As you would a car, general care of your engine will keep her going for longer with less risk of issues occurring at a later date. There are some very basic factors that will help you to increase the health of your engine.
• Check for leaks – Obvious, but a tell-tale sign of something not right. Check the stern gland if you have one, and then progress to water and oil systems if you have ruled out an obvious leak.
• Check your coolant levels – No engine likes being hot and bothered.
• Check your oil levels – Clean the dipstick and ensure there is a good supply. If this changes significantly on a journey, something is not right.
• Check your fuel filters – You should be checking for a few things.
a) Water in the fuel. If you have a clear bulb to your separator, this should be seen clearly as water drops to the bottom. Using the valve at the bottom, bleed the system so the water is removed.
b) Diesel bug – If your fuel looks cloudy or has lumpy textures, you might have a bacterial infection. This can clog up the fuel system and cause starvation to your engine. Adding additives to your fuel is a good way to prevent you having to clean and flush the system, filters and lines.
c) Debris – If starting your engine after a period of time, you might find debris in the pre-fuel filter. This might mean that your fuel needs to be filtered and your tank flushed. Debris can cause engines to starve as the flow of fuel cannot pass through the system.
• Belts and hoses – Check the tension in your engine belts. Retention if required. Check that hoses are not perished and that the clips are all tight and sealed.
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