In general, diesel engines do not need as much repairs as gas-powered engines, considering that they are well maintained. Otherwise, they could be more costly to repair. To keep your diesel vehicle on the road and perfectly functional for longer, you need to know about these common diesel engine issues so you could address them promptly.

The Engine Is Hard to Start

Having a tough time starting your car could indicate low compression or a fuel delivery issue. While it’s normal to feel a slight crank when you start your car, if you’re suddenly having a hard time starting it, or worse, can’t get it to start at all, an inspection by a diesel repair professional in Salt Lake City, Utah should be in order.

Not Enough Power

Issues with accelerating or starting could be linked to filthy fuel filters, loose throttle links, issues with the fuel injectors, or excessive lubrication. Make sure your fuel filter is clean to avoid damaging your fuel injectors and reducing the overall performance of your car’s engine.

Oil Oxidation


If you leave your vehicle unused for long periods or do not drive it on a regular basis, you would no doubt experience oil oxidation at some point. When this happens, air would get into the oil and produce bubbles that negatively affect proper lubrication. When left unaddressed, oil oxidation could easily lead to engine damage.

Contaminated Fuel

Water, glycol, dilution and soot are four of the most common fuel contaminants. If one of these manages to breach your fuel system, it will result in major issues with your diesel engine.

Black Exhaust

This typically happens because of an imbalance in fuel to air proportions, usually due to insufficient air and a surplus of fuel. Common causes include a malfunctioning injector, air filter, injector pump, EGR valve or turbocharger.

Strange Noises

If you are suddenly hearing unusual knocking or banging noises, it might be due to a problem with your fuel injectors, which, in turn, could reduce overall engine performance.

Humidity Issues

Water could easily pollute your engine’s lubricant, which could lead to severe damage to your engine. If you let your car sit for an extended amount of time in humid or rainy weather, the moisture would attack the additives and increase oil oxidation.

Too High Compression Ratio

Majority of diesel engines have an average compression ratio of 20:1 while gas-powered engines only have 8:1. The high compression ratio of diesel engines is what makes the engine efficient and powerful. But having a too high compression ratio could be a problem. For example, it could result in issues with the fuel injection and the engine knocking more often than usual due to improper burn pattern.

When trying to figure out if something is amiss with your diesel engine, it helps to look at the all the common culprits mentioned here first. Do not forget to have your engine checked at the first sign of trouble to avoid more expensive repairs or part replacements later on and help extend the life of your diesel engine.

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