If you own a diesel-engined vehicle, then you'll know that this type of transportation is renowned for its reliability. However, you do need to keep an eye out (and an ear open) for any impending signs of failure. In particular, you need to be aware of your diesel pump's performance. What should you be focusing on?
What Does the Pump Do?
Firstly, you should understand that your vehicle may have a mechanical or electrical pump, depending on its age. For mechanical options, the pump is mounted outside the fuel tank itself and operates through an internal diaphragm. If your vehicle is relatively modern, however, the electronic version sits inside the tank itself and is able to create far higher pressure levels, to service the complicated fuel injection engines that you find today.
In fact, pressure is all-important as the pump is not only responsible for delivering the fuel, but it has to be delivered at a constant rate and in correct volume.
The first thing you may notice is a general "spluttering" sensation when going along the road at a set speed. This indicates that pressure is being lost at the pump, although you may have taken on a batch of contaminated fuel in some cases.
When you are accelerating from stationary, you may also notice that the vehicle appears to jerk intermittently as it goes. This could indicate a malfunction in the pump, which causes the flow of fuel to stall and restart.
Some owners report a surge in power, even when they're not activating the engine through the throttle pedal. This can happen if the internal motor within the pump is not providing the correct amount of resistance to the diesel supply any more. This can also happen if there is some issue delivering electricity to the pump, so that the pressure is off kilter.
Failure to Start
Finally, you may not be able to start the engine at all if the pump has failed completely. You will be able to turn over the ignition, but the engine will not fire, as it is not receiving any fuel.
If you feel that the diesel pump needs to be changed, then you are best taking it to a qualified mechanic. This is a combustible environment, where electricity can be present and you will want to be safe, rather than being sorry.