If you have a diesel-powered truck, regardless of the size, you know there are special precautions you need to take going into the winter. To help you take any guesswork out of the process, here are the top five things you should do to prepare your motor before the weather turns frightful this year.
Change Out Your Fuel Filter
The fuel filter is the number one freeze point in diesel engines. To make sure yours is in top shape, consider changing it out before the cold weather hits. Look for models like the Airdog filters that are designed to help remove water vapor from your fuel.
Test and Use Your Block Heater
You have a block heater for a reason: to keep your engine block from freezing and to avoid potentially damaging cold starts. Before it gets cold enough to use it, go out and check yours. A multimeter should read between 9 to 25 ohms when placed directly on the plug prongs. If it doesn’t check to make sure the wiring is intact. Once you know it is running correctly, make sure to use it when you are expecting frigid temperatures.
Test and Replace Glow Plugs
This may not be applicable to you, but if your truck is equipped with glow plugs to aid in cold starts, then you should definitely check them out before temperatures drop below freezing. If you have any doubts, it can be a good idea to simply replace them so you don’t find yourself stuck in the dead of winter.
Prepare Your Fuel
Using an anti-gel fuel additive can help prevent your fuel from reaching its cloud point, where it begins to gel up. Diesel is a thick fuel to begin with, but when it is exposed to cold temperatures it can begin to get thicker and form a gel. Needless to say, you want to avoid this. Since the cloud point of diesel can be different, and your truck may be operated in various climates throughout the winter, it is best to take preventative measures by adding an all-season or cold weather fuel additive.
If you operate your truck anywhere that freezing temperatures can be expected this winter, take a couple of hours to perform these basic maintenance tasks. The time and effort you put into it will be well worth it when you aren’t stuck with a weather-related repair or breakdown on the road.