|Photo source: American Petroleum Institute|
The article begins by noting that the Covid pandemic resulted in many diesel-powered trucks, buses and fleets sitting idle for much of 2020. Putting idled vehicles back in service involves a number of steps, but according to Jeffrey Harmening of the API, DEF maintenance is one of those things that can get overlooked.
DEF has a limited life span and may need to be changed before boing put back into service.
The American Petroleum Institute recommends that you determine when DEF was put in the vehicle. The storage life of DEF is about 12 months in optimal conditions. If DEF has been stored in the vehicle over the past 12 months, it is recommended that it be drained and replaced.
The author goes so far as to say you should check the expiration dates on the DEF you have stored on your shelves. You should dispose of the expired DEF in accordance with local regulations and order new DEF.
Harmening addresses the winterizing issue (DEF expands when it freezes) by reminding us not to have the DEF tank too full in freezing temperatures. Don't use additives to melt the DEF if it freezes. Your engine will start as normal and heaters will warm it to a working temperature.
After elaborating on purchasing and managing DEF in your shop, he closes with this summing up:
For shops and drivers, it’s important to know what you are putting into your DEF tank. The quality of the DEF going into your vehicle is as important as the quality of the engine oils or fuels used in your vehicles. Use of API-licensed Diesel Exhaust Fluid will ensure that it meets the high standards required by engine and vehicle manufacturers.
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You can read the full story here.
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