Diesel Heater Warning Light: What Problems Can this Indicate?

Glow plugs are responsible for facilitating the proper functioning of a Diesel engine preheating the combustion chamber. Because of the way a diesel engine is designed, there are times when they need a little help getting started.

Diesel Heater Warning Light

They do need heaters for this. Now, just like any other part of a vehicle, this one too suffers from wear and tear, it can be faulty or broken, and we will know that with the help of the stove witness.

A vehicle’s instrument panel is equipped with many symbols that allow drivers to know the status of various components and systems.

This also includes a coil or spring indicator light, which is for the glow plugs. There are a few different reasons why this warning light can come on and indicate a malfunction of this mechanical part. Read on to learn more and how it affects you as a driver.

What are diesel heaters?

A heater is an essential part of starting a diesel engine. These are crucial especially in colder environments, as diesel has a higher density than petrol and freezes at a lower temperature (at -34 C; at -20 ºC it crystallizes and at -10 ºC it thickens).

Diesel engines rely on the heat created by compression in the chamber to start properly. When it lacks an external heat source and at the same time is exposed to extremely cold weather, a diesel engine cannot start.

The solutions to this problem are glow plugs or glow plugs. But with what we just said, it doesn’t mean they aren’t useful in the summer. We said it at the beginning: a heater is an indispensable part to run a diesel engine. This part is a heating element that: is activated during start-up when the motor temperature is low. That is why it takes a little longer for the engine to start after a night in the open air than after a lunch break in, for example, a transit bar.

A heater raises the temperature in the cylinders to facilitate the pressurization and detonation of diesel fuel. The system, normally have the driver wait for about 10 seconds while the glow plugs warm up the engine (time for the glow plug light on the instrument panel to stay on). Once the correct temperature is reached, the car will let you know that the witness has disappeared.

How do diesel heaters work?

In addition to oxygen and fuel, there is also a propellant requires an ignition point to function. The stoves provide ignition by heating the small ignition coil within the equivalent of the spark plug, using a 1.5V battery located on the edge of the stove. This battery can sometimes be found on board in certain newer vehicles.

The type of diesel and the material of the element itself determine how warm the heater will remain after the engine has been successfully started. The fuel, which contains methanol, will come into contact with the element, which is made of various alloyed metals, and the contact between the two will cause a catalytic reaction. This reaction heats the platinum while the methanol ignites.

What does the glow plug tell me?

Normally the glow plugs only light up when the engine is cold. In case this light blinks, is that there is a problem?. The most common reason to replace heaters is: age (from about 100,000 km).

Over time and after many, many cycles, a heater ages and cannot generate the heat it needs. Replacing a faulty heater should eliminate any problems you are experiencing. Well, why?

If the glow plugs are flashing, it is possible that: the vehicle’s engine management unit (ECU) has detected an error which could be related to one of the heaters, the control module of the above or even a sensor not necessarily directly related to it. Once the ECU detects a potential heater malfunction, it records the diagnostic data, which is then used by a qualified mechanic on their code reader to interpret and diagnose the problem.

When the glow plug symbol becomes visible in the car, it is likely that your motorized partner enter a “safe mode” (if relatively modern) to avoid damage to the engine. When you are in this setting, you may notice that your journal entry will experience a dramatic performance drop. Depending on the severity of the problem, it may be safe to drive the vehicle extremely short distances until the fault can be properly diagnosed and repaired, but not corrected.

It can be very stressful dealing with flashing glow plugs, and it can be just as annoying that the warning light does not come on at all. Both are warning signs of a car malfunction that could cause you unpleasant damage, such as a completely dead engine. That’s why it’s critical to immediately perform a professional vehicle diagnosis if one of the two alternatives is presented to you. Avoid driving as much as possible and never assume that “it’s something that can wait”.

Is it safe to drive with the glow plugs on?

Some engines may not even start until the warning light goes out, preventing drivers from starting the engine too early. We always have to wait for the warning light to go out before trying to start..

With a little patience, you can keep your engine running in the long run. And when it starts blinking in circulation, which we just mentioned a few lines above, the car will go into “safe mode” and engine performance will drop abruptly. That is indicative to go directly to the workshop.

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