Diesel Exhaust Fluid Shortages: What You Need to Know
As supply chains around the country continue to experience issues, Diesel Exhaust Fluid or DEF is the latest item to experience these types of shortages. DEF is the exhaust fluid that every diesel needs to use to cut down the emissions that come from the engine.
So, what does the DEF shortage mean for drivers? And more importantly, what do you need to do to make sure your vehicles are compliant with emissions regulations while ensuring your business isn’t impacted? In this blog post, we’ll explain everything you need to know about DEF shortages and how they affect drivers across the country.
What Is Causing The DEF Shortage?
There are a few different factors that have contributed to the current DEF shortage. The first is an increase in demand for diesel vehicles. With more drivers using diesel engines, there has been an uptick in the need for DEF.
In addition, the ongoing conflict with Russia and Ukraine has decreased the supply of urea, which is one of the main ingredients in DEF. As Russia is a top exporter of urea, this has significantly impacted the availability of DEF globally. This, coupled with the already ongoing issues with the supply chain, has caused an increase in the price of urea, which has contributed to the rising overall cost of DEF, causing drivers to spend almost double what they once were in the past.
Who Does The DEF Shortage Impact The Most?
The current DEF shortage is impacting many industries, but some more than others. The trucking industry is feeling the brunt of the impact as they rely heavily on diesel-powered vehicles to transport goods across the country.
This particularly impacts drivers who own newer diesel vehicles because any truck or tier 4 engine cannot function without the use of DEF. Older engines are not as affected because they do not require DEF to run, but they will still see an increase in fuel costs.
What Are The Potential Impacts Of DEF Shortages?
If the current DEF shortage is not alleviated, it could have many impacts on both businesses and consumers. This may include:
A Reduction In Trucking Capacity
If there is a DEF shortage, this means that most businesses will need to reduce the number of vehicles they have running, especially if they have newer vehicles. In addition, fewer trucks on the road mean that there will be less capacity to transport goods. This could lead to higher prices for items that are transported by truck, such as food and other necessities.
Decrease The Number Of Trucking Jobs
A decrease in trucking capacity will also reduce the number of jobs available in the industry. This is because there will be less work for drivers to do. In addition, it may become more difficult for new drivers to find employment as the number of open positions decreases. This has the potential to impact the economy as a whole.
Increasing The Cost Of Goods
If the DEF shortage continues, the cost of goods will likely increase. This is because businesses need to spend more money to transport these items. In addition, the price of urea is expected to continue to rise, which will also contribute to the overall cost of DEF and, ultimately, the cost of goods. As goods, in general, continue to rise in price, this factor will contribute to the economy’s inflation.
Forcing Businesses To Cut Costs
The current DEF shortage is already forcing businesses to cut costs in order to stay afloat. This may include reducing the number of employees, cutting back on hours, reducing salaries, or even closing down entirely. This could lead to an increase in unemployment and further impact the economy.
Delay Deliveries & Increase Shipping Costs
The current DEF shortage is also causing delays in deliveries and an increase in shipping costs. This is because businesses cannot transport goods as quickly or efficiently as they could before. In addition, shipping costs have increased due to the need to use more fuel. This is because diesel prices have also increased due to the shortage.
What Can You Do To Prepare For The Shortage?
If you are a business owner who uses a diesel engine, there are a few things you can do to prepare for the DEF shortage. First and foremost, it is essential to check your DEF levels frequently and top them off when necessary. You should also have a plan in place in case you run out of DEF. This may include carrying extra containers of DEF with you or knowing where you can get more if needed.
DEF can be stored up for two years. However, that is temperature-dependent because any exposure to sunlight can decrease lifespan. On the same note, storing it below 12 degrees can also impact the shelf life of DEF. Make sure to avoid storing it in metal because it’s known to corrode many common metals.
It is also essential to watch the industry and the latest news surrounding the shortage. This way, you can be prepared for any changes that may occur. Additionally, it would help if you plan your trips accordingly and factor in any potential delays.
While the current DEF shortage is certainly cause for concern, there are steps you can take to prepare yourself. By staying informed and being proactive, you can help mitigate the impacts of this shortage.
The current DEF shortage is a complex issue with a number of contributing factors. It is important to stay up-to-date on the latest developments so that you can make informed decisions about how to manage your business or personal diesel vehicles best.
At Vantage Logistics, we’re always ahead of the curve when it comes to these types of issues. We will continue to monitor the situation and help companies find the right cost-saving solutions to their logistic matters. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help your business, please contact us today to request a quote. After filling it out, one of our company representatives will contact you shortly.