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Glow Plug Issue

 
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Old 12-20-2018, 08:54 PM
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Glow Plug Issue

This is my first post here, so I am going to get right into it. I've done tons of research on glow plugs for my Dad's new to him 1986 F250 with a 6.9 IDI. It needs new plugs. The previous owner installed a switch to bypass the factory controller, which I found out is a common upgrade. When I hold the plug for 8 seconds or so, I hear the solenoid click, and power is sent to the plugs, however, it will not start (Wisconsin Winter). It is not a compression or tune issue, because when it is plugged in for a few hours, it starts like its 90 out. So I ordered a set of Motorcraft plugs to replace them, because I read that they are the best, and to avoid Autolites because they can swell and get stuck.
Well, I go to remove the old ones and they are all stuck. I was able to remove two plugs, the others would unthread (not easily) but they would not come all the way out. Of course, both of the plugs are Autolites, and have visible swelling. So instead of wasting 20 bucks and installing 2 new ones, I put the old ones back in, and returned the new set. I also left them all unplugged.
Being Winter, I don't want to pull the heads off. So I am looking for alternatives. Any advise would be appreciated. According to my research, there are two systems I could use. Ether injection, or manifold heaters.
Currently I have the block heater on a timer so it comes on for 5 hours before work, and the truck starts great. But, after sitting at work all day unplugged, it doesn't like to start without ether. I have started it without ether with the temperature in the 20's, but it takes a solid minute of cranking, which is too much for the starter. So, I use ether and it fires up perfectly, but it is a pain in the butt to pop the hood and unscrew the air cleaner. It isn't that bad for me, but it is my Dad's truck, and he is not getting any younger, so I am looking for something easier.
 
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Old 12-21-2018, 12:03 PM
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welcome to FTE..
your only choice for the present time is ether or the block heater, intake air heaters do not work very well on these engines.
once it gets warm and you can work under the hood without your fingers freezing and falling off, i have found that penetrating oil and a variable speed cordless drill work wonders for removing those craptastic autocrap glow plugs.
loosen the glow plug, and give the hole area a good spray with penetrating oil. then chuck the glow plug into the cordless drill and gently pull up and push down on the plug while slowly spinning it.
it takes time and patience, but the pull/push/spin while also spraying with oil will cut the crap built up off the tip of the glow plug so you can remove it.
once you get them all out you can then put the proper ZD-1 plugs in.
the other option is to remove the heads, break the tips off the plugs, and then pull the rest out of the threaded hole.
 
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Old 12-21-2018, 12:11 PM
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Thanks for the reply. I guess I'll be sticking with ether for a while, until I can yank the heads. I've heard about using a drill to get the plugs out, but I believe my problem is not carbon build up, I think the plugs have just swelled that much. The two I was able to get out had no sign of carbon on them, which I thought was strange, they were just very swelled.
With regards to using ether, is it best to spray it into the intake while the engine is turning over? Obviously this is difficult to do alone, but if it's a lot better for the motor then I'd consider a push button starter switch under the hood. Eventually if I don't pull the heads, I'd like an ether system, like on old tractors.
 
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Old 12-21-2018, 12:29 PM
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when i use it, i usually give the air intake tube a one or two second spritz and then rush in to turn the key while holding throttle about 1/2 way. .
usually only have to do it one time.
the drill trick will work just as well with swelled tips. it just takes a little longer than carbon fouled tips.
 
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Old 12-21-2018, 01:56 PM
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Good to know. I'll try the drill trick once the weather is better so worst case I can pull the heads easily.
 
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Old 12-21-2018, 11:50 PM
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Just a thought, If you have one of those Honda Inverter generators, mount it in the bed, plug it into
your block heater and it should start right up after a couple hrs of running.. Those generators are super
quite. You might need the 2000 watt one. The block heater draws 1000 wats.


Charlie
 
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Old 12-22-2018, 12:50 AM
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What I did was use about a dozen spray can straws.

I hooked them together with heat shrink tubing and then slid them out a bit and applied super glue. Then another layer of HS tubing on top of each joint..

There are many different starter fluid depresser stem types, and some don't even have the provision for a straw.

So go to Walmart, and find a good nozzle off something else, ie brake parts cleaner, that also fits the stem of your chosen brand of ether.

Simply drill a tiny hole in the breather body, and run your 'extension cord' straw hose through the same grommet as the electrical in the firewall.

Use a zip tie to secure it to the hat. And tuck the other end under the dash. Cold start, simply reach out the hose and keep a can of ether in the cab.

3 small shots for deep cold, 2 for mild cold, 1 for mild or warm weather. Wait 5 seconds for the ether to dissipate all into the hat and cold air 'remove for fording' tube, so she breathes it gently instead of huffing it all at once.

You may not even want to use the plugs after ether, it's the driver, not the truck that gets 'hooked on' ether ..
 
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Old 12-22-2018, 01:36 AM
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Figured I'd chime in since I'm using an ether start kit and also love it! I'll never go back to gkowplugs. I've had horrible luck with them lasting using beru brand but mine takes zd-1's as does your truck. Zd-9's seem to last longer but also don't warn up as quick.

I pulled a used kit of a 70's john deere tractor. It's not just the canister with the solenoid but it also has a jet to vaporize it really well and I have it running in pre air filter and all it takes is a bump of the push button as quick as you can hit it! You have to hold the throttle down a third or so and let it run for a few seconds or it will die since I don't have glow plugs after glowing to keep the engine running. I run the name brand deere ether as it's the same price as the knock off stuff locally and has 80% ether. There short cans though but last anywhere from 4-6 months. Price wise it's like buying a set of glow plugs every five years which I've never had a set last longer than six months. Tried em set up manually on a push button and still no luck. Would only take a 4-7 second glow depending on outside temps.

There are plenty of companies that offer ether kits but I got mine next to nothing and it does the job. I can also get the replacement cans locally vs ordering online and having to wait. My main advice is always carry a spare can! Without it you WILL BE STRANDED AND ITS NOT FUN trying to call everyone you know to bring you a can.

I like leroys idea of a diy system, even some small vacuum line would do the trick!

Ethers not dangerous idiots are,
 
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Old 12-22-2018, 12:28 PM
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I ordered the Kat's 33102 kit from a local NAPA. It will come in a few days and I'll let you know how it installs. I like the diy idea, but I want something with a push button that other people could drive if need be. The generator idea crossed my mind, but it still takes a few hours of running, plug honda generators are ridiculously expensive. Hopefully with this system it will be all good. The ether cylinders are not cheap, so I hope that they last a while.
 
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Old 12-22-2018, 10:27 PM
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You are right the Honda`s are expensive for sure. I have seen some used one`s on CL for less, but then it is
a crap shoot buying used. Some times a guy has had one for years and not used it and just wants it gone.

I have used the HF Heat gun down the intake for a few minutes, then cranked her over and she starts right up.
Our winters here in Carson City are no where as cold as back east that you guys get. But in the teens and 20`s
and it works.

Just be sure to remove the air filter element or you will have more heat than you need. I flamed the dang thing
one morning when I forgot to remove it. That will get you moving quickly.

Charlie
 
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Old 12-23-2018, 03:20 PM
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I put the pull cable kats kit in my a few days ago works good. Pull **** crank release **** starts. Wont let any ether out till you release. Comes with two injectors 200 too 499 cid and 500 and up. Easy to install as well i have my batterys moved and I pulled the drover side battery box mounted it thier.



 
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Old 01-31-2019, 05:35 PM
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Glow Plug Issue

Hi Guys,
Similar issue, similar conclusion; I'm tired of messing with glow plugs, relays, controllers and decades-old wiring. I see a trip to NAPA for a Kat's Kit in my future. Anyone care to share why you chose the cable pull kit instead of the 12v kit?
Thanks,
John
 
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Old 01-31-2019, 10:15 PM
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Originally Posted by johnboy44 View Post
Hi Guys,
Similar issue, similar conclusion; I'm tired of messing with glow plugs, relays, controllers and decades-old wiring. I see a trip to NAPA for a Kat's Kit in my future. Anyone care to share why you chose the cable pull kit instead of the 12v kit?
Thanks,
John
Money 1/3 of the cost of an electric kit. Works just fine.
 
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Old 02-01-2019, 07:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Charmalu View Post
I have used the HF Heat gun down the intake for a few minutes, then cranked her over and she starts right up.
That's a great idea!

For those of you having difficulty starting your truck after work just ask if you can use an extension cord to plug in the block heater. Of course, it all depends on where you work but a good percentage of us probably have the option to plug in cell phones at work, or at least have co-workers in the office that do. I've done this a few times at work and nobody had a problem with it. Of course, I cleared it with my supervisor first.
 
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Old 02-01-2019, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by johnboy44 View Post
Hi Guys,
Similar issue, similar conclusion; I'm tired of messing with glow plugs, relays, controllers and decades-old wiring. I see a trip to NAPA for a Kat's Kit in my future. Anyone care to share why you chose the cable pull kit instead of the 12v kit?
Thanks,
John
johnboy44,
I have yet to purchase the setup because money is tight, but I had planned on using the 12v setup and trying it in with ignition key, so it will inject it at the same time it is turning over. I believe this will work because it's a metered spray and doesn't matter how long you hold the button. I also would have a separate button for the super cold, and a switch to shut it off, along with the temperature sensor.

Currently, I use a rattle can of ether, but I'm only one person so I can't have it cranking while I spray, and I don't like how terribly shakey it is when it starts if you let the ether sit.

Those are my two cents.
 

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