Correct way to warm up a diesel. - Diesel Forum - TheDieselStop.com
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Power Strokes 1994-1997 General Technical discussion of topics related to vehicles powered by the Power Stroke engine in 1994 through 1997 models.

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Old 03-14-2005, 06:55 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Correct way to warm up a diesel.

I want to know how you guys in the north, warm up your trucks before you drive them. What is the correct way to warm them up in cold weather so you don't do any excessive damage on the engine? [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img]
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Old 03-14-2005, 07:11 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

The correct way, in my not so humble opinion, is to let it idle just long enough to put on your seat belt, then drive gently until the temp is normal.
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Old 03-14-2005, 08:05 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

I gotta agree with Casey. It was 18 degrees here last night and I did not plug the truck in. DUH [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img] Started fine with the GP's and I was on my way as soon as the oil pressure came up. That said, I do live on a nice long lonely country road, so nobody is behind me in a hurry to get to work.
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Old 03-14-2005, 08:21 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

Why is it not a good idea to let them idle for long a period of time when cold? (oil)? [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img]
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Old 03-14-2005, 08:34 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

Because diesels don't warm up very well at idle. They use A LOT of cold air, and not a lot of diesel fuel at idle, so there isn't a lot of heat generated. In some cases the engine will stay cold enough at idle that some fuel won't burn and it will wash the oil off the cylinders.
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Old 03-14-2005, 08:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

I normaly let mine idle for 10 minute or so before I take off. Am I doing damage?
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Old 03-14-2005, 09:23 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

Just to give you an idea...

I turn the ignition to 'run', click on my seat belt, wait for the light to go off, count to 5 (extra time heating the cylinder can't hurt [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img] ), then crank her over.

I take a look around the cab to see if anything is amiss, plug in my phone if needbe, change CD if needbe, then once the plugs are off (I have an LED hooked into the glow plug side of the relay or you can tell by the Voltmeter returning back to around the middle) I take off.

I live around 1.1 or so miles from the interstate and between the house and it is just the neighborhood. Once I get out of the neighborhood, I go up to around 45 for about a 1/2 mile, then highway speed.

It seems a little involved typing it out, but this is the routine I use every single time I get into the truck and it's become second nature.

You pretty much need to put a load on the engine to get her warmed up. Even at high idle (1000+ rpms) it gets only so warm.

.02.

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Old 03-14-2005, 09:32 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

Hey Joel,

I really don't know if you are doing damage per se, but it's not really getting warmed up. Especially if you are just letting it idle at normal idle speed. You are letting the oil circulate, which is good, but the engine is not getting warm.

It's preferred to let it idle at a higher RPM like 1000-1300 to keep the cylinders nice and warm for complete combustion. Otherwise, you will encounter a condition called 'wetstaking' which basically is washing the cylinder (fuel getting past the rings) and can lead to carbon deposits.

That's how I understand it. If I'm wrong, the folks here are good about getting the info straight. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img]

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Old 03-14-2005, 09:47 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

I crank her up, let the glow plugs get done cycling, then idle it up to about 1000 rpm for about 10-15 minutes until you generate a little heat. It also depends on how cold it is............Dave
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Old 03-14-2005, 10:05 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

When cold mine runs horrible if i don't let it warm up.

That being said no matter how warm it is out I go start my truck go inside and shave/brush hair make lunch real quick and go out to drive.
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Old 03-14-2005, 10:08 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

I realized how cold these things idle after I changed out my water pump last week. Let it sit and idle waiting for the t-stat to open and pressurized the top coolant line to check for any leaks. Never happened. Finnaly took off down the road and she open.
I guess I just feel comforatable letting it "warm up" per se on those cold mornings. I bought her new in 1996 and have put 140,000 miles on it, So I guess I havent done any damage since I havent had any engine issues.
Thanks for the input.
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Old 03-14-2005, 10:36 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

I agree with Casey also. Any amount of time an engine, gas or diesel,
operates while not at temperature causes increased wear. The quicker
you can get it there the better, within reason. I follow the start the
vehicle up, put on the seat belt, and drive away slowly. Just don't
drive it hard until it's up to temp. Does it work, the most miles
I've put on a vehicle was 360K on a '71 Olds 350 gasser without any
engine work. It didn't "burn" oil either. So far it's worked for
me. I do work an engine after it's warmed up properly though. I expect
my truck to pull the boat very well and it does. I just don't hammer
it when I first hook up! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/biggrin.gif[/img]
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Old 03-14-2005, 11:23 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

I just reread the thread and found what Casey said. I missed it the first time. He got it right. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

I guess this brings up a question "What is considered driving it 'too hard' while cold?

I don't hit it hard out the gate by any means, I get up to speed gently, but I do let it spin as much as it wants too. By the time I need to hit 45, the temp needle has moved a little, then by the interstate, it's between the 'C' mark and the low mark on 'Normal'.

Thanks,
JB
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Old 03-14-2005, 11:33 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

I go out start mine turn on the EBPV then do whatever I need then leave according to my pyro it idles at 400 degs. and everything I have read so far states at least 300 degs. to burn all the fuel [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/shrug.gif[/img] besides it couldn't fight its way out of a wet paper bag when cold [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/shrug.gif[/img]
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Old 03-14-2005, 12:53 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: Correct way to warm up a diesel.

Navistar had a problem with bent push tubes on the 444E when the trucks were being idled in cold ambient temps. They state that when idled and being cold it will cause a build up of carbon and varnish on the valve stems which can result in valves sticking. They say to maintain a minimum of 1250rpm and if you do idle it for beyond 10 minutes not to shut engine off but to drive it and burn off any accumulated carbon and varnish.
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