Smoke signals

Steph and the kids spent a second day exploring Austin and on their way home they called to let me know that smoke was coming out the hood of the truck.  ARRGGGHHH.  They made it back home and I met them out front so I could examine more closely.  Sure enough….white smoke coming out near firewall on passenger side.  I can see the source is at a clamp joint on a vertical section of….can you guess?  Thats right, the exhaust!!  It seems like this joint is known to get misaligned and smoke during a “regen”.  You can read all about how the Duramax handles regen here but the gist is the diesel particulate filter (DPF, also know as a “wallet shrinker”) gets soot build up in it if exhaust temperatures aren’t hot enough.  When you are pulling a 14.5k pound 5th wheel across the country I think the exhaust gets hot enough to keep ‘er clean.  But when you are putzing around town and sitting in traffic the fancy on-board computer decides that it needs to burn off some soot so it goes into “active regen” where fuel is injected directly into the exhaust system.

“Active regeneration dramatically reduces fuel economy since fuel is being used for purposes other than moving the vehicle”

So, we have this state of the art exhaust system that is supposed to reduce emissions but the same system purposefully uses fuel inefficiently?….I don’t get it.  Anyway, because I am such a diesel motor expert now I decided to ignore it because the next day we were hitching Ava up and would be trucking down to San Antonio which would surely heat things up and clean out the soot.

We also had a harddrive crash on one of our laptops and a battery fail in one of the kids’ tablets (2nd battery I’ve put in the thing too….crikey!).  But we’re all still healthy and still having fun!

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