Troubleshooting Your Diesel Engine

Do you own a diesel truck?

There’s no denying the importance of regular maintenance to keep it running properly. That’s because you work hard and rely on your truck to hold up day after day on the job and on the road.

When you experience mechanical issues with your diesel engine, it’s important to understand how to diagnose common problems. After all, it’s important to be as self-reliant as possible, especially when you’re a long way from help. 

Here we take a look at some useful tips for troubleshooting diesel engines so you can get yourself out of a tough spot when emergencies arise. Keep reading to learn more.

Engine Noise

It’s important to pay attention to the sound of your engine. Does it make strange noises? 

Keep in mind that diesel engines are louder than gasoline engines, but if you notice knocking or inconsistent sounds, this could be a sign of trouble. In fact, these types of noises could be evidence of a bad fuel injector or you could have a problem with the compression balance.

Be sure to have your engine checked by a diesel specialist as soon as possible.

Black Exhaust

Black exhaust coming from your tailpipe is another sign that all is not well. There could be several reasons your truck engine starts producing black smoke, including a faulty turbocharger, air filters, injector pump, injector, or EGR valve.

Never ignore signs of black smoke. The best strategy is to have your engine serviced by a mechanic.

Lack of Power

Diesel engines are known for their power, so when you notice a sudden loss of power and torque, it’s a sign that something’s up. For example, your engine could have a dirty oil filter, clogged fuel line, loose throttle linkage, or faulty fuel injectors.

Once you notice that your truck lacks power, it’s best to have a mechanic look into the problem right away before it goes from bad to worse.

Engine Oil Oxidation

Are there periods of time when you don’t drive your diesel vehicle? If so, you might discover that air has gotten into your engine oil. When this happens, it will create air bubbles that tend to interfere with proper lubrication. This will potentially ruin anything in your engine that requires lubrication.

Engine oil oxidation is a serious development that occurs because the chemistry has altered, and requires attention from a diesel professional. 

Engine Overheating

Overheating is always a potential problem with any type of vehicle. The key to preventing this from happening to your car or truck is to pay close attention to several factors. 

These factors include damage to the crankshaft and bearings, as well as pistons expanding and broken cylinder heads. Keep in mind that this type of damage usually occurs from pressing the engine too hard.

Overheating also occurs because of coolant leaks, clogged diesel injectors, a damaged thermostat, and a faulty cooling fan. These issues can lead to serious and expensive damage to your engine, so never put off getting your engine inspected by a pro sooner rather than later.

Contaminated Fuel

It’s important to understand that diesel is more vicious than other types of fuels. Because of this, it can be easily contaminated.

The most common contaminants for diesel fuel include water, soot, glycol, and dilution. Each of these contaminants is dangerous and can result in serious damage to your engine, especially when they enter the fuel pump or injector. 

That’s why it’s so important to keep your fuel system as clean as possible. A diesel specialist can offer great advice about ways to avoid potential fuel contamination in your vehicle.

Glow Plug Issues

Diesel engines don’t use traditional spark plugs. Instead, diesel-powered vehicles use glow plugs. When a glow plug is damaged, your vehicle won’t start as intended. This can be a big problem, especially during cold weather.

The key to preventing this issue is to change your glow plugs regularly.

Problems With the Fuel Injector

Damaged diesel injectors are another common problem that will impact how well your car or truck runs. In fact, this is one of the most important aspects of diesel engine maintenance.

When you notice a lack of power during acceleration, you’d be wise to have a trained mechanic check the diesel injectors to make sure they haven’t experienced damage due to back leakage or fuel overflow.

Engine Knocking Or Pinging

It’s no secret that diesel engines don’t sound exactly like traditional gasoline engines. But you still need to pay attention to noises like knocking or pinging that could be signaling a major problem with your engine.

When it comes to what to check, start with your fuel supply. A blocked fuel supply can result in combustion issues. It could also be an issue with the camshaft sensor. Knocking or pinging could also be evidence of a bad diesel injector or fuel contamination.

The best strategy for isolating the problem is to visit your local diesel specialist so they can take a close look at your engine before the problem gets worse.

Difficulty Starting

There are a number of things that could make your engine difficult to start. And if you’re like most people, you need to be able to rely on your vehicle to start day after day, regardless of the season of the year.

Troubleshooting diesel engines for starting problems include making sure the engine has proper air compression. This is a big issue during cold weather. The best way to improve engine combustion during winter is by revving it several times once the engine has started.

Troubleshooting Tips For Your Diesel Engine

It would be nice to take a professional diesel mechanic with you everywhere you go. Even though that’s not possible, this guide to troubleshooting your diesel engine will help you solve common problems so you can keep your truck on the road and running properly.

Please contact us today to schedule an appointment to have your engine serviced by one of our diesel specialists.

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