Are you having engine problems with your heavy duty or diesel truck? Have you noticed that you have low engine power, overheating and engine smoke or poor fuel economy?

It could be time to use the tools that the professionals use to diagnose engine problems. A chassis dynamometer, often referred to as a dyno, can help you figure out exactly what is going wrong with your vehicle.

Dyno diagnostics are used by professional mechanics to help heavy duty and diesel trucks deliver peak performance. Engines can have a variety of problems and testing with a dyno can help you figure out how to approach repairs.

We’ll walk you through a few things you should know to help you get your truck back in good working order.

How Does Dyno Diagnostics Work?

Basically, engine technicians will put your vehicle on the dyno and let it run at full throttle. They are trained and certified to extract information from these tests and will immediately get feedback from the machine. They’re looking for your horsepower, RPMs, and torque levels to understand how much power your engine has — or how much it’s lost.

Dyno diagnostics can even be used on race cars to test their engine function the day before a big race.

Technicians may conduct what’s known as an inertia sweep test, which measures the force needed to accelerate a “flywheel” from a resting position to a pre-determined RPM. They might also conduct a controlled acceleration rate test, which helps them diagnose any acceleration problems your truck may have.

There is a wide range of dyno diagnostics and your technician will perform a variety of tests on your vehicle.

What Should I Look for in a Diagnostic Repair Shop?

First off, you’re going to want to find a place that has trained and certified technicians. Second, you should look for a dyno diagnostic location that also offers truck parts and repair.

If you’re going to invest in a dyno diagnostic, you should be ready to make the necessary repairs to your heavy duty or diesel truck. It’s the best kind of investment you can make because getting those repairs will save you money in the long-term.

We use a chassis dynamometer to optimize your truck. We’re committed to bringing your truck up to code and can help with powertrain problems. We have a water brake dynamometer that is used in several ways. It can be used to figure out your engine’s horsepower, make a detailed technical report for your drivetrain, and analyze any component failure.

It’s important to get the most out of your dyno session. Untrained technicians don’t know how to calibrate the dyno, which can result in a skewed outcome. When it’s time to choose a dyno diagnostic and repair shop, you should look for a company that can set you up with the skills to perform regular maintenance checks.

How Can I Tell If I Have Bad Fuel Economy?

There are several reasons to have a professional dyno diagnostic, and fuel economy is at the top of the list.

Your truck could be costing you thousands of dollars every year and you may not even realize it. Professional dyno technicians will test your car for fuel efficiency but what if you don’t even realize that you need the procedure done?

Check your tires and see if you have the right tire pressure. You don’t want to go by the maximum PSI that is printed on your tires. You should check for a small brass plate on the inside of the driver’s side door for the recommended pressure.

You may have air filters or oxygen sensors that have gone bad. That alone can affect your fuel mileage, much more than you realize. You could be paying another 20% to 25% on top of your normal fuel intake just to compensate for dirty air filters that are easily changed.

Finally, you might have injectors that should be replaced. It seems like such a small thing but it can negatively impact your fuel mileage in the extreme.

If you’ve dealt with all of these factors and you’re still noticing that you have poor fuel economy, you should look into getting a thorough dyno diagnostic.

Is It Time to Make Repairs?

There are more than 150,000 truck drivers in Canada, and chances are their trucks are in need of some repair. If you’re an owner-operator, you don’t want to risk letting those repairs go for too long.

Nobody wants to have to rebuild an engine or get a new transmission. When you get your dyno diagnostics done, the technicians will let you know the extent of your truck’s issues.

While it may seem easier to just fix the truck a little bit at a time, you should consider investing in a complete fix. That way, you’ll reduce wear and tear on your engine and hopefully avoid breakdowns and wasted fuel.

Overdrive Heavy Duty Services Ltd. has been open for 13 years and we are a family-owned and operated business.

We have an alignment pit, a tri-drive chassis dyno, two cranes, and 14 bays. We also offer convenient online payment options and are committed to providing top-quality service to heavy duty and diesel truck drivers.

Getting Ready for Your Dyno Diagnostic

Before you bring your truck in for a dyno diagnostic, take some time and get it ready. You’ll want to clear out the cab of your truck because technicians often use laptops and will need somewhere to put them.

If your truck is in major need of repairs, you should try to get at least some of them done before your dyno session. If your clutch is slipping, it could be difficult for technicians to get a proper read on your vehicle. Tire condition is also important to inspect prior to your dyno diagnostic service — bad tires could potentially blow up on the dyno, causing serious damage or injury.   

And finally, make sure that you have at least half a tank of fuel when you come in for the dyno session.

We’ve got the only tri-drive dyno in northeastern Alberta and we’re looking forward to meeting with you. Take a minute and book an appointment with us. We’ll be happy to take a look at your truck.