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I did six years in the Navy as an engineman (diesel maintenance & repairs) and my Chief always complained about running the diesel generators for too long with a light load. Because of the light loads the engines were building up soot and carbon in the cylinders sooner than they should be and increasing the maintenance and repairs required. Anyway my question: Was he full of it? Wouldn't it be burnt off during a high load? And would a cummins truck die early if it was just driven around town empty all day with no load? If so would propane prevent this with more efficient combustion? I want a cummins truck more than I need one.
 

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The Cheif was likely correct, however there is a big difference between generators and trucks. A generator can run for days with a steady load, a truck doesn't always run at a steady load or rate. A truck is likely to accellerate, decellerate, run at various rpm and load, and thats during just one trip. Drivig a Cummins with no load in the bed will not hurt it.

Propane will run cleaner than diesel alone, usually propane is added to increase power.

Ed
 

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Running around town with a light load wont hurt anything, what hurts the things is exended idle time, especially on the newest gen cummins, I've had to replace a couple cat. converters on the 04 1/2's because they got clogged up with extended idling.
 

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I did 6 years in the Air Force as an equipment mechanic. We used to "wetstack" our diesel powered generators on a scheduled basis (every six months?). Basically we hooked it up to a device (load bank) that applied a heavy load to the generator, requiring the engine to operate at full capacity for a set amount of time. Same type of theory as "burning the carbon out" of a gas engine. Made for a nice toasty place to stand during the winter too. The load bank was just a bunch of resistance coils that were fan cooled so we stood in the airflow coming off the coils to warm up on those freezing cold graveyard shifts.
 
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