|The Mann oil filter|
What your Volkswagen diesel really wants
The choice of which oil to use is a hotly debated topic in the VW community. To see what I mean, just check out the forum on the Samba (see my Vanagon related links) and search for "oil". If you find you are slipping into a comatose state after reading through all those pages, check out the discussions about tires for some stimulating tete-a-tete.
Diesel engines require a certain classification of motor oil due to many factors such as high operating temperature, extreme duty cycle, soot accumulation, low sulpher fuel, etc. One doesn't just put passenger car/truck motor oil in and hope for the best. I chose 4.5 quarts of Chevron Delo 400 LE HD 15W40 for Westly and he chugged it greedily.
Back at Auto Sports Imports, while I had the attention of that sagacious frau, I ordered a fuel filter as well. This time I was presented with a Bosch product (457.434.106). I had installed many Bosch parts in my air-cooled past, so I recognized it to be a quality brand. I should check online though to see if they have changed corporate affiliation or manufacturing locale.
Diesel engines demand clean fuel. Any contaminants will result in problems like difficult or no starting, clogged fuel injectors, corrosion, broken internal parts; the equivalent of a really bad hair day for your engine. Properly maintained and regularly changed, they protect your engine from dirt, rust particles, water, microbes (they feed on diesel fuel) and keep air out of the fuel line. Diesel fuel filters tend to be large and have water separators with drains. Some are heated as diesel fuel can gel at very low temperatures.
|Westly's fuel filter. The screw on top is for bleeding air out of the line|
Underneath is a fitting for draining water & sediment
I noticed that the brown fuel line running from the filter to the injection pump had a small crack and was allowing a few air bubbles in. A query to the online Vanagon community revealed that it could be replaced with 1/4" id X 3/8" od polyethylene tubing but if I were planning to run used vegetable oil (yes, this can be done) I would need a Viton line which is more expensive. I chose the poly which was about 25 cents a foot at my friendly Ace Hardware and it was a quick replacement. Soaking the ends in hot water makes them just pliable enough to easily push over the barbed fittings. I keep a spare 60" in my "just-in case".
|Don't accidentally put gas in a diesel fuel tank|