A Closer Look at the Cooking Oil Refinement Process

October 20th, 2018 |  Blog and Used Oil
Cooking Oil

Thanks to years of research and innovation, biodiesel is now produced from a variety of sources, or feedstocks. t Of these many sources, used cooking oil – the feedstock used by SeQuential – is perhaps the most sustainable. It’s created from materials that have already served their primary purpose, which helps reduce the need to grow crops specifically for fuel production, and dramatically lowers the carbon footprint of the resulting biodiesel.

So, how is used cooking oil refined into fuel? Explore the process below.

Getting Started

Before the refinement process ever begins, lots of used cooking oil must be collected. This is often managed through partnerships with local businesses and restaurants that are seeking to incorporate more sustainable practices into their everyday operations. SeQuential uses this approach, regularly visiting a host of clients, from universities to athletic stadiums and beyond, to collect oil that would otherwise go to waste.

The Cooking Oil Refinement Process

After the cooking oil has been collected, it must be tested to ensure it’s free of contaminants. The oil is then dried and purified to remove food particles and other impurities that could prevent its refinement into usable biodiesel. This purification process involves filtration to remove larger particles, as well as heating to separate useable and recyclable fat. Finally, once it’s purified, the used oil can be refined into biodiesel through a process known as transesterification.

In simple terms, transesterification describes a chemical reaction between the purified oil and an alcohol that results in the creation of alkyl esters – which we call biodiesel – as well as a small amount of glycerin. SeQuential makes use of both the biodiesel and the glycerin produced through this process. Glycerin is sold for use in other manufacturing processes, while ourbiodiesel finds its way to SeQuential stations and retailers or into the trucks of the Pacific Northwest’s many diesel fleets.

Collect. Refine. Refuel.

Since 2001, SeQuential has been committed to providing cleaner-burning fuel for a brighter future. Discover SeQuential biodiesel near you, find out how to purchase wholesale SeQuential biodiesel or contact us today for more information about our process.