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Old 08-03-2021, 11:53 AM   #1
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Bottle vs pumped DEF

Bout time i put some DEF in my first diesel tow vehicle. I am hesitant to use DEF out of the pump, not knowing how long it sat in there, or what brand it might be. Am i being to OCD, or should I pay a little more for the bottled stuff? PS, this truck cost me more than my second house, so i donít want to screw it up, right?
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:06 PM   #2
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I think itís more of a personal choice, personally I use Blue DEF only, and I always check the expiration date. If you ever have to replace your DEF sensors or heater you will understand. But thatís me. Iím also picky about Mustard, Ketchup and Mayonnaise
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:16 PM   #3
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If it is pumped at a busy truck stop, it will be pretty fresh. Semis use a lot of DEF. And screwing up OTR commercial truck fleets is not a good way to grow a truck stop business.
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:25 PM   #4
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Same here, I leave nothing to chance, Blue DEF from Autozone for me. Be sure to study up on Inverse Julian Dating, it's very confusing but normally at Autozone I can find it only a month or two old, last time it was only a few weeks old. They should also be displaying it out of the sunlight. The first (and last) time I bought DEF at the dealer it was a year old!
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:58 PM   #5
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It may be overkill and unnecessary, but I avoid pumped DEF and purchase Motorcraft DEF direct from my Ford dealer. They actually give me a good discount price on 2 1/2 gallon jugs that is cheaper than I've seen elsewhere for other aftermarket DEF.

Maybe other bottle brands have this too, but Ford sells a reusable nozzle that fits the jugs and allows for convenient, spill-free fills.
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:59 PM   #6
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I have filled up from busy truck stops a few times and not had an issue with codes etc. I was a Blue DEF person as well, but I have the vintage of Duramax that has the filler under the hood and I hate standing on my tip toes balancing a 2.5 gallon plastic bottle without spilling too much.

I think youíd be OK with a busy truck stop, but understand the hesitancy.
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Old 08-03-2021, 01:08 PM   #7
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I have used the house brand from Walmart, Tractor Supply, Rural King and NAPA with no problem. Blue DEF when I find it on sale.

Any sign of crystals ó just move onÖ

Havenít tried the bulk pumps, just havenít been in the right place at the right time.
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Old 08-03-2021, 01:32 PM   #8
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Iím also picky about Mustard, Ketchup and Mayonnaise
Most people arenít nearly picky enough about especially ketchup and mayonnaise, IMO. What they have most everywhere is terrible! Iíd rather eat plain fries than dip them in that stuff they are calling ketchup. And donít get me started on maraschino cherries!
As far as DEF, I think the brand isnít as important as how it is stored and how old it is. I tend to think that any gas station that goes to the trouble of installing a DEF pump probably goes through enough to keep it fresh.
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Old 08-03-2021, 01:37 PM   #9
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Iíve used a Speedway Station near my house for 18 mos. No issues at all. I always fill up about two weeks before a trip in case there are any issues, Iíd have time to fix it.
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Old 08-03-2021, 01:52 PM   #10
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IMHO -

Best and freshest is likely the pumped DEF from Truck stops with consistent traffic and underground storage.

Next is a jug/box with a recent date code and storage in a cool store.

Warning signs - storage in front window where the sun can heat the product - store that is not air conditioned - crystals in the pump nozzle or the jug - unsealed cap on jug.

What can you do? If the DEF is over a year old, drain it and replace with new. A refractometer can be used to test DEF concentration and verify status throughout that year. DEF can last 18 months under ideal conditions or less than a month under extreme conditions. Truly a use it or lose it - YMMV deal.

One fleet owner is recommending that you keep the DEF tank full. They do not run below half tank and top off often. Other folks recommend storing with not much in the tank. The concerns are too much may make waste and too little may result in crystals forming.

Peak now makes Blue Platinum DEF. It is formulated to remove deposits from the DEF particle filter injector area. Keeping the system clean is expected to improve emissions reduction performance. Not for the bargain shopper as it is about $10/gallon.

Please post your experience. Warning, a recent post stated empty DEF shelves at
Walmart in Colorado and Northern New Mexico. Lots of RVers visiting. Pat
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Old 08-03-2021, 01:56 PM   #11
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I used DEF fill at a truck stop just recently. First time in 4 years since owning the truck.

Man it was convenient and fast. Cheaper too. It's urea and deionized water. Not sure how that can get screwed up. Shelf life is like 2 years. I'm hooked
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Old 08-03-2021, 02:00 PM   #12
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What can you do? If the DEF is over a year old, drain it and replace with new. A refractometer can be used to test DEF concentration and verify status throughout that year.
I can't speak to other vehicle manufacturers, but it is not possible to drain the DEF tank from my Jeep diesel and RAM diesel vehicles without physically removing the tank from the vehicle - it's not a DIY, "let me take 5 minutes to check my DEF" project. Once it's in the tank, you no longer have any recourse - you'll use it up or you'll bring it to the dealer to empty it.

Most likely if it's the latter, the dealer will be replacing the DEF injector and/or other parts of the DEF system. Ask how me how I know this (twice).

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Old 08-03-2021, 02:21 PM   #13
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DEF at the pump

I have almost 2 million miles driving Class 8 trucks. All the trucks I drove over the past many years used DEF from the pump. I have pumped hundreds, if not thousands of gallons of DEF into these trucks and have not had a problem. Way less expensive than buying 2 1/2 gallon jugs. I do not own a diesel pickup and never will. Gas power these days for I do is just fine and a bunch less expensive.
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Old 08-03-2021, 02:54 PM   #14
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-- snip -- it is not possible to drain the DEF tank from my Jeep diesel and RAM diesel vehicles without physically removing the tank from the vehicle -- snip -- Jim
What goes in can come out - You might consider the use of a vacuum fluid extraction tank. Walmart sells one. West Marine sells one. They are even on E-bay. They work for many functions. Oil removal from boat engines that are inconvenient to drain was where we first learned of their value. A DEF tank might be easily drained with such a device. Pat

https://www.ebay.com/itm/28346551172...oAAOSw3qVgQG71
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Old 08-03-2021, 02:56 PM   #15
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What goes in can come out - You might consider the use of a vacuum fluid extraction tank. Walmart sells one. West Marine sells one. They are even on E-bay. They work for many functions. Oil removal from boat engines that are inconvenient to drain was where we first learned of their value. A DEF tank might be easily drained with such a device. Pat

https://www.ebay.com/itm/28346551172...oAAOSw3qVgQG71
exactly my thoughts
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Old 08-03-2021, 03:19 PM   #16
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I wouldnít worry too much about the ďquality ď of DEF. I have to use the 2.5 gal jugs because VW put the fill under the spare tire in the cargo area of the Touareg, I donít want to take everything out of the car at the gas station. I buy what ever is the cheapest.
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Old 08-03-2021, 03:23 PM   #17
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I think everyone is overthinking the DEF thing. It is not some secret, magical formula. I found myself out in the middle of nowhere when the def light came on. 2018 Duramax. Unfortunately, I was towing a pretty heavy trailer and went through the remaining DEF before I could get some. Stopped at 2 stations that did not have it. I dumped a gallon of demineralized water (Used it for the coffee pot in the trailer) and a jug of windshield washer antifreeze in the tank. I know, I carry a spare jug of windshield washer but not DEF, duh! The DEF warning went out and it drove just fine for 2 more hours before I came across the real thing. Added the big jug of DEF and carried on. Never had an issue.
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Old 08-03-2021, 05:05 PM   #18
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I dumped a gallon of demineralized water (Used it for the coffee pot in the trailer) and a jug of windshield washer antifreeze in the tank. I know, I carry a spare jug of windshield washer but not DEF, duh!.

Thatís true MacGyver stuff right there!!! I donít think I would have had the guts to do that. The water maybe. But the antifreeze. Yikes!
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Old 08-03-2021, 06:16 PM   #19
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I have used the house brand from Walmart, Tractor Supply, Rural King and NAPA with no problem. Blue DEF when I find it on sale.

Any sign of crystals ó just move onÖ

Havenít tried the bulk pumps, just havenít been in the right place at the right time.


I also use all the brands. And I pump DEF at the big truck stops (flying j, mainly, through the truck lanes). Never any issues.
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Old 08-03-2021, 06:32 PM   #20
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I also use all the brands. And I pump DEF at the big truck stops (flying j, mainly, through the truck lanes). Never any issues.


Ditto. Mostly pump at truck stops (loves) also Ford when I have service done.
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