If you are a newcomer to diesel trucks, then you are likely also a newcomer to diesel engines. You may think that all DIY repairs on engines and engine maintenance is the same. The truth is that there are some changes between the diesel and gas engines. If you are considering taking on any of your diesel engine repair or maintenance yourself, then there are some tips that you should consider.
Catalytic Converter Tips
The catalytic converter helps to control emissions from the diesel engine into the air. It helps to control pollutants as well as toxic fumes and exhaust. If you think that you are having issues with your converter, you can check by using a vacuum gauge. This will let you know if it is working to proper standards. In addition to this check, you will also want to make sure that you do not have the heat shields in place during any maintenance or repair. It could cause a major meltdown of the system and further damage to the diesel engine.
Start with Oil
You may be hearing noises with your diesel engine that you would not find normal with a gas engine. You may be hearing knocking or even having hard starts with the engine. These hard starts are marked with a jolt-like sensation when you change gears or move. You may think that your diesel engine is having issues, when in fact it may be something easier than that. For this reason, you should start off with draining the oil and changing the filter.
Though this can be said for any engine type, it is increasingly more important with a diesel engine. The reason is due to the multiple parts that help with emission controls that you may not find on gas engines. These parts and controls can get clogged easily with old oil and old fluids. By flushing the system and changing these fluids, you may find the issue is no longer there.
Hard Start Tips
The environment you are in can have a lot to do with how your diesel engine is operating. For example, if you are having a hard start issue with the diesel truck, you may be thinking that the engine itself is failing. The truth is that it just may be too cold for the engine to start properly. You can help this by installing an electrical heater in the engine. This will help keep the engine in a warmer state and help reduce the chances of cold start issues.
By keeping these tips, and the information about them, in mind, you will be better prepared to step onto the DIY maintenance path. Remember, you may need additional parts, and some of those parts may require more knowledge than a simple DIY fix and books can offer. In these cases, be prepared to take the engine in for professional repair.