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Getting Your Diesel Truck Ready for Spring

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Getting Your Diesel Truck Ready for Spring

The winter is somewhat easing up. It’s in the pluses now, so it’s creeping up there to sunnier days.
We get it, it’s far off tanning weather here in Saskatoon, but the little peeks of sun coming into our diesel repair shop has got us thinking about whipping our diesel vehicles into shape pretty soon for the Spring season.
Getting your vehicle ready for the Spring – diesel or not – may be fairly routine for many car owners, but we see a lot of the same things missed with vehicles coming into our shop after a cold winter. There’s the obvious things to go over – changing and rotating your tires, fluids etc. – but diesel vehicles require a few little different checks than gasoline auto’s heading into the Spring.

Two Pretty Straight Forward Preparation Tips

Change, Balance & Rotate Your Tires

The bare roads of the Spring and Summer in Saskatoon wear really heavily on winter tires.
Without stating the obvious, you would be surprised how many diesel vehicles we see here in the shop in – oh, mid-May let’s say – that still have their winters on.
Big no, no. Winter tires are super flexible, and made that way to perform in winter conditions. If you throw a tire into the mixture of Spring/Summer heat and bare roads, this flexibility actually causes your winter tires to lose up to 30% of their tread in one warmer season.
Because winter tires become soft and squishy in heat, their ability to perform will be way less than a set of all seasons or summers. Making a quick maneuver, or a quick stop, will be a lot harder with a set of tires that have been worn down by incorrect road conditions.
Oh, and please- get your tires rotated and balanced as well. Each set that comes through our diesel repair shop is rotated as they are changed. If you’re going elsewhere however, just ensure the rotation and balancing is included in the change over fee.
(Unfortunately, some places actually charge for the two separately, leaving you with unbalanced tires.)

Change Your Windshield Fluid

Okay, okay, we admit- it’s not a faux pas to use winter windshield fluids in hot months. Your diesel vehicle isn’t going to seize up and shut down for not switching over.
But, we do recommend it simply for what the two different fluids do.
Winter windshield fluids are predominantly used for their high dose of methyl hydrate, which helps prevent freezing. Summer windshield fluids are typically used for their ingredients that assist with deeper cleaning your windshield- (bugs are actually quite difficult to clean off your windshield, no?)
The Not So Obvious Preparation Tips (h2)
Sometimes, diesel owners forget simple little things that can come back and bite them in the bumper.
(We tried- auto jokes are harder than most.)

A Good, Deep Car Wash

We see this really commonly at the shop- and especially with diesel trucks.
Because of their height, and typically the tires that are chosen for a lot of diesel truck models, the build up of corrosive salt on the under belly and cracks of our vehicles are hard to spot.
But they end up causing damage along the way; the most obvious being rust to the trucks body.
We agree that sometimes washing your car in the winter can sometimes seem pointless. It’s really satisfying to have a totally clean vehicle in the car wash bay and hear the splatter of dirty snow on every inch of your vehicle the minute you get back on the road, right?
But, while routinely washing your car is always recommended simply just to get rid of the build-up, a deep clean going into Spring is super, super essential. Spend a long time on the underbody to make sure nothing grinds away at the exterior.

Diesel Vehicles and Fuel Filters

Every vehicle out there- gasoline or diesel – works a lot harder during the winter to run than it does in the summer. Parts exhaust quicker in the winter, which is why checking essential components of your diese vehicle such as a fuel and air filters is essential.
It’s recommended you change your diesel car’s fuel and air filters every 10,000 – 25,000 miles depending on how “hard” you run your motor. Compared to a gasoline car, which requires a change up every 20,000 – 40,000 miles, diesel vehicles do require more regular changes.
Preparation Steps You Might Be Missing (h2)
Hear us out- you’ve probably got this covered if you’ve owned your diesel vehicle for a while.
But for new diesel vehicle owners, you might miss a few things that will really help your ride perform better throughout the seasons.

Don’t Ignore the Battery

Batteries are sometimes considered a little bit invincible; they’re not really booked into be inspected as much as we would like to see, particularly after the winter months.
You drive your ride harder during the winter months by default, which affects the life and performance of it. But, the colder temperatures also make the battery work a little harder automatically- so coming out of a Saskatoon winter, you may want to keep an eye on your battery’s performance in your diesel vehicle.
Particularly for diesel trucks, a cold season of glow plugs grid heaters can really take a toll on a diesel trucks battery.

And, The Transmission….

“So a transmission asks an engine, “Yo Engine, hows things with you today?” and the engine replies “Oh you know, just another day in the hood…”
(Please, let us know if you have any transmission jokes funnier than that. Please.)
But really, do get the transmission checked before heading into the Spring season. Included in that is also the transmission fluid- one of the most under inspected fluids in diesel vehicles we see brand new in our shop.

Sun Means Air Conditioning Unit (Finally)

Until the sun is blazing down into your vehicle, most car owners fail to check the AC before they actually really need it. Check the air conditioning unit as a formality, and you won’t be melting away in your vehicle until a diesel repair shop can get you in.
Let the Pro’s Take Care of It (general title)
If you want your diesel vehicle running smoothly in all seasons, trust your local Saskatoon diesel repair shop to inspect all areas and parts of your vehicle at each point in the year.
Experienced diesel technicians will know the ins and outs of getting your diesel ride prepped and ready for the warmer months.
Our biggest tip, though? Don’t cut corners with your diesel vehicle maintenance- especially getting it out of winter mode. What may be a quick, easy fix – or something you feel you can avoid for a little bit – will actually end up costing you a lot of repair dollars down the road.