Trusted ex­perts

The Weekend Post - Motoring - - ON THE WATER -

In 1985, a dis­pute be­tween the Queens­land Gov­ern­ment, led by then-Premier Sir Joh Bjelke Petersen, and the Elec­tri­cal Trade Union re­sulted in Bris­bane’s Cen­tral Busi­ness District hav­ing the ma­jor­ity of emer­gency power generators in Aus­tralia.

This pro­vided Fuel Doc­tors with its first client – the Queens­land State Gov­ern­ment.

Fuel Doc­tors found­ing di­rec­tor Steve Mar­riott says gov­ern­ment build­ings have dozens of un­der­ground emer­gency fuel tanks, con­tain­ing thou­sands of litres of diesel.

When th­ese tanks are stored year af­ter year, they can ox­i­dise and de­grade, some­times to the point of com­pro­mis­ing the very in­fras­truc­ture they sup­port.

Steve says that up to 90 per cent of re­fined fuel is con­sumed within 90 days of man­u­fac­ture, but 90 per cent of fuel in emer­gency power generators is rarely con­sumed within 900 days. Th­ese facts were the ba­sis of Fuel Doc­tors’ busi­ness plan in 1990.

The preser­va­tion of the as­set – fuel – and the pre­ven­ta­tive main­te­nance and in­tegrity of the in­fras­truc­ture – the fuel tank – form the foun­da­tion of Fuel Doc­tors’ busi­ness phi­los­o­phy.

“With CBD un­der­ground diesel tanks hav­ing a life ex­pectancy of 25 to 35 years and those in high­rise build­ings be­ing 75 to 100 years, pre­ven­ta­tive main­te­nance is of para­mount im­por­tance to main­tain th­ese as­sets,” Steve says. Emer­gency gen­er­a­tor tanks are in­stalled within the foun­da­tions of the host build­ings and are de­signed with ac­cess for reg­u­lar in­ter­nal clean­ing.

Ser­vice sta­tions, truck stops and ma­rina stor­age tanks are not.

Re­mov­ing ac­cu­mu­lated de­bris from th­ese tanks pre­sented Fuel Doc­tors with a con­sid­er­able chal­lenge, lead­ing to the in-house devel­op­ment of a chem­i­cal for­mu­la­tion that would re­lease and safely dis­perse the tank bot­tom de­bris into the fuel for re­moval via cen­trifuge and fil­tra­tion – that chem­i­cal was chris­tened “Fuel Doc­tor”.

With the abil­ity to clean in­ac­ces­si­ble fuel tanks of any size, in-situ, with­out re­mov­ing them, Fuel Doc­tors pre­sented a ma­jor fi­nan­cial and lo­gis­ti­cal ad­van­tage for own­ers and man­agers fac­ing such a dilemma.

Steve says clean­ing nu­mer­ous boat tanks, treated with Cas­trol DFC (diesel fuel con­di­tioner) showed that it was not up to the task of main­tain­ing tank clean­li­ness. “A meet­ing with Cas­trol was con­vened, com­pre­hen­sive field tri­als were un­der­taken from 1996 un­til DFC was deleted and a joint brand­ing dis­tri­bu­tion agree­ment be­tween Cas­trol and Fuel Doc­tors was es­tab­lished in May 2000,” he says. Then, BP’s pur­chase of Cas­trol that same year re­sulted in BP’s Diesel Go ad­di­tive be­ing deleted, while Fuel Doc­tor was still only avail­able through in­dus­trial out­lets. In 2002, Su­perCheap Auto com­menced re­tail sales of Fuel Doc­tor, thereby fa­cil­i­tat­ing a cost­ef­fec­tive, in­dus­trial strength for­mu­la­tion of a sin­gle prod­uct for all fuel types and ap­pli­ca­tions, in a sin­gle bot­tle.

Fuel Doc­tors’ core busi­ness of fuel tank clean­ing en­sures daily hands-on experience by staff, which in turn fa­cil­i­tates on­go­ing research and devel­op­ment of the Fuel Doc­tor for­mula.

In the face of ever-chang­ing fuel qual­ity, and the ne­ces­sity to main­tain clean­li­ness and op­ti­mum lu­bric­ity in mod­ern com­mon rail diesel and petrol en­gines, this hands-on experience and con­tin­ued research is ever-important.

Fuel Doc­tors found­ing di­rec­tor Steve Mar­riott.

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