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Note: Before starting the engine, do all the recommended pre-trip inspections and daily maintenance. Check the engine oil and fuel levels, and drain contaminants from the fuel/water separator (optional).

Note: If you drain the fuel/water separator completely, you may have to prime the fuel system.

Note especially the location and function of the following: ‪

  • Oil Pressure Gauge
  • Coolant Temperature Gauge
  • Low Oil Pressure/High Coolant Temperature Warning Light
  • Water In Fuel Warning Light
  • Tachometer
  • Air Restriction Indicator

When starting the engine, and while driving, watch for any signs of engine problems. If the engine overheats, uses excessive fuel or lubricating oil, vibrates, misfires, makes unusual noises, or shows an unusual loss of power, turn the engine off as soon as possible and determine the cause. Frequently, engine damage may be avoided by a quick response to early indications of problems. ‪

Checking the Batteries

Use only batteries that have been correctly filled and serviced. To provide corrosion protection, apply pumpable dielectric grease, part number 48-02349-000, liberally to the terminal pads. Approved suppliers are listed in Table . ‪

Manufacturer ‪

Lubricant or Part Number ‪

Shell is a registered trademark of Shell Oil Corporation. ‪

No. 71032; No. 71306 ‪

Texaco is a registered trademark of Texaco, Inc. ‪

No. 955 ‪

Quaker State is a registered trademark of Quaker State Oil Refinery Company. ‪

No. NYK-77 ‪

Approved Electrical Lubricants

Battery Explosion and Acid Burn

To avoid injury from battery explosion or contact with battery acid, work in a well ventilated area, wear protective clothing, and avoid sparks or flames near the battery. If you come in contact with battery acid:

  • Flush your skin with water.
  • Apply baking soda or lime to help neutralize the acid.
  • Flush your eyes with water.
  • Get medical attention immediately.

Checking the Oil Level

Check the oil level as follows: ‪

  1. Check the oil level using the oil dipstick. See Figure 42141 .

    1. Maximum Fill Level ‪

    2. Minimum Fill Level ‪

    Oil Dipstick


    To avoid injury from slipping and falling, immediately clean up any spilled liquids.

  2. If necessary, top off by filling engine oil through the oil fill collar until the maximum fill level on the oil dipstick has been reached. See Figure 42868 .

    Oil Fill Collar

Checking the Coolant Level (Cold Check)

Check engine coolant level as follows: ‪

  1. Ensure that all coolant plugs in the bottom of the radiator and on the radiator outlet pipe are secure and tight.
  2. Check the coolant level. The cooling system is correctly filled when the coolant is between the maximum and minimum marks on the surge tank.

Adding Fuel

Note the following when adding fuel: ‪

  1. Add winter or summer grade fuel according to the season of the year.
  2. Work in the cleanest conditions possible.
  3. Prevent water from entering the fuel tank.

Priming the Fuel System

Prime the fuel system as follows: ‪


Correct torque on the high pressure lines is critical. Incorrect torques could result in leaks or lack of power due to restricted fuel flow. ‪

  1. Make sure that all high-pressure and low-pressure lines are securely tightened.
  2. If equipped with a hand pump on the fuel/water separator, work the hand pump 50 times.

    Note: There should be a strong resistance in the hand pump, caused by the pressure build-up within the fuel system.


    To avoid injury before starting and running the engine, ensure the vehicle is parked on a level surface, parking brake is set, and the wheels are blocked.


    Diesel engine exhaust and some of its constituents are known to the State of California to cause cancer, birth defects, and other reproductive harm.

    • Always start and operate an engine in a well ventilated area.
    • If operating an engine in an enclosed area, vent the exhaust to the outside.
    • Do not modify or tamper with the exhaust system or emission control system.
  3. Crank the engine for 30 seconds at a time, but no longer. Before cranking the engine again, wait at least two minutes. The engine should start within six 30-second attempts.