So, you’ve finally decided to buy a truck.
Now that you have your budget in mind and you’ve taken note of what your needs are, choosing one should be a piece of cake, right? But with so many options available in the market and the ongoing debate between diesel vs gas engines, the purchasing process can be a bit tricky.
Both engines have their share of pros and cons, and it’s easy to get swayed by the arguments of different people.
Whether this is your first or nth time to buy a truck, we want you to make the most out of your hard-earned money. If you want to know what side we’re on, we won’t be the first one to tell you that you should go for diesel.
Popularly known for having more mileage and power, diesel trucks have too many benefits that you wouldn’t want to miss. Before we show you the reasons why you should get one, you must know how the engine came to be and how the latest models function.
The History of the Diesel Engine
To better understand how diesel truck parts work, let’s dive into its history.
The diesel engine was invented around the 1890s by a German engineer named Rudolf Diesel. During his time, steam was the most popularly used engine, and he was tasked to experiment and improve its efficiency. While working on a project, he suffered from an explosion that gave him serious injuries.
What appeared to be a grave misfortune ended up becoming his greatest blessing.
He then decided to put steam engines behind him and worked on developing his own model. The idea that highly compressed air can cause a better combustion process laid the foundation for his invention.
Putting his theory into practice, he was finally able to develop an internal combustion engine after nearly a decade of hard work. Even though his engine did not meet the 75% efficiency standard he set, the 26.2% efficiency he achieved was significant enough to eventually beat the efficiency that gas (6% efficiency) and steam engines (12% efficiency) had.
Diesel engines allowed users to perform tasks more efficiently, and it eventually took over steam as the most popular engine.
As more people eventually started to recognize its value, like-minded engineers continuously worked on developing his models. Diesel engines were eventually integrated into commercial and military machines, and by the end of 1912, it’s estimated that there were 70,000 diesel engines being used.
Today, modern diesel engines power some of the biggest machines known to man. Whether it’s a truck, train, or ship, modern diesel engines are now at the heart of these vehicles.
How Does a Diesel Engine Work?
Diesel and gas engines are both combustion engines that operate on the same four-stroke cycle:
- Intake Stroke – Fuel gets injected into the engine, and its pistons descend in order to suck air through into its valves.
- Compression Stroke – The valves close and the piston starts to move up, compressing the air and mixing it with the fuel.
- Power Stroke – The mixture is spontaneously ignited and releases heat energy to push the piston back down.
- Exhaust Stroke – The mixture is pushed out of the cylinder through the exhaust valves and the cycle starts again.
Even though the way they operate may seem similar, both engines have different means of igniting fuel. Since the two fuels burn differently, diesel engines use a fuel injector, and gas engines use a spark plug.
This is where the pros and cons start to take shape.
Diesel doesn’t mix properly with air. However, if small amounts of diesel are sprayed into high-temperature air, spontaneous combustion will occur. On the other hand, gas engines introduce and mix the air and fuel simultaneously. Since gas evaporates quickly and mixes easily with air, a small spark is enough to supply combustion in the engine.
If you haven’t noticed, cars with gas engines are usually quieter and vibrate less.
Since gas and air mix well, gas engines relatively have a smoother combustion process. In a diesel engine, the combustion is uncontrollable and could begin anywhere in the combustion chamber, resulting in excessive noise and vibration. To counter this problem, diesel engines make use of a large and rugged design.
A diesel engine has greater efficiency because of its higher compression ratio.
Since gas engines introduce fuel and air together, the mixture limits the engine’s compression capacity. In a diesel engine, the air and fuel are injected at different stages of the cycle. Since it only compresses the air, it has a greater compression capacity.
A diesel engine compresses at a ratio of 14:1 up to 25:1 while gas engines have compression ratios of 8:1 and 12:1. Regardless if you’re using your car for light or heavyweight purposes, having more power will always be an advantage.
For a visual representation of how diesel and gas engines work, check out this video.
Why You Should Go Diesel When Buying a Truck
With no clear end in sight, the diesel vs gasoline battle is expected to last for many more years. As your reliable trucking partners, we want you to be on the winning side and make the right investment. To help you decide, we want you to be aware of the many benefits that diesel engine trucks offer.
Diesel engine trucks have more mileage as compared to gas trucks.
While it may depend on the model you have and your maintenance habits, an average diesel truck could run 500,000 to 800,000 miles in the course of its lifetime. Since the truck’s engine was built to withstand high combustion activity, its sturdy design gives it the ability to last longer and be free from any major breakdown.
Do you live in a steep and mountainous area? Are you always hauling large items for work? A diesel truck can be used for commercial or personal use.
Diesel engines produce a lot more torque, which makes it capable of heavy-duty activities. If you’re planning to make deliveries from one county to another, or if you want to go on a long road trip with your family, getting a diesel engine truck will allow you to do that and more.
If you take a look at fuel station prices alone, it’s easy to think that diesel trucks are cheaper than gasoline vehicles. And if you take performance into context, you’ll realize that diesel actually costs much less.
Diesel can generate more energy and burn at a relatively slower rate as compared to its gas engine counterpart, one full tank of diesel will last way longer than a full tank of gasoline. If you drive on the highway often, choosing diesel will help you go the extra mile without breaking the bank.
Relatively Cheaper Maintenance Costs
Just like any other vehicle, regular maintenance checks are a must to ensure quality and performance.
There’s no denying that the maintenance of diesel trucks is more expensive. Since its parts are more complex, they require the care of specialists which can result in higher fees. But if you’re a responsible owner and have your truck checked regularly, you shouldn’t be too concerned about this problem.
The good thing about diesel engines is that they were specifically built to be tough. If you take good care of your truck, you can depend on them to last longer without spending on any major repairs.
Better Models Are Now Available
Diesel trucks of today aren’t only affordable, they’re also more eco-friendly and run smoother than ever before.
Thanks to innovations in the automotive industry and the efforts of different government agencies for environmental conservation, you can readily purchase high-performing and eco-friendly models. Noisy and vibrating diesel trucks are now a thing of the past; sleek and stylish designs are now available with gas emissions at its lowest.
Higher Resale Value
If you need to sell your vehicle for some reason, a diesel-powered truck should give you some financial breathing room. Second-hand truck buyers and dealers are always in search of reliable and excellently-maintained vehicles. Since they significantly have more longevity than trucks with gas engines, buyers are frequently on the lookout for them.
It’s impressive to see how diesel trucks have developed over the years. Now that it’s more affordable and efficient, purchasing one is budget-friendlier. Before you start considering your options, here are three final tips to remember:
First: When purchasing any vehicle, you need to consider the hidden costs as well.
At first glance, a diesel truck may seem more expensive as compared to a gas engine truck. Since diesel prices, maintenance fees, and engine parts cost more, you may be convinced to go for gas instead. But if you consider factors such as durability, purpose, and efficiency, you’ll save a lot by going diesel.
Second: No matter what your reason for buying may be, it’s better to have a truck with more capabilities.
Even if you don’t go off-road or deliver loads of goods all the time, it’s good to have a truck with more power, mileage, and longevity. You’ll never know when you’ll need to haul heavy and bulky items, so it’s better to be prepared for unexpected situations. One day, it may even end up helping you or your loved ones get through a particular dilemma.
Third: A truck is a big investment so take the time to reflect and look at the bigger picture.
At the end of the day, your financial situation and personal preference will be your deciding factors. No matter what your reason for buying is, your level of satisfaction will ultimately depend on the option that works best for your circumstance. Be patient when making your decision and plan to the tiniest detail.
Choose performance, affordability, and sustainability by going diesel. We hope that this simple guide was able to help you out. For all your diesel trucking needs, be sure to visit PureDieselPower and go through our huge selection of diesel engine products.