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Old 11-06-2018, 03:42 PM   #1
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Short trips with a diesel

I'm new to having a diesel truck. One of the common warnings I see on RV websites is not to take short trips with your diesel engine. The thing I noticed about these posts is that no one actually says why that is specifically. What happens that is detrimental to the engine with short trips and what can be done to counter these effects?
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Old 11-06-2018, 03:57 PM   #2
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Our 2007.5 LMM Duramax is equipped with a DPF and it triggers Regen for about 15 minutes every 250 miles or so.
We drive ours when and where we need to sometimes only 30 miles from home.

Our previous MH was equipped with a Cummins 350 and we did the same.
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Old 11-06-2018, 04:44 PM   #3
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Its a truck, just use it whenever you need it to do whatever you are doing. We have trucks for our construction company. If the truck needs to start, you start it. If it needs to drive five miles or five hundred, thats what it does. Why would a diesel truck be any different from any other truck. Warm it up a bit to get the oil pressure up, same as any vehicle. We dont treat our diesel trucks any different than our gas ones. One main thing all my mechanic friends have told me is, if you have a turbo, do just shut them off hot. Let them idle out for a few minutes before shutting down. This gives the turbo a bit to cool off. Other than that, I dont think the millions of work trucks out there are getting and special treatment as far as not driving them on short trips.
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Old 11-06-2018, 05:33 PM   #4
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Not a duramax but I have a 2002 ford with a 7.3 diesel.
I live less than two miles from home to work and have not had a single issue with engine and has never seen a shop. I do plug it in when the temps get in the teens. Start it up let it idle for a couple min to get oil pressure up and off ya go.
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Old 11-06-2018, 06:16 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fdhealy4 View Post
I'm new to having a diesel truck. One of the common warnings I see on RV websites is not to take short trips with your diesel engine. The thing I noticed about these posts is that no one actually says why that is specifically. What happens that is detrimental to the engine with short trips and what can be done to counter these effects?
"coking" is the term used in relation to deposits left in the exhaust system of diesel engines. The deposits are generated by low exhaust gas temperature (EGT) caused by (1) insufficient warm up of engine, and/or short engine run time. The deposits will collect on the EGR valve and turbo fins and eventually lead to issues. Newer diesel engines are reported to be much more susceptible to "bad" fuel and many people add a Cetane supplement to improve the fuel which in turn will reduce the possibility of coke deposits.

As previously mentioned, giving the engine adequate cool-down time is also a good idea.
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Old 12-17-2018, 07:36 PM   #6
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It only takes a matter of seconds for the oil presure to build up. If you have to wait minutes for the oil presure to build up at idle, than I strongly recommend that you have the low oil presure diagnosed. There is no reason to leave a Duramax idling for an extended period after driving unless you want to plug up your egr cooler, if equipped. There is no reason to treat these engines any diffrent than a gas engine except plugging in block heater when very cold out
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Old 12-17-2018, 07:50 PM   #7
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It’s not good for gasoline engines, either, especially in cold weather.
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