Diesel Engine Repair & Service
Diesel engines are common in fleet vehicles, semi-trucks and pickup trucks. With the rising price of traditional gasoline, diesel is also becoming a more popular choice for family vehicles.
Our shop provides service for diesel engines of all sizes.
We use the latest diagnostic tools to ensure your diesel engine is running as it should.
Diesel engines are exceptionally reliable, but they do need regular maintenance in order to stay in top condition.
You must keep your diesel engine’s oil and filters changed at regular, scheduled intervals. Because diesel engines do not have electrical ignition parts such as plugs and wires, there are fewer components within the vehicle that need to be maintained. Still, you do need to make sure that the regular maintenance that does need to be performed on your diesel vehicle is done by a shop that understands and is experienced in working with diesel engines.
Problems such as leaky gaskets, cooling system issues, overheating, air and oil filtration issues, fuel system restrictions, dirty injectors, piston scoring, faulty injection timers and hard starting can be solved by bringing your diesel vehicle to the knowledgeable and experienced team.
Time To Take Another Look at Diesel Vehicles
Let's debunk some of the myths about diesel powered vehicles:
1. Diesel Burns Dirty
This was true years ago. Since 2006, however, U.S. diesel vehicles have been required by law to use ultra-low-sulfur diesel or USLD. Modern diesels are soot-free and have a smaller carbon footprint.
2. Diesels Are Sluggish
Not any more. They are as fast off the line as similar gasoline-powered cars. If your idea of fun is to spend an afternoon test-driving new cars, go take a spin in a diesel BMW or Porsche.
3. Diesels Are Loud
Back in the day, you could hear a diesel motor from a mile away. Today's diesels run quiet.
4. Diesels Have a Bad Resale Value
Actually, diesel vehicles have a lower depreciation rate.
Another often-overlooked benefit is lower risk of fire. Diesel fuel is less flammable and won't explode like gasoline.
Diesel engines require parts that are heavier and stronger. At Steger Service in St. Louis, MO, we occasionally service diesel cars and trucks with over 300,000 miles/500,000 kilometers. The heavy-duty parts make diesel vehicles a little more expensive new, but due to the extra burliness, diesel engines last a lot longer. This is one of the reasons Cummins diesels inspire such a loyal following.
Cons? Cold weather starting. Diesel engines can be hard to fire up when the temperature drops. However, an engine block heater can solve this problem.
If you are in the market for a new vehicle that's easy on fuel, you might want to explore your diesel options. You'll save money and may qualify for a tax credit if you buy a clean diesel vehicle. Of course, diesels require regular maintenance like any other vehicle and the services are usually a little more costly due to the nature of the engines. But the extra cost is offset by the better fuel economy and longer engine life.
Bottom line? The diesel vehicles on the roads today are not your grandfather's diesel.
When someone mentions diesels around St. Louis, images of smoky, rattly trucks may spring to mind. The fact is that the modern, clean diesel engine is much more refined than in the old days. Sure, diesel engines remain a very popular choice with heavy duty pick-up truck drivers in the St. Louis area, but they are finding their way into nearly every segment of the automotive market. Why is that? Well, it's science.
Diesel fuel contains more energy than the same amount of gasoline. So it takes less diesel fuel to do the same amount of work as gas. So St. Louis diesel drivers get more miles per gallon/kilometers per liter and lower emissions. In Europe, where fuel is very expensive and good fuel economy is very important, around half of passenger vehicles are powered by diesel engines. This goes for small economy cars all the way up to the world's most luxury vehicles.
The driving experience is also very good with diesel engines. In fact St. Louis residents may not even be able to tell the difference between riding in or driving a diesel powered vehicle. So what are the factors to when deciding whether or not to choose a diesel engine?
One consideration is price. Diesel engines cost more to build and are an extra cost option for most vehicles. So St. Louis residents need to do the math to see how long it will take the increased to pay for the extra up-front cost of a diesel engine. The cost of diesel fuel in Missouri is also a factor. There is no clear correlation between gas prices and diesel prices because the refining and distribution systems are so different. This means that the difference in price per gallon/liter for diesel and gasoline can vary a great deal depending on where you live in Missouri. Just watch diesel and gas prices for a while (or talk with a diesel owner in St. Louis) so you can get a feel for how much price per gallon/liter figures into your purchase decision.
Also important to know is your expected use of the vehicle. For example, if you tow heavy trailers or haul heavy loads around St. Louis, the extra power many diesel engines offer (while getting better fuel economy than a gas engine) may help you make your decision. Your highway/city driving mix may play into the decision as well. Diesels shine in the highway fuel economy department. And the more you drive in a year, the more attractive diesel engines become.
If your vehicle has a diesel engine, remember that it still requires maintenance like your gas powered vehicles always have. Oil changes, cooling system service, power steering, brakes, tires, etc. – all need to be maintained. Some of the schedules may be different because of the unique design of diesel engines. Your friendly and knowledgeable Steger Service staff will be able to help you properly maintain your diesel vehicle, helping it last longer and continue to deliver great performance and efficiency.
What's up with Diesels in St. Louis?
Would you be surprised to learn that about half of the passenger cars in Europe have diesel engines? You might also be surprised to learn that most manufacturers produce a variety of diesel-fueled cars for purchase abroad.
Diesel-fueled vehicles haven't been as popular in the North American markets like Missouri. But that won't be true for long. North Americans are seeing a lot more diesel-fueled vehicles on the road. And we're not talking about buses and trucks. These vehicles will be passenger cars, pick-ups and SUV's.
There are two reasons for this. The first is a recent change in environmental laws that have upgraded emissions standards for diesel fuel in North America. Diesel fuel in North America used to have higher sulfur content than European fuel, meaning that it was a dirtier fuel to burn. That was okay for larger vehicles, but the lighter-weight engines in passenger vehicles just couldn't tolerate it.
But that high sulfur content is now a thing of the past. Fuel producers are now required to sell cleaner diesel fuel in St. Louis. That opens the North American market to more diesel-powered vehicles. The second reason we're going to see more of these vehicles in St. Louis is that they're more fuel-efficient than their gasoline-powered counterparts. Diesel fuel has higher energy density than gasoline. That translates to more power per barrel of fuel. In your tank, that translates to better engine performance and about 20% better fuel economy.
People in St. Louis may associate diesel engines with black smoke, noise and a definite “shake, rattle and roll.” That's also a thing of the past. Modern diesel engines are smooth, quiet and produce cleaner emissions than gasoline engines. Also, forget that three-second wait behind a diesel vehicle at a stoplight. Modern diesels are just as quick to accelerate as other vehicles on St. Louis roads.
Diesel engines have other advantages over gasoline engines. Diesel engines are heavier than gasoline engines because they require more heavy-duty parts, but that means the engines are more durable and can last longer than gasoline engines. Also, diesel engines may be the engines of the future since they can burn many of the new bio-fuels.
Bio-diesel can be manufactured from vegetable oils, including used cooking oil from St. Louis restaurants. Just think, one day you could fuel your vehicle on stuff that was once considered waste—one step closer to a cleaner environment here in St. Louis. And if you think hybrid cars are environmentally sound, consider what a diesel-electric hybrid could mean.
St. Louis drivers who are considering buying a diesel-fueled vehicle should know that preventive maintenance and inspection schedules are different for a diesel engine than a gasoline engine. Diesel fuel is harder on emissions systems than gasoline, so the filters and other devices have to be changed and checked more often. Also, the fuel injection system operates at much higher pressures for diesel than for gasoline, so keeping it clean becomes a higher priority.
When you switch from a gas vehicle to a diesel, you'll have to learn some new rules of vehicle care. But you won't be alone. Most St. Louis service centers are aware that diesels are coming to North America and are already prepared to provide service for diesel engines. At Steger Service, we are well-versed in diesel technology. You can rely on our team of automotive professionals to provide quality service for diesel-powered vehicles.