How to prepare a diesel engine for winter

How to prepare a diesel engine for winter

Feature Staff

Diesel engines are known for their reliability and longevity, but much of that depends on how well the owner takes care of them. Colder months may be rough on trucks or other vehicles that run on diesel. If you’re wondering how to prepare a diesel engine for winter, here are some helpful tips to get the most out of your engine and protect it during the chilly months.

1. Check your batteries

It’s always a good idea to carefully watch the health of your car’s battery. Batteries generally last between two and five years, so before the climate gets too rough, you may want to check how the power is holding up. If you think you’re getting near the end of its lifespan, we suggest picking up a backup battery and having it ready to go.

2. Use your block heater

Many people forget about their engine’s block heater. This small plug near the front of your engine helps warm up your oil and prevents you from trying to run a cold engine, which can put unnecessary stress on your vehicle and shorten its lifespan. Because diesel engines are easy to work on, finding your block heater plug is relatively easy. However, we suggest checking that your heater is working before you hit the road.

3. Get the right fuel additives

One of the best ways to prepare a diesel engine for winter is by using fuel additives. Diesel has an unfortunate side effect in colder temperatures. At around 20 degrees Fahrenheit, it starts to gel. Diesel gelling may cause it to block fuel filters and disrupt the flow of fuel to the engine. Thankfully, several additives help prevent gelling, so investing in a good anti-gel fuel additive will keep your engine running smoothly through the winter. You can find these additives at nearly any auto-parts store.