How to diagnose problems and prolong the life of your diesel engine

There are several things an owner can do to prolong the life of a diesel engine and diagnose problems which will undoubtedly occur over time.

Diesel engine - DEUTZ Australia

Here are some essential tips from DEUTZ Australia to help you achieve this:

Regular maintenance checks are the most productive way of ensuring your diesel engine is working at maximum capacity.

Start with a visual inspection of the engine to gather information. Look at all the basics such as fuel lines, filters, belts and wiring. You may find loose parts or disconnected hoses, or even damaged components that should be repaired or replaced. The instrument panel may have warning lights indicating a particular problem.

The engine control unit can be scanned for error codes, which will provide information about any issues or malfunctions within the engine. Note the code and consult a specialist to fix any faults.

If you own a DEUTZ diesel engine, you can cross-reference it with the supplied DEUTZ engine manual to identify any initial indications of faults. Register for our S-DEUTZ SELECT program to gain access to your engine’s digital documents and receive alerts for upcoming maintenance schedule.

As a regular user of the machinery powered by the diesel engine, you are most likely familiar with how it sounds and performs, and therefore best able to identify any alterations to the way it sounds or functions. Any detected changes, if dealt with early, can be attended to and help prolong the life of your engine.

Check the fuel system regularly. This is a common source of problems and inspections should be conducted on a regular basis. Fuel filter, fuel pump and fuel lines all need to be looked over to ensure maximum fuel efficiency and longevity of the engine.

Direct injection engines rely on high compression for efficient combustion so compression testing will help maintain fuel efficiency.

Air intake systems can suffer from being clogged or dirty and need checking as part of regular maintenance.

Consult the service manual and any other resources available and read the trouble-shooting guide. This will also help with diagnostic procedures and maintenance steps.

Use genuine parts only. When it comes to replacing parts on your diesel engine, make sure to use genuine parts only. The authenticity and quality of each part manufactured by the original engine manufacturer will ensure optimal performance for your drive system.

Genuine DEUTZ spare parts are specifically designed, tested, and approved for DEUTZ engines. Using authentic parts not only prevents additional breakdowns, minimises downtime, and extends your engine’s lifespan but also provides you with a 12-month warranty, offering peace of mind.

There are a few difficult problems that may have you calling in a specialist:

Black smoke:

Black smoke is a sign of a serious problem with your diesel engine and needs prompt attention. The cause may be a faulty injector pump, a bad valve or even low operating temperatures. The best step to take when black smoke appears is to consult a specialist.

Hard Start:

When conditions are cold it can lead to grumpy engines that don’t want to start their day as early as you do. An engine that is hard to start or will not start at all may also be caused by faulty glow plugs, a defective battery or even something wrong with the fuel. It is best to consult a specialist.

Contaminated Fuel:

It can be quite easy to fix a contaminated fuel issue by simply refuelling. However, if the problem is not caught early enough it may lead to further problems which require a professional to repair.

Having experience, technical knowledge and diagnostic tools (which includes eyes and ears), will help keep your diesel engine running smoothly and efficiently. However, if problems occur, you can rely on a DEUTZ service centre for assistance. With a network of more than 70 service outlets throughout Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands, along with more than 500 trained diesel service personnel worldwide, we can assist with prolonging your diesel engine life.