How to Make Biofuel Out of Restaurant Grease

 
Conceptual photo of bio fuel.  On bright background
How to Make Biofuel Out of Restaurant Grease

How to Make Biofuel Out of Restaurant Grease

Have you ever wondered what happens to your restaurant grease after it's collected? Click to find out how to make biofuel out of grease!

Keyword(s): how to make biofuel

Every day, ingenious people are discovering more and more ways to be eco-friendly. As the search for alternative sources of energy continues, one source of fuel happens to be right under your nose.

Believe it or not, it's quite simple to learn how to make biofuel out of ordinary restaurant grease. Not convinced? Let's take a look at what you need to transform grease from the kitchen into biodiesel fuel.

How to Make Biofuel Out of Restaurant Grease

Have you ever wondered what happens to your restaurant grease after it's collected? Keep reading to find out how to make biofuel out of grease!

What is the Chemistry of Turning Grease into Fuel?

The simple reality is that when you burn stuff in the kitchen, the free fatty acids build up in the oil. To make fuel, you must collect that oil and convert the free fatty acids to glycerin (soap) with a base such as lye (sodium hydroxide).

Next you'll need isopropyl alcohol and some distilled water. This neutral mix creates the titration fluid that helps determine the acidity in the oil.

Mixing the cooking oil with the alcohol will turn it from red to yellow, back to acid. Thus you need to balance it out it with the titration fluid.

The Recipe for Converting Grease to Fuel

Yes, making biodiesel from grease is like following a recipe.

You'll need a drum containing 45 gallons of oil. Getting the proper reaction will require that it 20% methanol. Next, you mix about 1100 grams of sodium hydroxide into the methanol.

While the methanol is being blended, you'll need to make sure that the temperature of the oil is 120 degrees F. Then, use a winch to lift on end of the drum to pour the oil into a stainless steel mixing tank with two stainless steel propellers attached. Make sure to filter out any solid chunks as you pour.

This recipe will end up producing about 40 gallons of biodiesel and 5 gallons of glycerin. Let the mixture sit overnight, allowing the denser glycerin to settle to the bottom for you to drain off later. What remains on top is your biodiesel.

What Does this Process Cost?

After everything, the cost of producing 40 gallons of biodiesel with this process is around 50 cents per gallon. As you can see, this process is much cheaper than the current price of fossil fuels.

The Value of Going Green

Sometimes it might feel like we are at the mercy of the traditional oil companies. Yet with innovations in electric cars and knowing how to make biofuel at home, there is hope that we won't remain dependent on fossil fuels forever.

Learning to make biofuel is one solution to the problem. The inconvenience of converting grease to fuel is a small price to pay for being environmentally friendly. But it requires a conscious decision on the part of each individual. We have the ability and know how to do the right thing, it's only a matter getting up each morning making eco-friendly living a way of life.

Next, check out the top four benefits of biodiesel.

 

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