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Old 11-20-2013, 05:37 PM   #1
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Engine Chugging

I took a 350 mile trip six weeks ago and then parked the MH in storage with about half a tank of fuel remaining. Tried to start the engine this week and it chugs heavily with lots of white smoke out the exhaust. I then replaced the fuel filter at the right side door near the air filter and engine still chugs and emits white smoke. I then added some diesel fuel additive for gel and water and plan to go try the engine again tomorrow. Any other suggestions for trouble shooting?

This is a 2004 40' Alpine with 400 HP Cummins.
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Old 11-20-2013, 05:42 PM   #2
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White smoke occurs when raw diesel comes through the exhaust completely intact and unburned. Some causes of this include…
  • Faulty or damaged injectors
  • Incorrect injection timing (could be a worn timing gear or damaged crankshaft keyway).
  • Low cylinder compression (eg caused by leaking or broken valves, piston ring sticking, cylinder and/or ring wear, or cylinder glaze)
When white smoke occurs at cold start, and then disappears as the engine warms up, the most common causes are fouling deposits around piston rings and/or cylinder glazing. Use of our Flushing Oil Concentrate and FTC Decarbonizer address these respective problems. Water entering combustion spaces will also create white smoke. Faulty head gaskets and cracked cylinder heads or blocks are a common cause of water entry, and are often to blame. Unfortunately, expensive mechanical repair is the only proper solution here.
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Old 11-20-2013, 06:02 PM   #3
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I hope its not a head gasket. You can usually smell the coolant in that type of "white smoke."
If not the above, just for drill, since you have an electronic engine, try shutting off the chassis battery, then cycling it back on. Its cheap & fast. Just might clear a brain fart.

Then also just for fun, see if something is restricting your air intake. It would have to be pretty severe to do this at idle. Could be you sucked in a pregnant bat, and it has hatched out a buncha little batlets (or would that be batlings?).

If the above (or additional feedback on this thread) is no help, I'd move this discussion to the Cummins forum.
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Old 11-20-2013, 08:39 PM   #4
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Have you looked at the oil dip stick for any milky looking subatance?
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Old 11-21-2013, 03:01 PM   #5
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thanks all for the input. The oil on the dipstick looks normal. Removed the air filter and don't see any blockages and the engine still chugs when I try to run it with the air filter removed. Turned off the battery disconnect, then back on and still chugs. I will move this to the Cummins site.
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Old 11-21-2013, 03:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djdobbins1 View Post
thanks all for the input. The oil on the dipstick looks normal. Removed the air filter and don't see any blockages and the engine still chugs when I try to run it with the air filter removed. Turned off the battery disconnect, then back on and still chugs. I will move this to the Cummins site.
Do you still have the white smoke out the exhaust?
If you are trying to down power the TCM,ECM modules, unhook your battery terminal as they have power to them even with the disconnect switch off I think.
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Old 11-21-2013, 03:34 PM   #7
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Yes, still getting lots of smoke (maybe its gray and not white) and engine shuts itself down after approx. 10-20 seconds. I will disconnect the engine batteries and check again.
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:26 PM   #8
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Yes, still getting lots of smoke (maybe its gray and not white) and engine shuts itself down after approx. 10-20 seconds. I will disconnect the engine batteries and check again.
Try replacing the secondary fuel filter. You will find it on the passenger side of engine in the middle just above the starter.
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Old 11-21-2013, 09:56 PM   #9
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Also check the air path between the filter & Air Intake on side of the coach.
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Old 11-23-2013, 06:54 PM   #10
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Engine Chugging

I have a 2004 40' Alpine Coach with a Cummins 8.9L ISL 400HP engine.

I took a 350 mile trip six weeks ago and the engine was running just fine. I then parked the MH in storage with about half a tank of fuel remaining. Tried to start the engine this week and it chugs heavily with lots of light gray smoke out the exhaust. The eng maint light comes on and the engine sully shuts itself down in 10-20 seconds. I then replaced the main and only fuel filter at the right side door near the air filter and engine still chugs and emits gray smoke. I then added some diesel fuel additive for gel and water, checked the intake for restrictions and it still chugs and smokes. I tried running the engine with the air filter removed with no help. I disconnected the chassis batteries to try and reset the electronic engine control with no help. I don't have a secondary fuel filter, so can't replace that. I looked at the oil dipstick and it looks normal with no signs of milky fluid or engine coolant. I don't have an engine monitoring system, so don't have any fault c
odes.

I replaced the engine air filter and fuel tank level sending unit after the last trip and just before this problem started.

Any other suggestions for trouble shooting?
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Old 11-23-2013, 08:46 PM   #11
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Engine Chugging

If the check engine light came on then there is a code in the computer which would be a place to start. You could go to a Cummins shop our an independent diesel shop to have codes read. I purchased a HD diesel scan gauge for around 500$ but I can use on other diesels so I thought money well spent. Those codes will most likly be able to find your problem.
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Old 11-24-2013, 03:12 PM   #12
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Other causes of white smoke:

- Lack of compression.
- Water in fuel.
- Air in fuel.
- Defective injector.
- Leaking head gasket.
- Cracked cylinder head.
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Old 11-24-2013, 03:28 PM   #13
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I wounder if it's cold there? If is and you have an engine heater you might try turning that on. Or if you have a aqua hot turn on the burner and then the engine warmer sw and let it warm up the engine. Then see what you get.

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Old 11-24-2013, 05:30 PM   #14
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It is not that cold here in the Birmingham area, so that is not an issue.
I did have the fuel level sending unit removed from the side of the tank, near the top for about three weeks while I awaited a repair and finally replacement unit. I had a rag stuffed in the open hole in the tank to keep debris out. Is it possible that I gained a lot of condensation/water in the tank during this time? If so, what is a good way to get the water out of about 60 gallons of diesel?
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