The Defender TDCi fuel cooler placement on the inner passenger side of the chassis, while from an engineering and purpose point of view it’s in a good spot for air flow and doing what its designed to do.
But… it does seem more prone to getting damaged and or the fuel lines attached to it by branches, logs etc etc. I have heard of people removing the fuel cooler to fix the issue of getting damaged, quite simply this is a bad idea.
The fuel cooler, its purpose/reasons on any common rail diesel is (in the most basic explanation):
*Diesel engine power will be typically measured at fuel temperatures of 50 C (deg C), the higher the diesel fuel temp, the less density it has, less density, less power.
*A typical common rail diesel on the high pressure side of the fuel system will be around 30,000psi, high operating pressures cause excessive heated diesel.
*Diesel fuel is also used to cool (and lubricate) fuel system components, so the fuel also acts as a heat sink (heat exchange).
*Most common rail fuel systems have a high volume of fuel going through the fuel circuit, aprox 80% of fuel delivered to the engine goes back to the tank via the return line.
*The fuel cooler (heat exchanger) is what removes excess heat from the return diesel fuel, airflow also aids heat dispersion.
*The coolant lines connected to the fuel cooler, or rather the “Heat exchanger” are not at that coolant temperature of 80 – 90 deg C, but (like a lot of the cooling system) are typically round 50 deg C.
*The coolant removes excess heat from the heat exchanger.
*The cooled return diesel fuel can be round 40 deg C.
*The cooled return diesel fuel temperature will be closer to that of the fuel in the tank.
*The less differential between return diesel fuel and whats in the tank reduces the possibility of condensation.
*Cooler diesel fuel improves efficiency in combustion and reduces emissions.
*Cooler fuel in the tank reduces overall tank temperatures, with reduced radiated heat through the body.
The simple fix is fit a fuel cooler guard manufactured by APT Fabrications. There is a link over on my webpage under the Contact Us (or in this case, them…)