November 16, 2015

Five Tips to Minimize Cold Weather Effects on your Engine

John Deere compact machines are designed to start and run reliably during the winter months. Still, cold-weather operation requires a little extra care. By following these helpful tips, you can minimize the effect cold weather may have on your engine.

Tip 1: Use winter-grade fuel

When temperatures fall below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, use winter-grade fuel (No. 1-D in North America) for cold-weather operation. Winter-grade fuel has a lower cloud point, the temperature at which wax will begin to form and cause fuel filters to plug. It also has a lower pour point, the lowest temperature at which a fuel moves.

Tip 2: Add a diesel fuel flow additive

Winter-grade fuel allows you to operate at the lowest temperatures. But you can use John Deere Premium Diesel Fuel Conditioner (winter formula) or an equivalent fuel conditioner to treat non-winter-grade fuel (No. 2-D in North America) when temperatures drop to 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Fuel additives contain anti-gel chemistry, which decreases the fuel cloud point by 18 degrees Fahrenheit. For best results, use with untreated fuel. Follow all recommended instructions on the product label.

Tip 3: Opt for an engine-block heater

An optional engine block heater (a coolant heater) aids cold-weather starting.

Tip 4: Follow recommended engine oil and coolant requirements

Refer to your operator's manual for the proper diesel engine oil and engine coolant requirements. Use a seasonal-grade viscosity engine oil and a proper concentration of low-silicate antifreeze, as recommended.

Tip 5: Bone up on biodiesel blends

When operating with biodiesel blends, wax formation can occur at warmer temperatures. When temperatures drop to 41 degrees Fahrenheit, start treating biodiesel fuels with John Deere Premium Biodiesel Fuel Conditioner (winter formula). Use B5 or lower blends at temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, and use only winter-grade petroleum diesel fuel at temperatures below 14 degrees Fahrenheit.