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Truck Talk with Nate Brekken

Nate Brekken  | Published on 9/9/2018
Your Diesel engine is more capable than you think!
     Hopefully soon we will start to see some cooler temperatures heading our way. It’s been a long hot summer. A lot of trucks have been coming into the shop with the concern of overheating and/or running hot. Some of these have come down to coolant leaks, air flow issues, and, if you can believe, driving habits.
     Overdrive transmissions and turbo chargers have been part of our diesel engines since the early 90’s (Yes there are exceptions, but let’s keep it simple for arguments sake). With these advancements in technology, our diesel engines have gotten quieter, improved on fuel economy, and power has been improved as well.
     Would you believe that a lot of us don’t use our transmissions or turbos as they should be used?
     When climbing a mountain a lot of us still have the mentality that our engine can power through the pull. For a turbocharged engine this can be the death of it. Your engine requires you to be a little hard on it. Believe it or not, the more you push your engine and transmission, the happier it will be.
     Letting your turbocharged engine struggle, and/or lug up the mountain, puts more stress on it. Heat is created in the transmission due to that final overdrive gear not being able to handle the load you are carrying - slipping occurs and heat is generated, which taxes your cooling system.  At the same time, the low boost levels in your engine allow for exhaust gas temperatures to rise to very high to unsafe levels. If you have a pyrometer (exhaust gas temperature gauge) 1250 degrees in pretty much the magic number to stay under. Exhaust gas temps that go over this, can cause you to burn a hole in a piston, damage cylinder walls or valves, and hurt your injectors and so on.
     Your engine is more capable than you think! Push your truck a little harder, let the transmission down shift, allow your engine to use the turbo giving you a higher boost figure. Higher boost numbers actually keep your exhaust temperatures lower. Downshifting your transmission makes it easier on the motor to do it’s job, and puts your transmission in gear which makes it easier to climb the mountain and easier for your truck to pull the load you are carrying.
     I have helped many people with their driving over the years. It’s fun to see the light bulb turn on when they see how there truck behaves by driving it just a bit differently.
     Strictly Diesel is here to help. We can give you pointers on how to drive your truck empty or loaded. Let us help you make your truck last longer and be that much more fun while towing. Give us a call today. 623-582-4404 strictlydiesel.com