How to Keep DEF From Freezing In Large Containers

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Powerblanker DEF tote heaterDiesel exhaust fluid (DEF) is an injected additive to a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system. SCR is a technology that uses a urea based DEF and a catalytic converter to significantly reduce oxides of nitrogen (NOx) emissions. SCR is the leading technology being used to meet 2010 emissions regulations.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has created a set of standards that are designed to help alleviate many of the pollutants released into our air by the exhaust of diesel engines. The first federal standards (Tier 1) for new non-road (or off-road) diesel engines were adopted in 1994 for engines over 37 kW (50 hp), to be phased-in from 1996 to 2000. In 1996, a Statement of Principles (SOP) pertaining to non-road diesel engines was signed between Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), California ARB and engine makers.

Because of these standards, a lot of companies are now in hot pursuit of DEF for their diesel operations including:

·        Caterpillar
·        Cummins
·        Deere
·        Detroit Diesel
·        Dietz
·        Isuzu
·        Komatsu
·        Kubota
·        Mitsubishi
·        Navistar
·        New Holland
·        Wis-Con
·        Yanmar


Companies this size will likely need storage tanks for their DEF that will exceed the standard 330 gallon totes. Many will seek storage tanks in the thousand plus gallon range. In any size tank there are items of relevant interest.

  • If DEF is kept to temperatures between 15ºF and 65ºF (-9ºC and 18ºC), it will last a minimum of 1 year without problems.
  • Big bulk dispensers (1,000 gallons) have internal climate control systems
  • In cold temperature regions it is recommended to store DEF in a storage unit. In warm temperature regions it is recommended to store DEF in a shaded area.
  • New climate control systems specifically for DEF are being developed.


How do you keep a large storage tank protected from freezing conditions? There are options on the market that offer solutions. Powerblanket is one of several companies creating innovative solutions for these types of tanks.

Everyone has to have a solution for staying compliant with EPA standards. A SCR/DEF system or an equivalent, equipped with an effective heating solution is a great way to stay compliant.

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