Alexa How to Keep Your Diesel Engine Running in Freezing Weather
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How to Keep Your Diesel Engine Running in Freezing Weather

Oil And Gas

How to Keep Your Diesel Engine Running in Freezing Weather

Can you imagine a world where global shipping does not play a central role? It seems almost impossible, given how it is woven into the very fabric of our lives. For the most part, diesel-powered engines move goods and service providers around the world. But cold weather can wreak havoc on diesel engines.

The recent deep freeze in Texas has shown how reliant we are on reliable and extensive supply chains. It only takes one little glitch in the supply chain to throw the system off, which could mean disaster for a whole population, leaving people stranded without vital goods. 

With the importance of keeping diesel engines running efficiently, here are some ways to keep them running during freezing weather.

Diesel Engines Require a Higher Temperature to Fire Up

Higher temperatures are needed to fire diesel engines than their gasoline counterparts, making them harder to get going in very cold weather. Temperatures below 40 degrees Fahrenheit can cause diesel fuel to thicken in a process known as “gelling,” or “waxing.”

There comes a point where diesel fuel thickens to such a point that it can’t be pumped through the engine anymore, causing it to fail to start or even to die. Keep your trucks up to date and running efficiently with the latest parts by visiting

Use a Glow Plug

A glow plug is a metal heating device shaped somewhat like a pencil. It resembles the heating element inside a toaster. The glow plug warms the air inside the combustion chamber, making it easier for the piston to ignite the fuel coming into the combustion chamber.

Plug In a Diesel Engine in Winter

An engine block heater is a convenient way to keep your engine’s core temperature optimum so it’s ready when you need it. A warm engine will fire up more rapidly, meaning less time spent standing in the cold draining your battery. Fuel-specific heaters can help mitigate the crystallization of wax and other kinds of fuel gelling.

Keep Your Diesel Fuel Tank Filled Up

Keeping your tank full can avoid the problem of getting water in the tank. As temperatures fluctuate, water can form in the gas tank. This happens through condensation when the cold fuel comes into contact with a warmer surface. Water droplets can form in the tank and drip down and mix with the fuel.

Water will sink below diesel in the fuel tank, becoming closer to the fuel pump. A diesel engine is designed for a specific purpose. The engine can pull the water into the injectors and try to start combustion with water instead of diesel, which could cause the engine to shut off and stop working.

Water in the tank also increases the chances of introducing fungi and bacteria into the tank which can produce problems down the line. These problems can be avoided by decreasing the likelihood of condensation forming in your tank by keeping the fuel levels high.

The Takeaway

Recent events in Texas have shown how vulnerable we all are to extreme weather. Freezing weather can cause vital infrastructure to come to a standstill, leaving people exposed to all kinds of threats. Diesel engines play a pivotal part in goods and service transportation in this day and age.

By following these tips on keeping your engine warm and avoiding condensation in the tank, you can play your part in ensuring the safety and security of your community in times of need.

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