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What is Gas Oil?

As gas oil can be referred to under a variety of different names, the question about what it is, is often asked. However, if you bring it down to very basic terms, gas oil sits within the diesel fuel family, of which there are two primary types: red diesel and white diesel. White diesel is what is usually referred to as gas oil because of its use in automotive vehicles such as cars.

Both red and white diesel are indistinguishable in their chemical form, however red diesel has had a red dye added to it so that it is visibly different to anyone inspecting it. The reason for this is that red diesel avoids a tax which is put onto white diesel because of its use as an automotive fuel.

Authorities such as the police and VOSA (Vehicle and Operator Services Agency) enforce this taxation. As a result of the taxation there is a gap in the pricing between red diesel and white diesel which makes the white diesel more expensive. Gas oil or white diesel is also known by a number of different names such as ULSD (ultra low sulphur diesel) , derv and road diesel. At times red diesel is also sometimes called gas oil but this may be down to a misunderstanding of what gas oil is.

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