Forté Technical Tips – How to remove AdBlue crystals in commercial vehicles

Wondering how to remove AdBlue crystals from commercial vehicles the quick and easy way? That’s where our innovative AdBlue solutions can help you. Join us as we discuss what crystallisation is, the causes, signs to look out for and the Forte solution to all your crystallisation problems.

What is crystallisation in Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR)?

Simply put, crystallisation in SCR refers to the formation of crystal deposits on the surfaces of the catalyst within the SCR system. 

What causes crystallisation?

AdBlue crystals are primarily caused by the reaction of ammonia-based reductants, such as urea or ammonia, under certain conditions. While crystallisation is more likely to occur in colder temperatures, it can also affect vehicles that mainly run in cities and towns at low speeds, causing a high cost for their owners.

Crystallisation formed in the ad blue tank

How does crystallisation impact the AdBlue tank?

When crystals form in the AdBlue tank, lines and pump it can cause damage and prevent the level sensor in the tank performing properly. As a result, when the vehicle is filled with AdBlue, it will not register the fill and report that the tank is empty, stopping the system and vehicle working. This leads to many mechanics wanting to understand how best to remove AdBlue crystals to ensure vehicles run smoothly and replacement tanks do not need to be ordered. 

What are the tell-tale signs of crystallisation build-up in an SCR system?

Before understanding how to remove AdBlue crystals, it also helps to understand the signs of crystallisation build-up. These include; 

  • Reduced NOx reduction efficiency
  • Increased NOx emissions
  • Unusual odours like ammonia
  • Altered engine performance
  • Warning lights or fault codes
  • Visible smoke or fumes
  • System error messages 

Regular monitoring and maintenance are crucial for early detection and resolution of these issues. Here at Forté, we believe it’s all about prevention…

Crystallisation in vehicle

Is crystallisation preventable?

Yes, crystallisation in SCR systems is preventable through proactive maintenance measures. Cleaning the oil and fuel system at regular intervals will maintain oil system cleanliness and efficiency, fuel injector spray patterns and operation. This in turn will maintain exhaust gas temperatures to aid the operation of the SCR catalyst and reduce system faults. 

When trying to better understand how to remove AdBlue crystals, adding our Exhaust Crystal Preventer in the Adblue system at every refill, will prevent crystallisation build-up and reduce component failure.

How to use our products to remove AdBlue crystals

We recommend using Forté Advanced Diesel Fuel Conditioner to clean the fuel system at regular intervals and maintain fuel system cleanliness, efficiency and restore fuel injector spray patterns and operation. This will help to maintain exhaust gas temperatures to aid the operation of the SCR catalyst and reduce system faults. 

In addition, using Forté Exhaust Crystal Preventer in the AdBlue system will prevent crystallisation and reduce component failure. We recommend using these products alongside each other for the best performance, and in between services, when refilling the AdBlue tank, add Forté Exhaust Crystal Preventer directly to the AdBlue tank. 

Remove AdBlue crystals with Forté lubricants

When it comes to understanding how to remove AdBlue crystals, our products and expert advice can help prevent, reduce and fix the effects crystallisation can have on vehicles. If you’re looking to ensure maximum engine performance and an improved customer experience all round, choose Forté. To find out more, contact us.