family auto mechanics - helping you find the problem

family auto mechanics - helping you find the problem

How To Troubleshoot Common Diesel Engine Problems

by Herman Mills

Anybody that has owned a vehicle with a diesel engine can tell you that they're a different type of animal altogether. In fact, it's sometimes hard to know how best to troubleshoot a diesel engine, and many people assume that they don't need to be treated differently than regular gasoline engines. But if you want to be prepared to deal with some of the problems unique to diesel engines, keep reading below for a few invaluable tips that will come in handy when you need to troubleshoot.

Difficult Engine Turnover

One common complaint you'll hear among diesel owners is the fact that the engines have a hard time starting in the colder months. This is due to a number of factors, but if you continue to experience difficult or faulty engine turnover even after winter has passed, then you may want to have a mechanic look at the fuel pump. It may be that the pump isn't generating enough pressure, which is in turn responsible for the engine not starting properly.

White Smoke

Some diesel owners may also see white smoke when trying to start their engines. This is a signal that the engine's glow plugs may need to be replaced. Glow plugs are the source of heat that is necessary to start combustion in the engine, and if you see white smoke while trying to turn over the engine, then it may be time to get the glow plugs looked at. Failing to do so may result in more serious, costly engine trouble.

Engine Overheating

It may be that you have no trouble starting the engine, but that you occasionally encounter overheating once you've been on the road for a while. If this is a case, there are a number of things that you can do to stop it from happening. First, check to make sure that the air flow to the radiator isn't blocked by bugs or other debris such as dirt and snow. If the air flow is not blocked, then you'll want to make sure to do a few other things. Always shift into a lower gear during hotter weather, and always turn off the air conditioning in your vehicle when you go up roads with steep gradients. Doing these things on a regular basis will prevent engine overheating from occurring in the first place and is almost certain to prolong the life of your diesel engine and vehicle. 

If you have more questions about how to handle the special needs of a diesel engine, contact a specialist in diesel repairs at a location like Southwest Diesel Service Inc.


About Me

family auto mechanics - helping you find the problem

As the son and grandson of mechanics, I spent much of my child hood under the hood of many cars. I have listened and learned about so many different problems and how to repair them effectively. I created this blog to cover as many car problems as possible without overwhelming readers. You will find tips for troubleshooting, advice for when to take it to a professional and suggestions for when to stop driving the car or truck immediately to prevent further and more costly damage. We hope that you find all of this information helpful and useful, allowing you to have a great running car.