What Fuel Does a Tractor Take

Out in the fields you can see tractors hard at work filling up the earth, planting seeds, or harvesting produce. But what exactly is propelling these pieces of machinery? Whether they are upturning the ground or pulling around a cart connected with a universal quick attach adapter, here are the types of fuel that make tractors go.

Gasoline and Kerosene

A great deal of tractors run on gasoline or kerosene. While these fuels are not combined, they can be run in the same engine along with ethanol. Gasoline is the best option if you have to execute a cold start. Some models will allow you to fire up with gasoline and then, when the engine is warm, switch over to kerosene in a second tank.


Most modern equipment utilizes diesel as a fuel source from lawn equipment to the large powerful units. Diesel engines have fewer parts that need to be replaced so they last longer. The exact horsepower diesel provides is dependent on the size of the equipment that is burning it. Also, since it is a more modern piece of equipment, there are more accessories and attachments that go with them.


Propane tanks are another fuel option for tractors and similar equipment. While this option is easier on the environment, it is difficult to keep filled. The issue with this sort of fuel is that the gas must be held in high pressure cylinders. It makes it difficult to use and to refill since fueling stations can be hard to come by.


Machinery overseas, primarily in Europe, use biodiesel to operate their systems. While ethanol is a popular option, some even run on vegetable oil. In some tractors, the set up works much like the gasoline and kerosene one does. The machine cold starts with another fuel then switches to biodiesel to keep going.

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