Burning Biodiesel In A Wick Style Lamp Experiment

A while ago I decided to see how well Biodiesel would burn in one of our small wick style Biodiesel lamps. I loaded it up with Biodiesel, installed the wick, lit it up & let it burn.

My goal was to see how long it would go. Along the way I snapped several pictures of it.

I started burning the lamp at 1:50 pm and away we went!
Biodiesel Lamp Wick 1:50

3:44 pm and it was still burning really well and seemed to have barely used any fuel.
Biodiesel Lamp Wick 3:44

By 4:55 pm I could see that it had burned up about 1/4 to 1/5 of the fuel in the lamp but it was still burning great!
Biodiesel Lamp Wick 4:55

5:40 pm, roughly an hour later, it was still burning well but the flame had gotten slightly shorter. Fuel level still looked to be about 1/4 down.
Biodiesel Lamp Wick 5:40

6:11 pm and it’s still burning strong, fuel level was just below the 1/4 mark. At this point it’s been burning for about 5.5 hours.
Biodiesel Lamp Wick 6:11

7:34 pm rolls around and it’s still burning great!
Biodiesel Lamp Wick 7:34

8:06 pm, roughly 6 hours of burn time and it’s still burning quite well. We’re now a 1/4″ down from the 1/4 full mark.
Biodiesel Lamp Wick 8:06

9:51 pm, 8 hours from the time I started, and it’s still burning, but the flame is starting to get noticeably shorter nd the fuel level is nearing 1/2 full.
Biodiesel Lamp Wick 9:51

10:50 pm, a full 9 hours of burn time, and the flame is starting to dwindle. It’s looking more like a small candle flame at this point and the fuel level is nearing ever closer to the 1/2 full mark.
Biodiesel Lamp Wick 10:50

At this point, I put the flame out & called it a success! The flame burned a full 9 hours without any problems at all.

Things noted:
Little to no smoke:
– The lamp burned VERY clean and produced zero smoke! There was a slight smell emanating from it, but nothing stronger than say what a candle might smell like.
– I repeated the same experiment using kerosene in the lamp and the smoke & smell were so bad that I immediately had to move it outside.
Burning Kerosene

Long Burn Time
The lamp easily burned for a good, solid 9 hours. I’m guessing Kerosene would probably burn equally as long, but it would’ve made a much bigger mess & left a nasty smell in the room

Bad Wicking At Half-Way
After the fuel level was down to 1/2 way, I noticed that the Biodiesel had a pretty hard time wicking on the wick and my flame size dropped down quite a bit. Also, due to the lack of wicking happening, I noticed that my wick was starting to burn up as well.

Overall, the test was a success. It showed that Biodiesel can definitely burn well in a wicking lamp, however, the fuel level has to be watched if you want a decent sized flame. Pretty neat stuff!

About Utah Biodiesel Supply

Utah Biodiesel Supply is an industry leader in offering innovative ways to empower our customers to produce Biodiesel. From free online instructional videos on how to get started making this great renewable fuel to promotional items to help our customers proclaim their energy independence, Utah Biodiesel Supply has it covered. With the widest selection available of Biodiesel equipment, supplies, and promotional items, you're sure to learn something new about Biodiesel every time you visit.

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