Sweeping Tip Clipboard

Alert for Use of Diesel Fuel Run Solenoids

by Ranger Kidwell-Ross

On a diesel, no ignition system is actually necessary. Instead, a 'fuel run solenoid' provides diesel flow to the engine. Excessive engine cranking can overheat a coil inside the solenoid, which ruins it by burning a hole in, or melting, the solenoid's epoxy coating. Because this occurrence is typically the result of misuse, it's not covered by warranties.

The overheating is usually from either not using glow plugs when starting, or from cranking the engine to get diesel back into the system when the engine has been run out of fuel or the fuel filters were serviced.

Whenever you run your tank dry, be sure to re-prime the system properly, via a mechanical hand-pump or electric fuel pump. Never rely on turning the engine over. Cranking for as little as 20-30 seconds can cause this failure to occur. If you have questions, be sure to contact your auxiliary engine manufacturer.

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This article is reprinted from American Sweeper magazine, Volume 8 Number 1, 2000.

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