Diesel Engine Bearing Failure, Should I build my own engine?
Engine bearings are one of the smallest components of building your engine. Without the proper training and expertise, it can be one of the most costly mistakes you could make. If you don’t install the bearings correctly it could lead to a complete failure requiring costly repairs. Even the most experienced may want to avoid repeated failures.
Engine bearings are made of various materials and usually backed with a steel lining. The bearings could be a Bi-Metal with Aluminum or in Tri-Metal with Copper and Nickel Barrier. These Bearings are designed to reduce friction while holding the crankshaft in place within the engine block.
There are various reasons your bearings could fail. The most common failure you could experience is fatigue. Any foreign object between the bearing and crankshaft will cause fatigue. Your load capacity can also cause fatigue failure. The type of material, misalignment of the bearing, corrosion by chemical attack, or cavitation by sharp pressure points of oil. Using an impure lubricant can cause chemical corrosion and collapsing cavitation bubbles
If your engine bearing should fail. You are going to have to disassemble the engine and regrind the crankshaft. While installing the new bearing, you must be very cautious with the diameter, length, thickness, and oil clearance of your new bearing. If you are determined to do this yourself the most common repair needed after is replacing the bearing again due to misalignment, poor conforming of bearing back to housing, and wrong material.
While many projects are great do-it-yourself projects. The smallest imperfections or misalignment will require repeated disassemblies. Keep your diesel running and out of the shop by always getting it right the first time.
For questions on servicing contact our service department at 901-553-9847
Check out the Diesel Podcast for more information on Engine Bearing Failure.