We use Diesel as the only fuel on board like many worldwide travellers: MAN 10.224 truck, two Eberspächer Heating Systems D5 (all made 1996) and a Webasto Diesel Cooker X100 (2009). During preparations for Silk Road 2015-2017 we contacted all above manufacturers asking for statements about functioning of their items at altitudes higher than 1.800 m.
MAN replied on the spot saying that operating our 10.224 at those altitudes is no problem, not even at 6.000 m around Himalaya. Power losses may occur, however. Eberspächer and Webasto guaranteed function below 1.800 m. In addition Webasto’s X100 comes with an Altitude-Button guaranteeing for 2.500 m.
Above that altitude Webasto proposed to adjust potentiometers of pump and fan on the way according to CO2 (the actual model enables to activate this manually by software). For altitudes above 2.000 m Eberspächer claimed installation of a by-pass with an altitude-adjusted pump guaranteeing for 4.000 m. The production of this pump, however, had been stopped last year, news for Eberspächer. Consequently it was advised to replace the current heater by a modern Hydronic M10 with automatic altitude adjustment. At our cost.
But the above information is misleading and incorrect, except for MAN. Our MAN had no problems at all up to 3.500 m, in contrast to its drivers no power losses, and no smoke emission. Surprise: Both, cooker and heating worked perfectly, too, even without operating buttons or by-passes. No smoke, no power losses.
What does this tell us? Two out of three manufacturers do not know their own product performance never testing any of it, faulty informations and instructions being forwarded instead. Extremely unprofessional, annoying and far from a glorious chapter of high class workmanship except MAN: Volkswagen corporate but highly professional…