Thursday, 19 July 2012

MTU (Detroit Diesel) Filters

A little while ago when I was doing all the units for the city of Abbotsford I had to do some "gravy" jobs of going to new sites and filling out a data sheet.  You have to take down all model and serial numbers as well as part numbers for filters, batteries, etc.  You also have to take note of how a load test would be performed on the unit (how much cable, where to set up, where to park, more than one person required....)  It is a very easy and clean job so I was pretty happy.  Plus I knew that since they were all city units and I would have to be escorted to each one by a city worker that visiting a few sites would turn into a full day job.  Oh the joys of working on city worker time!  
I was filling out the data sheets for a new MTU engine and thought I was losing my mind because I could not find the oil filter(s).  I was looking around everywhere thinking they were possibly plumbed remotely or hidden somehow.  It ended up they were right on top of the engine in front of my face.  I already have a bit of a love-hate relationship with Detroit Diesel engines (or MTU same thing).  When I look at the way these filters are mounted I can tell they aren't the easiest to replace.  I love spin on filters and loathe filter cartridges almost passionately!  These filters are upside down on top of the engine to make sure that the largest amount of mess possible is made.  I definitely would change these guys before warming up the engine!  Not only would you have hot black oil spilling everywhere, including the ECU which is the filters next-door-neighbour, but you also have the piping hot exhaust to bash your knee against while you try to climb over the engine to reach the filters.  I realize not everyone is as vertically challenged as I am but I think it would be an inconvenient situation no matter your height.  Oh and on top of that it is a sub base tank mounted unit with the tank sunken into the floor with a big gap around it the perfect size to drop all of your tools down or in my case my body down!  You would have to step over the gap and do a balancing act on the frame while straddling the fuel priming panel and reaching around the exhaust to  pull off the filters.  You would want a telescopic magnet for this one for sure.  The first picture shows where the filters are located so you can get an idea of what I am whining and complaining about and the second shows "the gap".