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Hard/sluggish starts in '96

  #1  
Old 09-12-2018, 07:20 PM
zerker6
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Hard/sluggish starts in '96

So over the last 2 weeks I've been having issues with my 96 7.3 and I'm through some trouble shooting and looking into next steps.

First problem was no starts while in park, found that my neutral safety switch wasn't registering it in park essentially hence no starts. Readjusted and bolted it back on after doing electric checks across my starter solenoid on the frame (which I had replaced first during the no start issues before working on the neutral safety, as well as 2 new batteries.) make sure starter was getting power. Did resistance test on the neutral as well seemed fine there.

Started cranking and it rolled over but it was quite a long crank and a reluctant turn over. And still having some issues with starting in park now, almost died out on its crank and wasn't getting as much power as my buddy and I would like. I think it was around the 9v mark. He was saying something about a high resistance fault possibly of some sort and maybe running new wire for it if broken wire exists. Anyway it Starts better in neutral than park but that's still a longer crank with a sluggish turn. I think I'm just gonna replace the neutral safety anyways.

my truck had been having rougher starts now that temps are getting lower already, about 38-55 in mornings I'm in high desert in UT, daytime is warm and usually nothing to bad then when starting I think my next step is glow plugs, or their relay for my rough starting; I get the white puff of smoke on my first start of the day.

any other input from folks would be appreciated I'm still new to diesel maintenance and my mechanic friend is a gasser guy so I'm trying to help him and I gain better understanding.

'96 7.3 psd
E40d auto trans
200k miles
bought at 190k and working through things as they come up.
 

Last edited by zerker6; 09-12-2018 at 07:22 PM. Reason: Adding additional information
  #2  
Old 09-12-2018, 08:37 PM
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First thing I would do is make sure the glow plug system is in good working order.
 
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Old 09-12-2018, 08:48 PM
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Have you checked your starter? They get tired over time, and you don't realize how slow they are cranking. These engines need to spin over fast for a good start. Also check the cables to see if they are in good condition, and the connections are clean and tight, both positive and negative.
 
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Old 09-12-2018, 09:36 PM
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If you tested voltage Rite after the truck started then voltage will be low as the glow plugs continue to draw for up to two minutes.


Id start with test the GP system and making sure all battery and starter confections are clean and tight.
 
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Old 09-13-2018, 12:50 AM
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I will take all of this into considerations and update asap thanks for the info.
 
  #6  
Old 09-13-2018, 12:54 AM
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Originally Posted by farmert View Post
Have you checked your starter? They get tired over time, and you don't realize how slow they are cranking. These engines need to spin over fast for a good start. Also check the cables to see if they are in good condition, and the connections are clean and tight, both positive and negative.
hadn't pulled the starter yet it is definitely on my radar but will pull it and test it soon.
cables seem to be in good shape I cleaned and put new batteries in so it should have a solid connection.
 
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Old 09-13-2018, 12:57 AM
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Originally Posted by fordpride View Post
If you tested voltage Rite after the truck started then voltage will be low as the glow plugs continue to draw for up to two minutes.


Id start with test the GP system and making sure all battery and starter confections are clean and tight.
didn't know that about the plugs drawing after. I will look more into the GP system and how to do the checks on it
 
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Old 09-13-2018, 05:59 AM
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Don’t waste your time having the starter tested at a parts store. Your truck is doing the same test that the part stores can do.
The parts store text only check to see if it engages and spins. It does not load test the starter. The only way to test it woul be to do an amp draw while still in the truck.
 
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Old 09-13-2018, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by fordpride View Post
The only way to test it woul be to do an amp draw while still in the truck.
I was gonna pull it and do a jumper cable test on it with one of my other batteries that I pulled from the truck that are okay now after I fully charged them.
 
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Old 09-13-2018, 08:22 AM
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Try my hit list on the cables, mine was spinning slow before
https://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/1...ou-cranky.html

Sounds like your GPR is going but mine did similar and it was dirty battery contact on it. Has been ok since cleaning it and I have a spare GPR now.

Ohm out each GP and they should be about 1 ohm or pull the two wires on GPR that go to GPs and check each one for .250 ohm to ground . Any higher and you have a bad one. use only ZD11 as they don't swell when they go bad
 
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by zerker6 View Post
I was gonna pull it and do a jumper cable test on it with one of my other batteries that I pulled from the truck that are okay now after I fully charged them.
all that will do it tell you that it engages and spins.
 
  #12  
Old 09-21-2018, 07:20 PM
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So I haven't tested any of my GP stuff yet but I willed her into starting today (had to get to work and lost use of work truck for it needs some brake work done) it was cold this morning (30 degrees) she was plugged it but it took like 4 cycles of the key and some accelerator mashing to get it moving (idled for about 20 mins before I left) drove the 20 miles to work. Went to start it after work and no starting. Weak sounding cranking that leads to no cranking and just slow cranks to nothing just kinda stops after its tried for a second or two.
Almost feels like my battery is draining (two brand new ones I'll go through and check all of my battery wires and connections clean em up real good,) or not charging I dunno my buddy hooked up with his 2500 Silverado and tried jumping it and that didn't do much. it sounded like it was trying to turn over but then would die out. Only like a half second of cranking almost and then sounds like its straining then no movement or anything.

Ordering a new GPR the Stancor one just to get that out and a neutral safety switch should have those by Monday. I'm starting to think maybe my alternator might not be charging my batteries but I've not had a starting issue like this before nor dealt with GP issues. Just dropped a few thousand on dental so of course this **** hits now
 
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Old 09-21-2018, 10:11 PM
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Weak starter?
 
  #14  
Old 09-22-2018, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by oldbird1965 View Post
Weak starter?
that is my next step after I replace the gpr and neutral safety switch. I'll have those two parts by Tuesday and hopefully install them Wednesday and if that doesn't do it I'll replace the starter and then if that's not it I'll end up replacing the actual GPs just not looking forward to that part of it if it comes to it.
 
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Old 09-22-2018, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by fordpride View Post
If you tested voltage Rite after the truck started then voltage will be low as the glow plugs continue to draw for up to two minutes.


Id start with test the GP system and making sure all battery and starter confections are clean and tight.
Mike, What component tells the glow plugs to draw after start? GPR or PCM??
 

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