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Biodiesel Reactor Tank Steel vs. Plastic

The core component of a biodiesel home kit is the reactor tank. The reactor tank is the container where the chemical reaction between the vegetable oil and the alcohol (already mixed with the catalyst) while producing biodiesel is taking place.


Why Biodiesel Plastic reactor

  • Plastic is a better insulator than steel so a plastic tank will retain heat better than a steel tank.

Why Not Biodiesel Plastic reactor

  • Most are not properly sealed
  • Many of them have problem with pressure
  • May stretch when loaded with heated oil Shape changes usually are the main cause for the sealing problems and leaking problems
  • Does not retain heat This can cause a low biodiesel quality since the chemical reaction will not have the optimal conditions and waste of energy
  • Leaks have been reported from users
  • Most of them are over priced

Why Biodiesel All Steel Reactor

Mainly it is because all the things that plastic cannot provide and steel can.
  • Once you sealed the container it is sealed
  • Can stand the pressure
  • No problem with stretching and shrinking because of temperature changes
  • If needed can be wrapped with cheap isolator for better heat retaining
  • No leaks were reported
  • Cost effective price


My personal preference and absolute recommendation when choosing biodiesel kit, is to pick a system that has an all steel reactor tank. I'm not saying that plastic reactor tank cannot do the job, some of them defiantly can. Usually the plastic that can do the job are thicker in order to be able to cope with the stretching and leaking problems. Most of the cone plastic reactors for home brewing that are in the market have the problems that are described above. For me, when I look at the pros and cons of each of the alternatives, it is obvious to prefer a biodiesel home kit with steel reactor tank, in my humble opinion it is better and cheaper than the plastic alternative.

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