How to take care of a diesel engine or 10 commandments for a motorhome owner

How to take care of a diesel engine or 10 commandments for a motorhome owner – main image

The vast majority of motorhomes are powered by diesel engines. This is for economic reasons. Although today a liter of diesel fuel costs the same as gasoline, diesel engines have a much lower appetite for fuel. But how to take care of a car with such an engine?

A motorhome with a diesel engine can serve us for many years. Very often it turns out that diesel engines can achieve much higher mileage than petrol units. This means that at the mileage where the gasoline engine would have been scrapped, the Diesel is still running and doing well.

For this to happen, however, the oil-powered engine must be handled properly. It is also true that these engines often require more attention and care than gasoline units, and in the event of a breakdown, repair costs can be very high.

1. Fuel up with good fuel

Some experts recommend that modern turbodiesels should only be filled with premium fuel, i.e. more expensive diesel fuel. It certainly won't hurt, but will it help? Opinions are divided here. The most important thing is to refuel at good, preferably proven stations. You should definitely avoid places where fuel is offered at occasional low prices, and the appearance of the station itself does not inspire confidence.

2. Warm up the engine slowly

Turbodiesel may surprise you with its performance, but you'd better not start from under the headlights as for a race. If you want your motorhome to serve you long and trouble-free, give the engine time to warm up. For several minutes after starting, drive gently, at medium speed. Do not accelerate or brake sharply.

3. Avoid too high and too low revolutions

Extremes are not good! Both frequent driving at high revs and always sticking to the lowest revs are harmful to the engine. More pressing the gas pedal is recommended, but only sporadically - for a better cleaning of the engine and after it is warmed up well.

4. Control the temperature

When driving, pay attention to the engine temperature. In most engines, the ideal is to keep it around 90 degrees Celsius. This is the optimal temperature and indicates that the engine is warmed up and not overheated at the same time.

5. Avoid short distances

Driving on a cold engine, especially at low speeds (eg in traffic jams) is very "unhealthy" for a diesel engine, especially if it is a modern unit equipped with a particulate filter. The filter may then become clogged, and it is worth remembering that replacing the filter is associated with a very high cost.

6. Avoid driving with an empty fuel tank

Regardless of whether you have a new or old diesel, avoid a situation in which the car comes to a standstill due to lack of fuel. Although a modern diesel engine should "survive" such a situation, it is difficult to exclude the possibility of damage with certainty. It is best to do so if you feel that the reserve light is on is a sufficient sign to visit the nearest gas station.

7. Do not turn the engine off too quickly

Before doing this, please wait. Some experts advise that the warm engine should run "idle" for at least 20 seconds, others say even two minutes. The most important thing is to remember not to turn off the engine immediately after reaching your destination - wait at least a moment. As a result, the turbocharger will serve you longer.

8. Change the oil regularly

In the case of diesel engines, it is not worth checking how long the engine will last on the old oil. Even if your mileage is low, never run the same oil for more than a year. If the mileage of 10-15 thousand. you will reach km faster, change the oil more often. Always choose a high-quality oil - saving on oil can cost you dearly.

9. Replace the fuel filter

Do it according to the service recommendations. It is especially worth replacing the filter before winter.

10. Replace the air filter

It should also be done according to the manufacturer's recommendations.

By following these simple rules, your diesel motorhome will allow you to enjoy hassle-free journeys for longer. And pleasant experiences are probably worth paying some valuable attention to your vehicle.


Sometimes it is better to get lost than to ask for directions too much. Aldous Huxley

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