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Old 03-10-2008, 07:48 PM
molsen7 molsen7 is offline
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Starting trouble

I have a 1997 diesel F350 manual. I thought I had a glow plug issue but the local dealer said they were fine. They went through a lot and finally said they had to replace all the fuel injectors - which they did (and it cost me $3500). I still can't cold start my truck without plugging in. Any ideas what could be causing this? It simply turns over and over and over and after about 15-20 minutes it might start (just before the battery dies).
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Old 03-10-2008, 08:32 PM
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Your glow plugs/ glow plug controllers are not working. Since it starts fine when plugged in, that rules out your high pressure oil pump draining.

How long does your wait to start like stay on for? If the glowplugs do turn out to be the problem, I would talk to your dealer about the $3500 you just spent on injectors.
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Old 03-11-2008, 12:29 AM
molsen7 molsen7 is offline
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It depends on how cold it is. When it is in the single digits the light stays on for some time. When it is in the 30's the light stays on for half the time (and so on).
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Old 03-11-2008, 07:02 AM
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Are you just trying to start it or waiting until the glow plugs have time to produce sufficient heat for the combustion process?..You should have a light that lets you know when to try and start.

Remember that diesels work on the heat generated from highly compressed air vs having a spark plug. Glow plugs are simply an aid to the process, and it takes longer when it is cold.

Check battery amps

As a Note:
In some cars, including all older cars, it is possible to attempt to start the engine (crank it over) while the glowplugs are switched on (relays in many modern cars prevent this). The heat caused by the engine's combustion, when combined with the heat from being electrified, is destructive to the glowplugs; the overheating can easily cause them to burn out. Thus, it is important to wait for the "wait to start" light to go out before cranking the engine.

Glowplugs have a limited lifespan. Certain factors, such as the aforementioned overheating, can greatly shorten that lifespan. The amount of heat which a glowplug produces diminishes over time; this causes the engine to become progressively harder to start in cold weather.

The tech forums would be your best bet for more details. You could also post in the 'Diesel Thread' in WAFTE...We have some pretty knowledgeable people with diesels.
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Old 03-11-2008, 10:03 AM
molsen7 molsen7 is offline
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Yes, I always wait until the glow plugs are out and my batteries are strong. I will try the diesel thread as well. Thanks for your input.
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Old 03-27-2009, 04:36 AM
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some of those 7.3s i believe have a cam sensor problem and maybe a recal . my bro's 01 hade it replaced but are still pigs to start w/out plugging in.NEVER USE STARTING FLUID!!! i wander if the glow plugs ever just need cleaning, or can be?
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