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Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors

Posted By: CCCC

Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

I have been driving a diesel truck for over 20 years and have never used fuel additives, and have never seemed to need such. . Now, in a different diesel (Duramax) we have a situation where slight excess of fuel at idle is giving grey smoke and a rich odor. Strongest diagnosis from owners and diesel mechanics points to particulate buildup at injector seals and strongest recommendation is a good cleaning agent run in fuel. Maybe even an oil filter full at oil change time.

Some prominent opinions rank Lucas Fuel Treatment, Stanadyne Performance Formula One Shot and Archoil Fuel Treatment as top solutions.

Relative cost aside, do you have experience with such treatments and strong views on which would be best in this situation? Thanks for knowledgeable insights.
Posted By: Jim_Conrad

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Check balance rates and save money for a set of injectors.
Posted By: EdM

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Paul,

Not a diesel owner but a Porsche and Audi owner and both dealerships push BG products as do a few non-factory "German" shops that I have used.

https://www.bgprod.com/
Posted By: K1500

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

What year Duramax and is it deleted?
Posted By: norm99

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

I use a Canadian version almost all the time because of low sulfer diesel.

norm
Posted By: CCCC

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Thanks, Ed - look like very good products - one in particular seems applicable.

K1500 - 2003 Duramax, 108k miles,, no delete, balance/fuel rates (injector fire pulse width) apparently decent and fuel mileage has not dropped.

Thx for responses.
Posted By: coobie

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Try opti-lube good stuff.I run it year around.
Posted By: 35

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Check out Seafoam.
Posted By: flintlocke

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Stanadyne is the only product I have used successfully in industrial diesels subjected to days of cold weather idling. Stanadyne also is a large mfr of pumps and injectors. If an additive can help, which I kinda doubt, it's where I would go. I know zero about Duramax injectors. In older injection systems, after days of idling you would get carbon buildup at the tips, destroying the spray pattern so the fuel would dribble from the tip instead of atomize causing incomplete combustion. 50 years in heavy equipment repair.
Posted By: sackett

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Go with the Stanadyne additive. It does work.

Disclaimer: I did work for the 'dyne for almost 18 years in R&D, mainly building pumps.
Posted By: renegade50

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Originally Posted by 35
Check out Seafoam.



frown frown laugh
Posted By: Showdog75

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

A 2003 duramax is a lb7 and they don't have any emissions stuff from the factory. Bad thing is they eat injectors and it's not a cheap replacement. You may get some extra life out of what you have but do plan and budget for injectors in your future. Don't buy a stock replacement when and/or if you do. Look into injectors from somebody like Lincoln Diesel. The lb7 is a great engine other than the injector issues.
Posted By: sdgunslinger

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

I've used this product in a tractor that was running a bit rough and to my surprise it smoothed the engine out , so maybe worth a try in some cases.........



https://www.hotshotsecret.com/diesel-extreme/
Posted By: TrueGrit

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

If it was a Ford this stuff would fix your problem.
https://www.hotshotsecret.com/
Posted By: Dave_in_WV

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Marvels Mystery Oil will clean them up.
Posted By: Deans

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

I have used Stanadyne in my 6.0 since day one. I have also used Hotshot Secrets with oil change.
Posted By: NH Hunter

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

I use Power Service in my Cummins. Cummins approved/endorsed. White bottle in winter, silver in summer.
Posted By: high_country_

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

A little digging on lb7's will shiw you that everything under the sun has been tried to save stick injectors.

Id start pushing bucks into a pile, saving for some of the newer units.
Posted By: JGRaider

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Originally Posted by sdgunslinger
I've used this product in a tractor that was running a bit rough and to my surprise it smoothed the engine out , so maybe worth a try in some cases.........

https://www.hotshotsecret.com/diesel-extreme/




This is good stuff, and what I use. Today's ULSD diesel fuels suck compared to the diesel fuels in the past. They are low on lubricity, cetane, etc and this additive helps.
Posted By: CCCC

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Originally Posted by flintlocke
- - - In older injection systems, after days of idling you would get carbon buildup at the tips, destroying the spray pattern so the fuel would dribble from the tip instead of atomize causing incomplete combustion, - -

Given decent to very good engine performance otherwise, I am thinking/hoping the idle smoke issue is this.

Originally Posted by Showdog75
- - - You may get some extra life out of what you have but do plan and budget for injectors in your future. Don't buy a stock replacement when and/or if you do. Look into injectors from somebody like Lincoln Diesel. The lb7 is a great engine other than the injector issues.- - -

Understood - well aware of Duramax injector wear in those years. This truck rarely is used in town or short haul - mostly long runs at higher speeds. So, hope to diminish the idle smoke issue and nurse these injectors for extended time. If at the point where testing/performance call for replacement, probably will take my time and do it here. Thanks for the suggestion on Lincoln.

And, to all, thanks for the thoughts on the additives - keep that coming. I need to try something soon. I have used Seafoam quite a bit for gasoline applications and a day or two ago a friend reminded me that the product contains alcohol. Seems likely not the best for diesel engines.
Posted By: Jim_Conrad

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

.....balance rates.....
Posted By: strikeu

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Originally Posted by sdgunslinger
I've used this product in a tractor that was running a bit rough and to my surprise it smoothed the engine out , so maybe worth a try in some cases.........



https://www.hotshotsecret.com/diesel-extreme/



this
Posted By: jimone

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

5 gallons of Jet A smartened up my 7.3.
Posted By: CCCC

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Originally Posted by Jim_Conrad
.....balance rates.....

Got this - earlier post - Thx.
Posted By: jaguartx

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Does anyone know if Seafoam eats up fuel hose lines?
Posted By: Oakster

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

Originally Posted by CCCC
I have been driving a diesel truck for over 20 years and have never used fuel additives, and have never seemed to need such. . Now, in a different diesel (Duramax) we have a situation where slight excess of fuel at idle is giving grey smoke and a rich odor. Strongest diagnosis from owners and diesel mechanics points to particulate buildup at injector seals and strongest recommendation is a good cleaning agent run in fuel. Maybe even an oil filter full at oil change time.

Some prominent opinions rank Lucas Fuel Treatment, Stanadyne Performance Formula One Shot and Archoil Fuel Treatment as top solutions.

Relative cost aside, do you have experience with such treatments and strong views on which would be best in this situation? Thanks for knowledgeable insights.


My brother is a good mechanic and has suggested that I run Stanadyne in each tank of diesel I run. The problem he is trying to avoid is the dry diesel fuel that is being created now. Engines are better protected with the lubricity added from the diesel fuel additives. I have been using Stanadyne for about 6 years now.
Posted By: norm99

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/08/21

cetane is what Ford recomends in Canada for their engins , don't know about duramax,
norm
Posted By: CCCC

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

Originally Posted by jaguartx
Does anyone know if Seafoam eats up fuel hose lines?
My experience is "no". Whatever degree of "alcohol" is in Seafoam is not ethanol and that product has been helpful to me, mostly in small engines, and zero damage..

Now - eth caused havoc for me with our old trucks when I was out of commission during a winter and was not able to run them periodically. Eth gathers moisture - caused lots of metal tank/line corrosion, ate fuel pump diaphragms and fuel hoses, and some carb components. Just now finally getting all of that straightened out.
Posted By: RoninPhx

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

you ain't living up where the eagles sour now that you are down south.
i don't know if that has an effect or not.
every once in a while i put a can of sea foam in the tank.
it's worked wonders in motorcycles for me
Posted By: mark shubert

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

My old diesel mechanic used to only recommend Marvel Mystery Oil, or the Lucas product.
I'd double-check with him, but he died in a car wreck ~ 10 days ago.
Posted By: RickBin

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

GM makes a product. I used it once. Still had to swap injectors shortly thereafter.

I have a Cali 2003 LB7, and yes it came with EGR, catalytic, vacuum pump, etc. Sucks, but it is what it is.

Smoke at idle is classic sign of impending injector failure. Get your balance rates checked, as mentioned, and get ready. frown

Lincoln Diesel treated me right. My injector bodies were fine, so they refitted them with the updated nozzles. That was I wanna say 5 years ago …. I was concerned at the time, but it turns out to be the right call for me. I monitor balance rates myself, and so far, I’m good.

If you’re handy, injectors can be done DIY. It's a big job, but not particularly technical. Just a lot of labor that I'd rather do myself than pay for at shop rates.

Ran me about $1600 in parts from Lincoln. Probably another couple hundred bucks in incidentals and miscellaneous, and the job took me a long weekend plus (I believe shop time is estimated at 30 hours if memory serves), with me taking my sweet time and taking lots of pics before I disassembled.

The EGR and smog stuff REALLY adds a chore to the job if you have that.

No matter who does it, make SURE they replace the hard fuel lines.

Finally, I am a believer in secondary filtration and water separation. I run an Airdog and a Nicktane before the OEM filter, and have for many years. Cheap insurance.

Good luck, and check out dieselplace.com for a very detailed DIY with pictures. That's what I used.

If/when mine go again, nobody but me is going into my motor.

Rick
Posted By: saddlesore

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

Two types of additive. Demulsifier and an emulsifier.One separates the water and your water filter takes it out. The other emulsifies the water and it goes thru your injectors. This is what a diesel mechanic told me so I may be really out in the sticks here. Chevy recommends the demusilfier and I use the StanadyneTop Performance in my 2019 Duramax .No trouble yet at 15K.

When I had my 98 Cummins, Power Service which is an emulsifier, I believe, was recommended.I never had any injector problems,but went thru 3 injector pumps
Posted By: Dave_in_WV

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

Originally Posted by mark shubert
My old diesel mechanic used to only recommend Marvel Mystery Oil, or the Lucas product.
I'd double-check with him, but he died in a car wreck ~ 10 days ago.


A friend had a truck repair shop and told me about using Marvels Mystery Oil. I passed it on to others that used and with good results.
Posted By: Heym06

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

I just pour three ounces of two stroke oil in the tank, every other fill up! Been doing it since 2008, when I got an 06 Duramax! No issues todate. Only have 134000 miles on mine!
Posted By: CCCC

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

Originally Posted by mark shubert
My old diesel mechanic used to only recommend Marvel Mystery Oil, or the Lucas product. I'd double-check with him, but he died in a car wreck ~ 10 days ago.
Mark, denoting old age here, for I have been using Marvel Mystery Oil in various specific applications for 66 years. Dad swore by it and got me going - it has been a big plus. especially for top-end lube on older OHV engines. I simply never connected that idea with diesel injectors - maybe because the Dodge Cummins is almost to 350K with nary an injector hiccup. We have only put about 6K miles on this 03 Duramax - it is at 108K well-maintained miles and I'm already fussing with injectors. Good and rather flexible diesel engine, but not near a Cummins 24V.
Posted By: dennisinaz

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

I had best luck with 2' stroke oil myself. I bought a whole shopping cart full at Circle k one time for $1/qt. That sold me on it. Standyne is probably better but far more expensive. I think i would try MMO first
Posted By: RickBin

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

What year is the Cummins that has 350K on the clock, if you don’t mind my asking?
Posted By: WYcoyote

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

If I wasn't such a cheap bastard, I'd use Opti-lube or Stanadyne.

But I use Walmart 2-stroke oil instead. In a Cummins.
Posted By: 45_100

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

When tney reduced the sulphur content of the diesel, they reduced the lubricity. There used to be a lubricity table where someone compared several different products to add lubricity back into diesel fuel. Some of the additives included used motor oil, Marvel Mystery Oil, transmission fluid, two cycle oil and several other things. As I recall two cycle oil was the best for restoring lubricity. Used motor oil was one of the worst.
Posted By: Remington6MM

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

How about using ATF?
Posted By: CCCC

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

Originally Posted by RickBin
GM makes a product. I used it once. Still had to swap injectors shortly thereafter.

I have a Cali 2003 LB7, and yes it came with EGR, catalytic, vacuum pump, etc. Sucks, but it is what it is.

Smoke at idle is classic sign of impending injector failure. Get your balance rates checked, as mentioned, and get ready. frown

Lincoln Diesel treated me right. My injector bodies were fine, so they refitted them with the updated nozzles. That was I wanna say 5 years ago …. I was concerned at the time, but it turns out to be the right call for me. I monitor balance rates myself, and so far, I’m good.

If you’re handy, injectors can be done DIY. It's a big job, but not particularly technical. Just a lot of labor that I'd rather do myself than pay for at shop rates.

Ran me about $1600 in parts from Lincoln. Probably another couple hundred bucks in incidentals and miscellaneous, and the job took me a long weekend plus (I believe shop time is estimated at 30 hours if memory serves), with me taking my sweet time and taking lots of pics before I disassembled.

The EGR and smog stuff REALLY adds a chore to the job if you have that.

No matter who does it, make SURE they replace the hard fuel lines.

Finally, I am a believer in secondary filtration and water separation. I run an Airdog and a Nicktane before the OEM filter, and have for many years. Cheap insurance.

Good luck, and check out dieselplace.com for a very detailed DIY with pictures. That's what I used.

If/when mine go again, nobody but me is going into my motor.

Rick

Thanks - helpful - same year/model, but no Cali stuff.
Posted By: CCCC

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

Originally Posted by RickBin
What year is the Cummins that has 350K on the clock, if you don’t mind my asking?

2001 Dodge 2500 4wd with HO 24 valve Cummins. Bought new - two drivers only - 85% to 90% me.
Posted By: ironbender

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

I wouldn’t use 2-stroke oil, ATF, MMO, or anything similar in a newer diesel with a DPF.

They are probably fine in older engines. I've used 2-stroke and ATF in my '93 n/a 7.3 F250 with no problems.
Posted By: RickBin

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

Originally Posted by CCCC
Originally Posted by RickBin
What year is the Cummins that has 350K on the clock, if you don’t mind my asking?

2001 Dodge 2500 4wd with HO 24 valve Cummins. Bought new - two drivers only - 85% to 90% me.


Reason I ask is because when the big 3 went to common rail fuel injection on the diesels, in the early 2000’s or so, I’m pretty sure GM and Dodge were using similar Bosch injectors and CP3 pump. Pressures were in the 23,000 units range, whereas prior engines were orders of magnitude lower pressure, like 10%, and were much, much easier on injectors — and also had much lower performance potential. Common rail made turbo diesels come alive.

Comparing pre-common-rail injector durability to early common-rail is apples to alligators. 350K on factory injectors sounds pre-common-rail.

My understanding is the high pressure common rail injectors were developed by Bosch using Euro diesel standards, and our US diesel was not as clean, and the injectors showed it, especially early on.

Another thing, our LB7s didn’t eat injectors any more than any other motors using the first gen Bosch fuel system of that era, BUT, our injectors are under the valve covers, making them significantly more trouble to get to. We’re talking hours.

And yes, injectors got better in later gens, and as older LB7s with some miles started showing injector issues, they were disfavored by some. But it was an injector issue, not a motor issue. GM also made injectors more accessible in later gens by not putting them under the valve covers anymore, so LB7s do suck hind teat in that regard.

But nowadays I don’t think you’ll be able to source first-gen, non-improved injectors, so if/when you do have to replace them, except for them being a PITA to reach, once done installing the newest tech Bosch, your injectors will be as solid as any.

At just over 100K miles, your motor is just breaking in!

You don’t know how fortunate you are not to have to deal with all that smog BS when dealing with injectors. Worst part of the job for me, by far.

Did I mention new hard fuel lines or bust?

smile





Posted By: M16

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

I use BG. Great stuff.
Posted By: MIKEWERNER

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

I like this channel.

Project Farm

Originally Posted by CCCC
Originally Posted by mark shubert
My old diesel mechanic used to only recommend Marvel Mystery Oil, or the Lucas product. I'd double-check with him, but he died in a car wreck ~ 10 days ago.
Mark, denoting old age here, for I have been using Marvel Mystery Oil in various specific applications for 66 years. Dad swore by it and got me going - it has been a big plus. especially for top-end lube on older OHV engines. I simply never connected that idea with diesel injectors - maybe because the Dodge Cummins is almost to 350K with nary an injector hiccup. We have only put about 6K miles on this 03 Duramax - it is at 108K well-maintained miles and I'm already fussing with injectors. Good and rather flexible diesel engine, but not near a Cummins 24V.


Posted By: JGRaider

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

All of that 2 stroke oil, Marvel, etc doesn't do anything to increase cetane numbers, which are generally lacking in modern diesel fuels.
Posted By: CCCC

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/09/21

RickBin - thanks for the background on the Bosch components/common fuel rail/higher op pressures into the 2000s diesels. It all fits. Also glad I don't have the Cail add-ons in this Duramax. I knew about the valve cover matter before buying this 2003 and was thinking that a 2005/06 would be better for me due to that factor, but I knew this owner and the truck and that it had been very well treated - thought that more important. It was a good move - pleased with it.
Posted By: Heym06

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/10/21

Originally Posted by JGRaider
All of that 2 stroke oil, Marvel, etc doesn't do anything to increase cetane numbers, which are generally lacking in modern diesel fuels.

I use 2 stroke oil for lubricity, kind of like saliva! I have been doing the 2 stroke oil, in my 06 Duramax since 2008! Figure it can't hurt!
Posted By: dennisinaz

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/11/21

Originally Posted by CCCC
Originally Posted by RickBin
What year is the Cummins that has 350K on the clock, if you don’t mind my asking?

2001 Dodge 2500 4wd with HO 24 valve Cummins. Bought new - two drivers only - 85% to 90% me.



I drove it once
Posted By: atvalaska

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/11/21

Stanadyne... farm project ..is your friend
Posted By: atvalaska

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/11/21

Originally Posted by Heym06
I just pour three ounces of two stroke oil in the tank, every other fill up! Been doing it since 2008, when I got an 06 Duramax! No issues todate. Only have 134000 miles on mine!
...me to ..until ...farm project....
Posted By: 45_100

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/11/21

Originally Posted by dennisinaz
Originally Posted by CCCC
Originally Posted by RickBin
What year is the Cummins that has 350K on the clock, if you don’t mind my asking?

2001 Dodge 2500 4wd with HO 24 valve Cummins. Bought new - two drivers only - 85% to 90% me.



I drove it once


My wife drove it once!
Posted By: victoro

Re: Diesel fuel treatment to clean injectors - 06/11/21

Originally Posted by NH Hunter
I use Power Service in my Cummins. Cummins approved/endorsed. White bottle in winter, silver in summer.


I've been using Power Service mixed with TWC3 2 cycle oil in my 2005 Dodge diesel since I bought it new and haven't had any injector or injector pump problems yet. I was told it uses the same injectors as the early Duramax Chevys.
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