent ice buildup. Sometimes standard practice starts the “additive season” too soon and ends too late. The difference in cost can be ten cents per gallon or more.
In the warmer months, or warmer climates, biodiesel is an excellent choice. Because of government subsidies, biodiesel is often $0.15/gallon less than plain diesel. Biodiesel gets the same or better mileage and comes with no additional maintenance or other expense. Look for a source, figure out the extra labor cost (if any) to get the truck to the appropriate facility, and make an informed decision. Most wet fueling operations can provide biodiesel. It is your tax dollars that are providing the subsidy, so you might as well get some benefit from it.
So, what is biodiesel? Biodiesel is a blend of diesel fuel with organic materials other than ethanol, such as used cooking grease, canola oil, etc. It is refined and cleaned before use. Here is a link to an interesting slide show about biodiesel:
As usual: keep doing the homework, and you can probably keep finding new places to save money.