Pete 379 and the new Engine Polygraph

2020, Caterpillar -

Pete 379 and the new Engine Polygraph

With great pleasure I am introducing you to a very special old school owner operator from Mississippi.  JR Hillhouse’s beautiful black 2007 379 Peterbilt is powered by an NXS Caterpillar that JR’s gets his hands on every Saturday.  You see the old school way of trucking was to drive for 5 days and work on your truck the 6th day.  This is what JR does.  He changes his own oil (Mobil 15-40), greases, replaces the brakes, tires, washes and waxes the truck.  This Pete gets hand washed at home every Saturday, waxed every 2 months with McGuire’s and an F-11 topcoat with every wash.  I personally use Lucas Slick Mist on my vehicles with every wash.  JR’s Pete produces 626 horsepower to the ground or 736 horsepower to the flywheel.  Every time I talk to JR and ask him how the Pete is running his answer is “She’ll do anything you ask her to do”, and I can see the smile on his face.   JR even has his own 4000-gallon above ground fuel tank at home and usually purchases 3,500 gallons of fuel at a time.  He treats it with 1.25 gallons of our Max Mileage Fuel Borne Catalyst.  His overall fuel mileage average was 6 miles per gallon, once he started using the catalyst it jumped to 7.2 miles per gallon before settling to 6.8 to 7.0 mpg.  He feels it is time to set the valves and injectors.   Why the big jump in miles per gallon with the catalyst that is meant to burn the soot and carbon in the combustion chamber?  It may be the catalyst is having a catalytic effect on the warm fuel while sitting in the tank above ground in the Mississippi heat.  JR also commented that the soot that used to come out of his stacks each morning when he started the engine is now gone, and that is very important to anyone that loves a clean truck.   This Caterpillar has 1,078,000 miles on her and only 1 set of injectors installed at 973,000 miles.  The oil analyst is very clean, running at 12 parts per million on iron, zeros and 1 parts per million on all of the wear metals, and 3 to 4 parts per million on the silicone, which is ingested dirt getting past the air filters.  These oil samples are impeccable, and this NXS caterpillar, with the care that JR gives her will run in excess of 2 million miles!         

Most experienced diesel technicians can use their sense of hearing to diagnose things like a misfire, but do you know a technician who can hear things like minor liner scoring on cylinder 5, a head gasket leak on cylinder 1, or an injector releasing too much fuel in cylinder 3? We have some exciting technology that measures pressure changes to diagnose even the smallest mechanical problems saving technicians hours on disassembly and diagnosis. It’s called the Engine Polygraph and it uses highly sensitive microphones to record soundwaves coming from the oil fill tube and exhaust. It identifies the sounds coming from each individual cylinder and computes a score based on how much extra scraping and rumbling it detects. Certain mechanical problems typically make the same sound no matter what engine. For example, improperly seated piston rings create a high pitched frequency. It combines all the data points and gives you an overall score for your engine health. The scale is from 1-10, the lower the score the better. The engine polygraph is an amazing tool and takes much of the guesswork out of diagnosing an engine. 

We tested this new machine out on a few trucks already. One was a brand new Detroit with a DD15, and we found it was getting blow-by which was likely caused by piston rings that were not properly seated. Another was a 2008 Cummins ISX15 with 500,000 miles and ran particularly well. It didn’t have any major issues so we decided it would be a good candidate to run some Max Mileage FBC in the fuel and see what changed. We took samples at idle and at 30% load. Scores for both idle and load tests showed improvement proving again that Max Mileage allows your engine to run smoother and quieter. One highlight from the test was a 20% improvement for upper cylinder score at idle. There are so many possible uses for this new tool including pre-purchase inspections to find out if you are buying a lemon or not. We will be conducting additional testing at the Pittsburgh Power facility and are anxious to see what we find! 

Don't forget to make it to Pittsburgh Power for The Victory Road Truck Show hosted by us and our neighbors Long Haul Truck Detailing on October 3rd.  You will be able to see the Engine Polygraph in action as well as get your truck on our Dyno for $100 off and great deals on our signature tunes.  We'll see you there!

Written by; Bruce Mallinson &  Andrew Wilson 

Pittsburgh Power Inc.

3600 S. Noah Dr.  Saxonburg, Pa. 16056 

Phone 724-360-4080  Website: