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  #1  
Old 07-02-2005, 12:55 AM
ch11 ch11 is offline
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How do you prep your diesels for prolonged cold/winter weather?

I got some good info from the superduty forum and wanted to solicit info here as well. I'm moving to Maine and want to purchase a diesel soon. When I lived there growing up, I don't remember seeing too many diesel pickups, except for the log trucks. "Diesels don't do well in the cold" is what I remember someone saying a long time ago, and it has stuck in my mind until recently. Point is, I want one and need to know what I need to do different to prepare the truck for the long winter (fluid/lub, additives, starter kits...etc.). Also, any differences in cold weather performance between the 7.3 and the 6.0?

There will often be times that I won't have the truck plugged in prior to starting during -30F to 0 temp range. Should I allow more than 10 minutes for a warm up idle in cold weather? Do I need thinner oil, special glow plugs, diesel additives...etc.

I lhaven't completely ruled out the new V10. It just seems from my limited research, the diesel has the potential to get twice the gas mileage.

Any input here is appreciated - Thanks, Chris
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  #2  
Old 07-02-2005, 01:29 AM
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Block heater, tranny heater, battery heater and even consider a transfer case heater. With those said it looks like you will have times were you cannot plug in? Some of the guys here from Fairbanks hopefully will pipe in on the -30 and not being plugged in. I live in the tropical region so I only see between 0 and 30 during the winter. I would also recommend going synthetic for oils and those 5 greese fittings. Back to the plug in issue. You can get an "Auto Start" that will either start your truck at a preset time or a preset temperature and run for a preset time before shutting down. So in theory you motor will never get cold. Something else to look at.

As for warm up time I usually go outside after getting out of the shower, start up my truck and let it idle while I go back inside to get dressed. Say 10 minutes but it really takes driving it to get it good and warm.

Some other options. Idle control. If you dont have one go to the 6.0 tech folder. ALL diesel have the wiring for the PTO Option. All you have to do is take the two wires and place them on a toggle. Turn on the toggle and wala fast idle. So spend either $5 for a switch or a few hundred for the Idle control. Something I am going to do this winter.

Hope this helps
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Old 07-02-2005, 01:30 AM
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PS I forgot Stydane or Powerservice for each time you fill up. Good safety thing. Gelling up the fuel is a bummer.
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  #4  
Old 07-02-2005, 02:51 PM
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Here's a link to the cold weather thread in the 6.0 Forum tech folder http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=245577

I have the Astro Start system on my truck. I plan on wiring up the truck release circuit (no need on my F-350) to activate my Auxiliary Idle Controller. When's it real cold out, I like to let the engine run for 5 or 10 minutes at a normal idle, then activate the AIC at about 1,700 to 1,800 RPM's. My experience is that the windows will not even defrost at -20F to -30F with 5 or 10 minutes of warm up. Also kind of hard to drive down the road when you cannot see out the windows.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ch11
I lhaven't completely ruled out the new V10. It just seems from my limited research, the diesel has the potential to get twice the gas mileage.

Any input here is appreciated - Thanks, Chris
I own both the 6.0 and a V-10, there's no way you'll get twice the fuel mileage. Maybe 50% more with the diesel.
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  #5  
Old 07-02-2005, 06:40 PM
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Hey TT, you'll have to fill me in on how to do the wiring up of the AIC. I have the Astro Start also. It's the next best thing to Copper River Reds . But seriously I wouldn't mind having the ability to have a high idle on the truck. I understand that there's two wires somewhere under the dash that you can run thru a toggle switch, but if you don't have to go outside..... thanks.
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Old 07-02-2005, 06:52 PM
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Ch11, I read your post in the SD forum. from what I understand you'll have to park your truck for a few weeks at a time with out it running? Some things to consider are will it be way cold for weeks at a time? Is there any chance that someone could be trusted to start your truck maaybe every few days for you if cold weather is a real concern? Also those grill fronts aren't a bad option either. But MLB and TT both have great ideas and suggestions. I am impressed with my "Astro Start" remote vehicle starter. There are plenty of makes out there. Mine will start the truck at pre-programmed temps and run for preset times. Living in SouthCentral Alaska we don't see extremely cold temps for that long of a period. Occasionaly a week straight of below 0 degrees, but never for weeks in a row. Day temps run about 20 or so and I run the same weight oil all year, though I am considering synthetic at my next oil change.
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Old 07-02-2005, 07:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ch11
There will often be times that I won't have the truck plugged in prior to starting during -30F to 0 temp range.
If you cannot plug the truck in at -30 then you really need to switch to Synthetic oil. Regular oil is OK at those temps with a oil pan heater but with no heat the regular oil gets so thick that engine damage may occur at start-up. With synthetic oil the engine will get lubrication even at -60 where the regular oil will not flow.

Newer Diesel engines are not like they were back in the old days. With proper glow plug, glow plug relay and battery maintenance they will start just fine at -60. Back in 1996-1997 my truck would sit for weeks at a time in temperatures ranging from -30 to -60 and with synthetic oil it would fire right up when I needed it. I would not attempt starting a Diesel at any temp colder than about -20 without either synthetic oil or a oil pan heater.
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  #8  
Old 07-02-2005, 07:28 PM
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WilliesSD250,

I haven't wired my AIC to work with my Astro Start yet. Here's my plan: You can program the AIC to engage when the emergency brake is applied and the vehicle is in park. Actually only needs the emergency brake light illuminated, we just apply the emergency brake enough to turn on the light not actually engage the brakes (don't want the pads to freeze to the rotors). I will look at taking the trunk release from the Astro Start to a relay which will fool the AIC to believe the e-brake is applied. Should work, I just have to find the time to wire it up.
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  #9  
Old 07-02-2005, 07:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crumm
If you cannot plug the truck in at -30 then you really need to switch to Synthetic oil. Regular oil is OK at those temps with a oil pan heater but with no heat the regular oil gets so thick that engine damage may occur at start-up. With synthetic oil the engine will get lubrication even at -60 where the regular oil will not flow.
Twice last winter my truck didn't start EVEN when plugged in all night. My truck has the engine block heater, oil pan heater, and battery heaters. It was about -45F to -50F. Even with the block heater and oil pan heater, 15 quarts of oil is difficult to heat at those temperatures. I had conventional dino 10W-30 oil and I think it was too thick. I'm going synthetic this winter. It warmed up to about -40F and the truck started fine. No battery charging or anything, the ambient temperature just warmed up a little.

I also need to check what size (wattage) oil pan heater was installed. It could only be 75 or 100 watt. I wonder how big I can go without cooking the oil?
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  #10  
Old 07-02-2005, 07:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Twin Tritons
Twice last winter my truck didn't start EVEN when plugged in all night.
I don't know much about the 6.0 like you have. Both of mine are 7.3's and they have never failed to start. When at home they are inside but mine sits for 34 hours(plugged in) when at work and the wifes X sits for about 6 hours (unplugged) at work. I am sure if you switched to synthetic it would help a little but normally a no-start situation is more due to glow plug or battery power. Thinner oil is more for engine protection once the engine starts. When you initially crank the engine there could be a block of ice in the pan and the engine would still start but it would not run for long before things started coming out the side of the block. Do the 6.0's normally have a hard time starting in the cold? The 7.3 will start as long as the glow plugs, glow plug relay and the batteries are up to snuff but no engine will run long without proper lubrication.
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  #11  
Old 07-03-2005, 11:16 AM
ch11 ch11 is offline
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Thanks for all the help guys.

Recap:
- Synth. fluids (engine oil / diffs / tranny)
- AIC idle controller or rig switch for idle RPM boost (kinda like a choke?)
- Plug it in when I can
- Remote starter/timer system
- Maintain battery (new one every 2 years or sooner)


I'm going to check out an 02 7.3 CC today, will make sure there is a block heater in it.
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  #12  
Old 07-03-2005, 02:57 PM
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Here is the link for that switch that I was talking about. I also typed it out just in case FTE hides the hyperlink. I didnt get an AIC so this winter I will give this a try.

http://www.dan.prxy.org/Truck/Other/..._idle_mod.html
http semicolon //www dot dan.prxy dot org/Truck/Other/High_Idle/High_idle_mod dot html

You can also check the 6.0 forum - High Idle Mod
http://www.ford-trucks.com/lc/lc.php..._idle_mod.html

One other thing to consider. Done this my self in the interior. A big blue tarp and a camp stove that burns gasoline, propane dosent work that well when its that cold. Worse case you cover the vehicle, start up the stove and go and have a few hours of coffee.
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1999 F350 CC DW 2V V10 - 2000 F350 CC - Flatbed 7.3
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  #13  
Old 07-05-2005, 03:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ch11
Maintain battery (new one every 2 years or sooner)
A new battery is not necessary every two years. I just replaced the batteries in my 96' last fall. The original batteries lasted over 8 years. Batteries last much longer in colder climates than they do in hot climates. Heat is the main thing that kills batteries. You will find that people in Arizona have to replace there batteries twice as often as us folks in Alaska. By proper battery maintenance we are talking about clean terminals, good cables and proper fill level unless you have maintenance free batteries.
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  #14  
Old 07-05-2005, 11:46 PM
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Also do not let a battery get low on voltage and freeze. This will crack the plates and ruin the battery. Two batteries for a diesel truck every two years could get pretty expensive. I had my 1997 F-350 from Oct. of 1996 to June of 2003 and it still had the original battery.
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Old 07-19-2005, 04:08 AM
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Hi Everyone,

I wanted to ask a question along these same lines (cold weather and diesels).

I am new to diesel trucks and I was told that it's "not good" to have a vehicle plugged in for an extended period of time - three or four days. Yet others tell me they've done it for years with no problems. Is this just old school thinking because earlier freeze plugs burned out easier or is this still applicable?

I live in Interior Alaska and sometimes don't use my truck for several days. But I am also an on-call school janitor and if called I need to be able to leave with little notice. So I was hoping I could keep the vehicle plugged in and relatively warm so it will start easier.

Oh BTW I don't pay for electricity so that's not a problem.
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Old 07-19-2005, 04:08 AM
 
 
 
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