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I am new to diesel engines and just want to make sure I am starting up my truck without hurting anything. I have always had the understanding you were supposed to turn the key 2 clicks and let the glow plugs "warm up" for a few seconds before starting the truck. However when I bought the truck they told me that you don't need to do that anymore on these trucks. Just want to make sure that is correct. I have remote start and have been hesitant to use it because I have been doing the glow plugs thing for now until I know for sure that I don't need to do that anymore. Any advice is appreciated. Again, my first diesel so sorry if this is an ignorant question.
 

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What you are stating is correct. Since diesel engines are compression ignition (CI) engines, they operate under high pressure and high temperatures. So when an engine is cold, the glow plugs heat the combustion chamber just enough so when the starter turns and the fuel (diesel) is introduced it can ignite.
Fast forward to today, and our EcoDiesel's still have glow plugs. However, they are much more powerful than what was previously used so they need less time to heat up. If the ambient temperature is low enough that the computer thinks it needs to activate the glow plugs, it does so automatically without our intervention. Sometimes I'll jump in my truck, hit the start button and then I realize that the engine hasn't cranked over yet. Then I look up to my EVIC (Electronic Vehicle Information Center), that little video screen between the speedo & tach, and towards the bottom of the screen I would see a coil light up, and then suddenly it's gone, and then the engine cranks over and starts! So don't worry or be concerned if you are gonna hurt your 3D, because it preheats it automatically if needed. Welcome & Happy Trucking!
 

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What you are stating is correct. Since diesel engines are compression ignition (CI) engines, they operate under high pressure and high temperatures. So when an engine is cold, the glow plugs heat the combustion chamber just enough so when the starter turns and the fuel (diesel) is introduced it can ignite.
Fast forward to today, and our EcoDiesel's still have glow plugs. However, they are much more powerful than what was previously used so they need less time to heat up. If the ambient temperature is low enough that the computer thinks it needs to activate the glow plugs, it does so automatically without our intervention. Sometimes I'll jump in my truck, hit the start button and then I realize that the engine hasn't cranked over yet. Then I look up to my EVIC (Electronic Vehicle Information Center), that little video screen between the speedo & tach, and towards the bottom of the screen I would see a coil light up, and then suddenly it's gone, and then the engine cranks over and starts! So don't worry or be concerned if you are gonna hurt your 3D, because it preheats it automatically if needed. Welcome & Happy Trucking!


Actually most don't have Glow Plugs any longer. They have Grid Heaters which heat the air coming into the intake manifold. This Extremely hot air is what the combustion chamber uses along with atomized fuel .
 
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