23rd March 2018
What is AdBlue?
Automotive engineers have been trying for years to create a diesel engine that produces cleaner emissions. However, with emissions standards everchanging and the complete ban on diesel vehicles soon to become a reality, manufacturers and drivers have turned to short-term solutions.
When diesel engines burn fuel, they excrete nitrogen oxide and nitrogen dioxide into the atmosphere, the leading pollutants that contribute to respiratory and atmospheric issues, hence the drive to eradicate diesel engines completely. Currently, many diesel car manufacturers are temporarily reducing emissions by fitting engines with SCR (Selective Catalytic Reduction) technology, an emissions control system designed to convert nitrogen oxides into nitrogen, water and small CO2 particles, chemicals that form the air we breathe. As a result of drivers wanting to make the most of their diesel cars before they have to convert to either petrol or electric, the use of AdBlue has increased rapidly.
What is AdBlue?
AdBlue is a solution comprised of urea and water. The solution is held within your car’s exhaust and merged with the exhaust system before the nitrogen oxide escapes. At high temperatures, the combustion process turns the solution into ammonia. By combining AdBlue with diesel, it breaks down the NO2 particles into harmless nitrogen and oxygen.
Does my car need AdBlue?
Many older car models are not fitted with SCR technology, and therefore AdBlue cannot be used to reduce exhaust pollutants. However, newer car models manufactured by Volkswagen, Audi, Mercedes, Peugeot, Citroen and Jaguar, all feature SCR technology. In particular, Volkswagen includes the initials SCR in all of its models with the technology. Other car brands will state it at the point of purchase or in the handbook.
Where can I buy AdBlue?
Most dealerships, hardware shops, garages and petrol stations stock it, with the price ranging between £10-£20 for 10 litres. The process of topping up your AdBlue is straightforward. Depending on the model of car, your AdBlue filler cap will either be located next to the fuel filler cap or under the boot floor.
When do I need to top up AdBlue?
A typical Volkswagen will be able to hold 13 litres of AdBlue, providing 8000 miles of driving. The majority of car models begin warning the driver at 1500 miles that AdBlue is running low. If you fail to top up AdBlue levels before they are depleted, cars fitted with SCR technology are designed to disable the engine. It is worth knowing that all drivers of diesel cars fitted with SCR technology are subject to AdBlue checks during their MOT.