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6.9/7.3 IDI Diesel tech info

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Old 01-13-2011, 04:10 PM
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6.9/7.3 IDI Diesel tech info

I wanted to help out all the new diesel owners with keeping there truck in tip-top running condition. Some day, I hope this becomes a sticky so there will be less "my truck won't start", "my truck has low power" kinda thread's.

Engine basics and regular maintenance items:

- Oil capacity is 10 quarts with filter. If the PowerStroke 7.3 oil filter (FL-1995) is used, capacity goes up to 11 quarts total. 15W40 is the recommended oil (anything similar is fine, just needs to be "Heavy Duty" or rated for diesel's).

- Coolant capacity is 8 gallons. It's HIGHLY suggested you use a ELC (extended life coolant) since it has the proper SCA additives already added. For the other 4 gallons, distilled water is recommended. If the thermostat needs to be replaced, DO NOT use a run-of-the-mill part's store one. It will make the engine run colder, these diesel's like to run on the hotter side (helps completely burn the fuel also). The correct motorcraft part number is E5TZ-8575-C. The only other place to buy a replacement thermostat would be directly from a International dealer.

If your a new owner to one of these trucks, read this:

Cavitation Article

Cavitation is the "achilles' heel" of the 6.9/7.3 International diesel engine. If a proper SCA level is NOT kept in the engine, the engine may fail.

- The correct Glow plugs to use in these engine's is Motorcraft's ZD-1A (for the 86 and older engines) and ZD-9 (for 87 and newer IDI engines). These plugs are the ONLY ones that will reliably start your engine and provide a trouble-free removal.

- The CDR valve is very similar to a PCV valve on gas engine vehicles. It stands for Crankcase Depression Regulator. It's purpose is to recycle the exhaust gases that manage to get past the piston rings and into the crankcase. If you're using a quart of oil every 1K miles you might want to take a look at the CDR valve.

It's very simple to remove (2 bolts) and should be cleaned every other oil change. If it comes time to actually change it, the Ford part number is E3TZ-6A665-A. The International part number is 1805319C1. If you happen to just need the rubber tube on the CDR (the "retainer") that part number is E8TZ 6A892A.


Troubleshooting a broken truck:

Truck won't start:
A diesel truck only needs 3 things to run. Fuel, compression and air.

Most of the time the trucks have "air intrusion" (air leaks) in the return fuel lines. The air replaces the fuel and the lines become empty. So next time you got to start your truck, you have to work the mechanical fuel pump (by cranking the engine a while) to bring the fuel from the tank to the front of the truck. "Return line kit's" can be had almost anywhere online. You must buy quality pieces to avoid future problems. You can also replace the mechanical fuel pump with a electrical fuel pump to avoid extensive cranking.

Truck stalls when going around turns or dies near a 1/4 tank of fuel:

Ford didn't think this one all the way though, but that's ok. It's a pretty easy fix. You have two options, both involve either removing the bed or dropping the fuel tank.

Option 1 is when the tank sending unit/pickup is out of the tank all you have to do is slip some fuel rated line onto the end of the pickup where it's broken and cut a "V" into the end that would be sucking so it can't get stuck onto the bottom/side of the tank.

Option 2 is just replace the pickup. The Ford part number is E5TZ-9J306-BA.

Charging and starter condition:

Special note should be towards battery/starter/starter cable health. These motor's are high compression and require A LOT of cranking amps to turn the engine over. In sub freezing temp you must have a two (MATCHING) high CCA battery's, a good starter, and the cables must have good clean ends and the cables themselves must be free of any cracks or breaks.




Over time this post will be updated. So please feel free to post any and all info concerning the operation of the International IDI 6.9/7.3 Diesel engine.

-Mike
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Old 01-13-2011, 05:39 PM
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i like it Mike.lets's get ya some more FAQ stuff.

for starting; and heat.
diesel fuel requires a temp of ....... to ignite.
sorry that's all i got off memory lol.

trucks (most common with the older 80's models due to age it appears) with a stall/no start run condition around 1/4 tank ......you know the rest.

engine starts,then stalls shortly after;
air intrusion.
remove the fuel filter to inspect its level.
you can expand.


there's a couple more rough drafts ideas.
i'll keep thinking about more common things too and add 'em.

coolant/normal operating temp.proper t-stat info would be good to grab too.

this is gonna be a big thread.

helpful sources to grab info from:
http://www.oilburners.net/articles/cavitationartic.html
http://www.oilburners.net/wiki/tiki-...hp?articleId=7
http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/96...ml#post9727257
http://www.intellidog.com/dieselmann/idi.htm
http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/39...mp-timing.html

your in for a whopper.
but it would be the ultimate FAQ ever if you take your time,and cover all the popular stuff.
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Old 01-13-2011, 06:10 PM
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Property Diesel Fuel No. 1 Diesel Fuel No. 2
Autoignition Temperature (°C) 177-329 254-285
Autoignition Temperature (°F ) 351-624 486- 545
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Old 01-13-2011, 08:32 PM
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Thermostat is a part you should only get from Ford or International.
The ones from the typical parts stores are designed differently, only use an IH or Ford part.
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Old 01-13-2011, 08:37 PM
81Bronk36 81Bronk36 is offline
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2 things I know as fact in the 1 1/2 years I have owned my IDI....Always replace your head bolts when swapping head gaskets and if you can see your fan and not a round blur as you crank your engine, its not gonna start, load test your batteries and replace as necessary.
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Old 01-13-2011, 08:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 81Bronk36 View Post
2 things I know as fact in the 1 1/2 years I have owned my IDI....Always replace your head bolts when swapping head gaskets and if you can see your fan and not a round blur as you crank your engine, its not gonna start, load test your batteries and replace as necessary.
If you're seeing the fan, that's another way to say the engine isn't turning over fast enough. If the engine is not turning over fast enough, it will not start. And as you said, charge the batteries or replace.

For the head bolts, I re-used my originals. Yes, they stretch over time, but for the price of replacing all the head bolts, you may consider going with ARP head studs. They'll keep your heads and gaskets where they're supposed to be, and leave your motor 100% ready to bolt a turbo on and run over 10 psi of boost.
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Old 01-13-2011, 08:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FORDF250HDXLT View Post
trucks (most common with the older 80's models due to age it appears) with a stall/no start run condition around 1/4 tank ......you know the rest.
This is common, the pickup tube off the fuel sending unit is made of rubber and disintegrates over time and the bottom rots off and falls to the bottom of the tank...the whole tube doesn't fall off, just enough that the truck will run out of fuel at 1/4 tank.
The fix: Cut a length of fuel hose that will fit over the pickup tube on the sending unit. Make sure the hose will reach the bottom of the tank. Not too long that it will turn back up like a J though, try to have it sit right at the bottom. Also, the end of the hose into a V so it won't suck itself to the bottom of the tank.
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Old 01-13-2011, 08:57 PM
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if your having alignment problems check the spring and shackle bushings.... replace with 2 piece poly bushings if available... if the ones in there are factory be prepared with a torch/ air hammer for the rear spring bolts the front spring bolt and shackle bolt shouldn't put up to much of a fight

also the 1 piece fuel filter replacement for the 7.3L can be found at oreilly/kragen
WIX 33617 - Fuel/Water Separator | O'Reilly Auto Parts

also SCA's are important to engine life..... prevent cavitation
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Old 01-13-2011, 09:01 PM
81Bronk36 81Bronk36 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueOvalBud View Post
If you're seeing the fan, that's another way to say the engine isn't turning over fast enough. If the engine is not turning over fast enough, it will not start. And as you said, charge the batteries or replace.

For the head bolts, I re-used my originals. Yes, they stretch over time, but for the price of replacing all the head bolts, you may consider going with ARP head studs. They'll keep your heads and gaskets where they're supposed to be, and leave your motor 100% ready to bolt a turbo on and run over 10 psi of boost.
Yes, it was a simple thing I noticed when I replaced my batteries and the truck fired right up afterwards.

One of the PO's used the same headbolts in one side and that was the side that blew between the cylinders and they corroded and stuck in the head I had to beat 2 of them out with a punch and a 5lb hammer after I lifted the head off (spent 3 hours spinning the bolts with a breaker bar before thinking maybe they were spun out far enough)
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Old 01-13-2011, 11:18 PM
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All good info guys! I'll be adding it together once I get a chance to sit down and organize it.
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Old 01-14-2011, 11:18 PM
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Updated. Trying to get all the correct part numbers.
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Old 01-15-2011, 12:13 AM
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t-stats.
to the best of my knowledge through research:
Motorcraft E5TZ-8575-C = 192* fully open = 212* (best for fuel economy and performance.)
Navistar 1807974C94 = 180* fully open = 200* (best for running cooler should you find the need for your application.)
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Old 01-29-2013, 10:09 AM
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Thanks ManicMike,now this was a very good read,The cavitation article was very good stuff to know also.
This should be at the top so all of us new owners can read before plugging up the threads with the basics of these engines.
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Old 01-29-2013, 07:21 PM
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im coming off mobil 1 5w 40 and going to amsoil 5w 30 series 3000 due to increased fuel prices.
navistar says 30w is ok for this engine for temps below 32F but ok up to 90F
(which is pretty much all but a couple months out of the year here in Maine.at which time i can run some 40w dino for July and August.)
i will be sticking with mobil 1 synthetic filter (extended change duration) for the psd.#m1-601
(though amsoil has synthetic filters as well.)
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Old 01-29-2013, 09:21 PM
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Just some random thoughts, but how about linking to the glow plug stickies, making this FAQ a one stop sticky?


Glow plugs, 83 thru 86, old style

Glow plugs, 87 thru 94, new style system


Here is a good thread on the CDR with pics: What is a CDR?


Maybe mention the soup bowl mod?

How about some part numbers for the Single Mass Flywheel & clutch?

Not necessarily diesel related, but maybe throw in the firewall weakness around the slave cylinder and the repair. And the bleeding of the slave cylinder seems to come up quite often.

Last edited by Chevy_Eater; 01-30-2013 at 09:15 PM. Reason: Info added
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