Diesel Engine Serial Numbers for Agriculture Engines John Deere, Caterpillar & Cummins

Farming equipment and machines breakdown at times, just like diesels on the highway. They're exposed to harsh environments and long hours of operation. 

When a tractor or combine goes down, it's critical for farmers to get the parts they need to get back up and running fast.

Whether you're running Caterpillar, John Deere, or Cummins equipment having your engine serial number ready when ordering parts from us can save you tons of time!

Here are some tips to help you locate your ESN on your Caterpillar, John Deere, or Cummins diesel engine.

You can also check out our video for more information: 




Looking for parts for your diesel engine? Our ASE Certified Technicians can help!

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Location of Your Engine Serial Number

Finding your ESN can vary from engine type to engine type, so we're breaking it down for you:


caterpillar esn location | Highway & Heavy Parts


When locating a Caterpillar engine serial number, most can be found on the data plate, which is typically on the fuel pump side on the block, or the valve cover. Caterpillar is pretty regular with their location. 

Want to know more about Caterpillar ESNs? Check out our article dedicated to info on Caterpillar engine serial numbers


john deere esn location | Highway & Heavy Parts


For John Deere engines, you can locate your ESN on a plate on your engine. This tag is most frequently found attached to one side of the engine or another. In some situations, you might also want to have your casting numbers, which are on the engine block itself, and the connecting rods. 


cummins esn location | Highway & Heavy Parts


Cummins engines will have the engine serial number on the data plate. The data plate on an engine can be a great reference because it will often include additional information such as CPL, horsepower, and RPM rating. However, the data plate can be hard to find, as it will be in different locations based on the model of the engine. The location of the data plate for your engine will be in your owner's manual. 


The Format of Your ESN

Understanding the format of your ESN is important in order to locate the correct number printed on the engine.

All Caterpillar ESNs have a similar format, which makes them pretty easy to identify. They all begin with a three number and letter prefix, which is then followed by 7 digits.

John Deere serial numbers are typically 13 or 17 characters long. The first two letters indicate which factory the engine was produced in.  The next four digits are for the engine model, followed by a letter for the emission code.  For an older engine, this letter will stand for the aspiration code, while newer engines use this letter to indicate their emission certification. The last six digits indicate your serial number sequence.

Need more information on your Deere? We have an article on John Deere ESNs.

Cummins engine serial numbers look more like a classic serial number. They are eight digits long. Very old engines could have six digits, but we don't see this very often any more. They are composed of only numbers. Your Cummins ESN will go in a numerical sequence based on which engine first came off of the assembly line.  There is no special designation for particular models. 

You can find out even more about your Cummins by reading our article on Cummins ESNs


Why It's Important to Know Your ESN

We know that finding and identifying your ESN can be a hassle, but knowing your ESN can be crucial when ordering parts for your diesel engine. Giving us part numbers will usually work if you are looking for a single part or two, but we absolutely need an ESN if you are looking for any kind of rebuild kit. If we know an ESN, we can look up all of the exact parts that your engine was built with, and know that we're getting you the right stuff.

Another way to find an engine serial number if the tag is missing, is electronically.  Modern engines have computers (ECM) modules.  If you have the necessary equipment you can connect to the ECM and retrieve the engine serial number.  Remember to always be careful with engine numbers off valve covers and ECMs.  If those parts were taken from a different engine it may provide you with an incorrect ESN. 

Last but not least, remember that just because you have an ESN it doesn’t mean the configuration of the engine has not been altered in a previous repair.  When working on an engine it is a good practice to check the part numbers that come out of the engine, like your bearings for different sizes, and liners for sizes and configurations.  


If you have questions about your engine serial number, we're here to help!


Do you need a rebuild kit or other replacement part for your agricultural diesel application? Our ASE Certified Technicians can help you get the right parts the first time! Give us a call at 844-304-7688, or request a quote online

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