Top 5 Heavy Duty Diesel Truck Engine Problems & How to Avoid Them

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Iron Buffalo Truck & Trailer
September 15, 2023
Top 5 Heavy Duty Diesel Truck Engine Problems & How to Avoid Them

Heavy-duty diesel trucks are a vital part of our transportation infrastructure, but like any machine, they are prone to experiencing problems. One of the most common issues with these vehicles is engine failure, which can be costly to repair and disrupt the flow of goods and materials. In this article, we will explore some of the top heavy-duty truck engine problems and how to avoid them. By understanding the causes and preventative measures for these issues, truck owners and operators can extend the life of their engines and minimize downtime.

Forgetting to replace the fuel filter 

Any diesel engine's lifetime and effective operation depend heavily on regular fuel filter replacements. Diesel fuel must be thoroughly filtered and cleaned before being injected via the different systems in your engine. Your diesel engine's fuel filters will progressively accumulate dirt, sludge, and debris as you drive. Every time the fuel filter becomes clogged, it must be replaced to avoid engine damage. 

Ignoring air filter replacement 

Another element that must be replaced regularly is the air filter for your diesel engine. The air filter may clog up with various debris and deposits, much as the fuel filter can. Your diesel engine's turbo system, pistons, and valves will have problems operating properly without enough airflow. Your diesel engine technician will be able to quickly change your air filter and this can be checked during your regular preventive maintenance service. 

Waiting too long to change your oil 

It would help if you sat down with your technician to develop an oil change maintenance program for your truck when you first buy a commercial vehicle with a diesel engine. Adhering to this schedule may prevent your engine from overheating or suffering other damages. Severe engine damage may result if you put off getting your oil changed for too long. 

Servicing your differential

All trucks come with a rear differential as standard equipment. However, certain variants also provide front differentials as an option. It lets your vehicle go forward and backward by distributing the driveshaft's rotating force to the wheels. A differential overhaul might include anything from bearing repair to a brand-new carrier assembly or case. You should budget at least $1,000 for the repair with the chance of more expenses. 

Transmission difficulties 

The transmission is responsible for transferring the power generated by the engine to the wheels, allowing the truck to move. If the transmission is not functioning properly, the truck will not be able to move and will be useless for transporting goods.

A malfunctioning transmission can cause damage to other components of the truck, leading to further repairs and expenses. Proper maintenance of the transmission includes regularly checking and replacing the transmission fluid, as well as identifying and repairing any potential issues before they become major problems. Regular maintenance is essential for the truck to operate safely and efficiently, as well as to prevent costly repairs and downtime. 

Final words 

While diesel engines tend to be more cost-effective in terms of fuel efficiency, they may require more maintenance and repairs, which can be costly. It's important to properly care for your diesel vehicle to prevent any minor issues from turning into expensive problems. Even with newer trucks, which have seen a decrease in maintenance costs in recent years, owning a heavy-duty diesel truck can still be expensive.