Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Diesel Truck Maintenance FAQs


Diesel vehicles are popular these days, thanks in part to their towing abilities and engine durability. Since many people aren’t as familiar with what it takes to keep a diesel engine running smoothly, let’s take a look at three of the most common questions people ask about diesel truck maintenance.

How often does a diesel truck need an oil change?

While diesel engines are very different from their gas-powered counterparts, there is at least one thing they have in common … how frequently they need an oil change can and does depend on several factors.

Here are the top factors that influence the timing and frequency of oil changes for your diesel truck:

Oil type used
Driving conditions – idling time, distance traveled per week, etc.
Type of use – no hauling vs. light loads vs. heaving hauling
Climate conditions where the truck is operated most

While diesel trucks, vans, or cars can often go longer between oil changes than their gas relatives, it’s important to pay attention to how and when your diesel vehicle is used. Heavy hauling or frequent idling, for example, can make it necessary to schedule an oil change every 3,000 miles. In contrast, if you only use your truck for light driving and live in a moderate climate, you may be able to stretch oil changes to every 5,000 – 7,000 miles.

If you’re not sure what oil change schedule to follow, your best bet is to ask your trusted diesel mechanic.

What does routine diesel truck maintenance include?

In addition to regular oil changes, your diesel engine needs other services scheduled and completed at certain intervals in order to keep it running smoothly. Remember how preventative maintenance can keep a gas-powered vehicle at the top of its game? The same philosophy holds true for diesels as well.

Preventative diesel truck maintenance includes but is not limited to:

Routine oil and engine filter changes
Regular fuel filter replacement to prevent fuel contamination
Periodic air filter changes to filter out debris
Water separator draining
Injection system refills

While it’s true that diesel engines are often less prone to major repairs than gas engines, that’s only the case if you follow a regular diesel truck maintenance schedule. Some services only need to be completed once a year or every 10,000 miles. Others may need to be done more frequently. Always refer to your owner’s manual or the advice of your trusted diesel mechanic for the guidelines that are specific to your vehicle.

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