What comes to mind when you hear “diesel truck”? For many people, the words bring to mind a powerful, free-ranging vehicle.
They may picture a truck that can go off-road with ease, with a smooth four-wheel-drive that can tear across different terrains. It has a clean paint job that shimmers in the sun and is easily capable of hauling a trailer or boat.
Owners of diesel trucks may think of other things, like “diesel engine repairs.” While diesel trucks are powerful, functional, and beautiful vehicles, they can also be expensive.
Diesel trucks, due to their engine designs, often require repairs. Maintenance is crucial to owning a diesel truck. If you don’t take good care of your truck, you will find that it will end up needing repairs.
If you’ve been wondering how to better care for your truck, then look no further. We love our diesel trucks, and we want to help you preserve yours. Keep reading to learn more!
Keep It Cool
There are so many important parts of a diesel engine, but one of the most vitalcomponents is the engine’s coolant. Coolant, or antifreeze, ensures that the engine of the truck won’t overheat.
Coolant also helps to lubricate the various moving parts of the engine it comes in contact with. This prevents damage to the water pump and the cylinder and piston timing.
So, what happens if the coolant goes unchecked for too long?
If you do not monitor your coolant, it can become acidic over time. If this happens, the now acidic coolant can damage parts of the engine’s cooling system, like the radiator.
To prevent this, all you need is some basic diesel engine maintenance. Depending on the type of coolant you use, you should usually check your coolant every 30,000 miles or 100,000 miles. If you’d rather play it safe, you can also check your coolant every six months or so.
Check Your Fuel
Diesel is a more viscous fluid than gasoline. To take away some of that chemistry language, this means diesel is thicker, just like syrup is thicker than water.
Because it’s a thicker liquid, diesel fuel is more prone to contamination and getting dirty than regular gasoline. Contaminated fuel causes poor combustion in the engine, thereby leading to decreased engine power.
If you think that your fuel is contaminated, it’s best to empty your engine of fuel and replace it with more. This can help to alleviate further problems for your engine.
Regularly Start Your Engine
This may seem like obvious advice, but it’s genuinely important. If you go for a long time without starting your engine and driving your vehicle, it can lead to oil oxidation.
What this means is that air gets into the oil of your truck, forming bubbles in it. Those bubbles can lead to a thickening of the oil, damaging its ability to lubricate the engine.
This oxidation can also lead to the emergence of varnish and sediment in your engine. If that’s not bad enough, it causes rust or corrosion to form on it as well.
If you start your engine in this condition, it can cause significant damage and wind up needing expensive diesel truck repairs.
What if you’ve been away from your truck for a long time and you know it hasn’t been started or driven? It’s safest just to drain the oil and replace it yourself. This is a simple, inexpensive task that can help to keep your truck safe.
The Final Way to Prevent Diesel Engine Repairs
Checking on the oil is one of three fundamental steps to take in keeping your engine clean. The other two components are clean fuel and clean air.
Change Out Your Fuel Filters
Change your fuel filters on a regular maintenance schedule. As a standard, you’re best to change it every 10,000-15,000 miles or so. A lot of diesel engines of a more recent make have two filters.
These two filters are your primary and secondary fuel filters. In this system, the fuel needs to go through the primary filter before it reaches the engine. This gets rid of most harmful substances and contaminants.
The secondary filter is usually near the engine. Its function is to catch any contaminants that the primary filter may have missed.
When you have your filters replaced, it’s best to have them done at the same time. If you have an engine system with two filters, you should most likely replace them every 15,000 miles.
Install Effective Air Filters
Your air filter stands between harmful particles in the air and your engine. Because of this, it is a vital component in preserving your engine’s health. Were those particles not filtered, abrasive materials could harm your engine.
As a normative rule, you should change out your engine’s air filter every 15,000-30,000 miles. This can vary depending on the environment in which you drive.
For instance, in the spring, you may deal with an increased pollen intake. That increase of pollen could clog your filters faster, resulting in impaired function. The same is true if you frequently drive on unpaved roads.
If the filter becomes clogged, you can expect worse running conditions in your truck. If it gets bad, you’ll likely need repairs.
Why bother with all of that? Save yourself time and money and replace them soon.
Contact Us Today
We at Diesel Performance Specialists are experts in our field. Our diesel engine maintenance services could be exactly what you need to keep your vehicle running smoothly.
If you are experiencing issues with your diesel engine, call us today at (916) 652-9457.
Even if you’re not experiencing any issues, but want to learn more about engine maintenance, check out more of our diesel engine content. We are always glad to be of service!