Diagnosing a Diesel Engine


Diesel engines are a bit different than standard petrol engines, as diesel engines use heat for energy and also need heat for starting, rather than standard spark plugs. If you have a diesel-powered vehicle, note a few tips on how to diagnose problems with its engine, so you know what repairs might be needed.

Engine hard to start

When a standard petrol-powered engine struggles to start, this is often the fault of dirty or old spark plugs. However, since diesel engines don't use spark plugs, you might note if the engine has low compression. A diesel engine needs proper compression of the fuel in order to produce the heat needed for the engine to start and to run. There are diagnostic tools you can use to test the compression of fuel in a diesel engine; if that compression is too low for your vehicle's engine size, you may need to have the engine serviced or replaced.

If the compression of the engine is fine, and you notice that the engine is hard to start in colder weather, the vehicle may need new glow plugs. These plugs produce a small amount of heat that is needed by a diesel engine to start. When the glow plugs need repair or are underpowered for the outside weather conditions, they need to be replaced so that the engine has the heat it needs to produce power and start. The diesel fuel may have also developed waxy crystals due to the cold weather, so that the engine has a fuel pump blockage; the pump can be cleaned or replaced so the engine can then turn over and start as needed.

Engine knock

When a diesel engine knocks or you hear any type of pinging sound, this is often the fault of a fuel contamination. As said, diesel fuel can develop waxy crystals as it begins to break down, especially in colder weather. Those crystals might then cling to the fuel pump so that the engine doesn't get a steady supply of fuel while it's running, so the engine may then knock, ping, hesitate or otherwise struggle to run as it should.

A diesel engine also needs fuel filters, just like any other vehicle, and if that filter gets clogged, this can also cause the engine to knock or ping. Changing the filter, cleaning the fuel pump and fuel lines, and replacing contaminated fuel can often be enough to get the diesel engine running properly again. Visit a mechanic for diesel auto diagnostics for more information.


18 July 2018

Critical Auto Service Tips for Business Travellers

If you drive a lot for business, you probably put a lot of kilometres on your vehicle. Whether you are driving from client to client in the same city or driving across the country, your vehicle needs to be well prepared for the journey. You don't want to miss out on a great opportunity because your car has broken down on the way to the meeting. Hi, my name is Carla, and I've been stranded on the side of the road, desperately trying to reach a client to reschedule. After that experience, however, I decided that I needed to pay more attention to auto service, and recently I decided to create this blog to help others in similar situations. Thanks for reading! I hope my tips help you!