Tecktalk - Diesel Maintenance

February 1999 Telltale page 8 - by Tom Winlow and Marcel Laroche.

Hopefully this column will provide some useful technical information about boats and their various systems such as electrical or mechanical. I invite contributors with useful tips. Best tip of the year will receive a prize at the awards banquet. (PR directors budget).

One of the cheapest and best things you can do for your diesel engine is to give it a can of STP or Bardahl diesel fuel conditioner/cleaner once a year. Just pour it in the fuel tank, as much as recommended on the can. It cleans the injectors and high pressure pump and keeps that iron geny happy. There is also a lubricant sold for use with low sulfur diesel fuel which is a good thing to keep in mind.

Diesels like to run under load, so it is a good thing to once a month, motor at reasonable speed for half an hour or so to clean the cylinders of carbon build up.

If you do not have one, install a fuel water separator filter such as made by Racor. If water gets into the engine you can kiss it goodbye along with several grand for a new one. The separators only cost about $50.00 and they are a much better filter than the one on the engine. Especially for Bukhs and older MD series Volvo diesels, change the water impeller every year or two. These engines with heavy flywheels oscillate several times when turned off and do much abuse to the impellers.

Look forward to hearing your ideas. The technical committee reserves the right to edit any ideas sent in. (We will attempt to verify all information published).