March 13, 2019
Running a fleet of commercial vehicles is an expensive business, so we understand why organisations might look for cost savings where they can, be it cheaper AdBlue or any number of measures. As specialist suppliers of commercial fuels, fuel additives and lubricants, we know that better than most.
We also know that fleet managers are under constant pressure to keep a lid on costs, as by not doing so, they can soon start to spiral. But managing costs should never become an excuse for cutting corners, and this is particularly the case where vehicles are concerned.
Maintaining a good fleet is often the lifeblood of a company, so doing anything that jeopardises that, even in the name of efficiencies, is a false economy.
This blog looks at the current situation surrounding cheaper, and in most cases inferior, Adblue products. We'll explore the dangers involved and what you can do to mitigate any risk.
Extra Cost Burden Of AdBlue®
The introduction of AdBlue® for commercial vehicles added an extra cost burden to businesses operating fleets. And with heavy fines in place for anyone breaching the regulations, there is little that can be done to avoid those costs.
That hasn’t stopped many hauliers trying, though. In 2018, the DVLA announced a crackdown on haulage companies using so-called ‘AdBlue emulators’ to cheat the system after finding widespread non-compliance across the UK.
But this isn’t the only way the industry has tried to minimise the impact of environmental legislation.
Spotting a gap in the market, many fluid blenders took to making cheap reproductions of AdBlue to undercut the genuine, branded article.
This, in itself, is perhaps not a problem, as long as the product is labelled correctly. But that is where the trouble begins.
VDA Accredited AdBlue®
Cheaper non-licensed AdBlue cannot actually be legally called AdBlue. In order for AdBlue to be Adblue®, it must be first accredited by the Verband der Automobilindustrie (VDA) – the German Association of the Automotive Industry.
It must also carry the relevant ISO number, proving the product complies with the licensing standard set by the VDA.
Without this, the product is just a urea solution and cannot be called AdBlue. However, some unscrupulous manufacturers are passing their unlicensed product off as the real thing and flogging it at knock-down prices.
So widespread is the problem, if you’ve ever put AdBlue into Google, you will have seen companies selling non-accredited products without even realising it.
Cheap AdBlue Is Fraught With Problems
Using non-accredited urea solutions (cheap AdBlue) is fraught with problems. Firstly, it will immediately invalidate your warranty. If anything goes wrong with a vehicle, as soon as the manufacturer sees you’ve used an unlicensed product, they will void the warranty, leaving you with no comeback and probably a huge repair bill.
Another major issue with non-accredited urea solutions is that it is impossible to tell what is actually in it. This means that many of the products don’t do the job they’re supposed to do, or they do it badly, leaving you in breach of emissions legislation and opening your company up to fines and the accompanying reputational damage.
Finally, it’s possible that badly blended solutions could even damage your catalytic converter. This is in itself bad enough, but coupled with the fact using it will invalidate your warranty, your repair bill will run into several thousand pounds.
Using Cheap Adblue Could Be A Costly Mistake
Buying cheap AdBlue to save a small amount of cost could therefore drastically backfire. Remember, it’s not just one vehicle it affects. If you use it across your entire fleet, then the warranties across your entire fleet will be void.
However, it is not always easy to tell what is genuine and what is not. Not all AdBlues are created equally and with clever branding, products can often look just like the real thing. So how do you avoid buying inferior products by accident?
Buy Your AdBlue® From A Reputable Supplier
The answer to that is to find a reputable supplier that only stocks VDA accredited products.
At Rix Petroleum, all of our AdBlue® products are VDA accredited and this is stated on the labels alongside the ISO number. So, you can be totally confident when buying from us that all your warranties will remain intact, you will meet emission regulations, and you won’t damage your catalytic converter.
But beyond that, working in partnership with Rix Petroleum means you have access to our expert fuel, lubricants and additives teams, enabling us to provide a full solution to all of your fleet requirements.
So, by working with us, you will never have to look for quick fixes to reduce the running costs. Instead, we can help you manage your costs on an ongoing basis and help to ensure your vehicles stay where they ought to be – on the road.
To talk to our AdBlue experts, call us on 0800 542 4207.
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