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Old 09-06-2008, 03:45 AM   #1
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Upon starting up engine this AM, outside air at about 33 degrees, engine ran very rough for about 5-10 seconds, producing considerable light colored smoke, then smoothed out and ran fine the rest of the day, engine is 2004 Cummins 400 ISL, with about 27,000, miles, had FL, M3 , service about 3700 miles ago, never any problems....have no experience with diesel engines, could this be a one time thing, or symptoms of another problem????thanks for any help.
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Old 09-06-2008, 03:45 AM   #2
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Upon starting up engine this AM, outside air at about 33 degrees, engine ran very rough for about 5-10 seconds, producing considerable light colored smoke, then smoothed out and ran fine the rest of the day, engine is 2004 Cummins 400 ISL, with about 27,000, miles, had FL, M3 , service about 3700 miles ago, never any problems....have no experience with diesel engines, could this be a one time thing, or symptoms of another problem????thanks for any help.
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Old 09-06-2008, 05:11 AM   #3
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Use your engine pre-heater -- Bill Willard
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Old 09-06-2008, 06:21 AM   #4
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My vote is what Bill said. There should be a button/switch to turn on your engine heater. I use mine if the temp is going below 60 degrees. Turn it on before you go to bed. The next morning, the engine should start normally. Some things to watch out for are, on my coach:
1. the engine heater is plugged into the outlet in the electrical bay. Even though the switch is located inside the coach. If you have a similar setup, make sure the heater is plugged into its' outlet.
2. the coach must be plugged into shore power or running the generator for the heater to work.

Your coach may opperate differently.
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Old 09-06-2008, 05:38 PM   #5
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Low 30's is time to use the block heater.

Also, did you wait for the "Wait to Start" light to go out? It may take longer than usual in cold weather. Starting it too soon can causse this also.
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Old 11-13-2008, 04:18 PM   #6
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I had this same issue and asked the Cummins rep about it at an FMCA rally. He said this is normal and not a problem (will also do it at altitudes above 5,000'). Not a problem at all according to him.
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Old 11-16-2008, 12:58 AM   #7
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The Engine Heater only works when it gets down to 32 or below.
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Old 11-16-2008, 03:29 AM   #8
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by UPS 34:
The Engine Heater only works when it gets down to 32 or below. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

This may be correct on your coach but not the majority. While at Camp Freightliner we were instructed that the heater will come on any time the switch is turned on. It will come on and stay at 40 degrees. It has no thermostat and will stay on as long as the engine heat switch is on regardless of engine temperature. I just proved that it will come on above 32 degrees with the outside air temperature above 50 degrees. With my generator running (no shore power) I turned on the engine heater and could see a large jump in amperage usage.

I am only relaying what we were told at the 2 day chassis class offered in Gaffney, SC.

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Old 11-16-2008, 05:26 AM   #9
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I agree with Jim - whenever the switch is on, the heater is heating, regardless of ambient or engine temperatures.
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Old 11-16-2008, 04:36 PM   #10
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You have gotten great advice from all others. Just plug in when cold. I have more than once forgot to plug my work unit in (Cat C7) when its been 20 to 30 degrees. No harm done, just runs a little rough and maybe some smoke at start up. Just one more thing to remember.
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Old 11-19-2008, 04:34 PM   #11
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What is the preheater on a modern diesel (ULSD-burning ISB in my case) doing? Is it simply a sump heater to keep the oil flowing, or is it running some induction air heat or something else? The manuals don't tell me much.
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Old 11-20-2008, 03:48 AM   #12
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The word "preheater" can be a misnomer. Technically there are two preheat modes.

The preheater controlled by the console switch is an engine block heater. It's a 120 VAC electrical element inserted into the side of the engine block that heats up the coolant in the engine.

When you turn the ignition switch on a "wait to start" light illuminates. During this phase a 12 volt heating element insetted into the intake manifold will preheat the intake air mixture that is going into the cylinder.

There are no engine oil sump heaters installed as OEM.
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Old 11-20-2008, 04:51 AM   #13
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Jim, I stand corrected. I tested mine as you did and it works as you said.
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Old 11-25-2008, 06:55 AM   #14
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Now I am wondering if I have a preheater console switch for a block heater on my 06 Endeavor?? I do not recall seeing any such switch up front. I have the outlet in back with the electric cord but no switch that I am aware of. Any help here? Also wondering if this plug is for a block heater or coolant heater?

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