Diesel operators know that winter is the hardest time on an engine. Extreme temperatures and icy conditions can cause issues when an engine hasn’t been running. Being proactive with engine maintenance and cold-weather preparations can be the difference between getting on the road or being stranded.
Keep the Heat
A diesel fuel heater is an essential part of keeping the engine functioning in the frigid winter months. This small, easy to install part will raise the fuel temperature and adjust the viscosity allowing fuel to flow easily through the engine so it can start and run more efficiently.
Many engines are equipped with a block heater that can be plugged in and allow the engine to stay warm enough to start quickly. This will also ensure that warm air flows through the heating vents faster. It is important to check these systems regularly as temperatures drop to ensure the vehicle stays in good shape and is ready to roll out when needed.
Check the Battery
Using a multimeter or taking the battery into an auto parts store are both simple, effective ways to check the charge on a battery. Also, check the batteries connections, making sure they are clean and free of corrosion to ensure a solid connection between the battery and the cables. If a battery is reading low, replace it before severe cold weather hits to keep things running smoothly.
Manage the Fuel
With diesel’s tendency to imitate molasses in the cold, adding an anti-gel fuel additive is a common and inexpensive way to keep fuel flowing freely in the engine. Some work well for any season while other additives are best only during cold weather.
Another way to prepare an engine for icy times is to change the fuel filter. The fuel left in the filter may freeze as it sets overnight. Making these steps a part of routine winter engine prep may save a lot of time and keep drivers from ending up stranded.