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Glow plugs, 83 thru 86, old style

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Old 10-13-2009, 08:45 PM
86fordf250 86fordf250 is offline
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Glow plugs, 83 thru 86, old style

Hi on my 86 6.9L when I turn the key on the wait to start light doesnt come on and I do not hear clicking. Does anyone know what this could be?? Any help appreciated!

Also what brand of glowplugs should I be cautious of?? Thanks
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Old 10-13-2009, 09:12 PM
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The 86 system is a bit different.

You probably need a glow plug controller or the relay is dead.

This is the controller.



It screws down into the coolant jacket at the rear of the drivers side head standing straight up and down.

This is the glow plug relay.



Mounted right behind the passenger side battery down on the inner fender well.
To test the relay, remove the purple wire on the small terminal and jump 12 volt power to that terminal.

When you do, you should hear the relay click and have power on the large terminal that has the two large orange wires on it.
The small black wire under the orange wires in the picture goes to the wait to start light in the dash.
The old style system does not sense burnt out glow plugs like the new system does, so you need to check them.

Motorcraft/Beru ZD1A is the only glow plug you should use.
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Old 10-14-2009, 07:52 PM
86fordf250 86fordf250 is offline
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86 f250 6.9L glowplugs

Thanks for the quick response I was looking at it closely today (been sitting outside for months and had mouse nest on back of engine so I cleaned it up and let it dry) and found that someone did a poor job of putting a pushbutton for the glowplugs. I found several wires unhooked at the rear of the engine and found the plug that goes over the top of the controller up by the air-cleaner! Gonna mess with it again tomarrow so ill let you know how it goes. Thanks again
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:36 AM
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When you look at the wires unhooked for the controller, be aware that it is common for the controller to fail and turn the glow plug on.

So if you plug it back in, the glow plugs may come on as soon as you turn the key on and stay on until they burn up.

I am also aware many people try to hot wire the glow plugs direct.
Since the glow plugs draw 200 amps when heating you must use the relay when converting to manual control or you risk an electrical fire.

Best way to convert the old style system is find a power source (fuse panel) that is only hot when the key is on.
Run a wire from the source to a momentary switch, then come off the other terminal of the switch with a wire that gets run out to the relay and connected to the purple wire terminal.

Then to operate, turn the key to on, hold the momentary switch for up to 10 seconds, then start the engine.

When the temps are extremely cold, after starting the engine may stumble, a short afterglow of glow plugs will smooth it out and keep it from stalling.
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Old 10-15-2009, 04:59 PM
86fordf250 86fordf250 is offline
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I plan on putting things back to factory and taking the manual switch that the last owner installed off. Thanks again
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:25 PM
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Watch the glow plug light.
If it comes on while driving your glow plugs are short for this world.

Since the glow plug controller has been in the head for 23 years, many break off when you are trying to remove them.

If it does break off, head comes off to get the remnants out of the head before you drive the truck again since it screws into the coolant jacket.

Mine was removed when the engine was out for rebuilding and a pipe plug now resides in it's location.
Not a big deal for me, I am the only one that drives my truck and I have been around manual glow plugs since the 60's.
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Old 10-18-2009, 10:07 AM
86fordf250 86fordf250 is offline
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Ok ive been looking for the controller but I cant locate it. Do you have a diagram or pic of where its located. If the plug wasnt off of it I probably could have found it.
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Old 10-18-2009, 12:22 PM
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Drivers side head, back at the fire wall there is a port in the head facing straight up.
That is where the controller should be located.
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Old 10-23-2009, 07:59 PM
86fordf250 86fordf250 is offline
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Hi havent had much time to mess with it but I still cannot locate it probably going to have the local technical school use it to let the kids learn how to replace the controller. No labor charges, parts only!! Im going to mess with it for another week or 2 since they cant get it in yet so ill let you know how things go. thanks
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Old 11-26-2009, 09:57 AM
16Vjohn 16Vjohn is offline
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I do have a question about my glow plugs... the previous owner wired in a momentary switch because the controller died. He said that the controller, when properly connected and working, supplies 5-7 volts to the glows. He said that when he bypassed the controller, that caused a full 12V to be supplied to the glow plugs. He said not to hold the momentary switch for longer than 5 seconds so as not to burn the glows out. He even went to legths of using a label maker that said not to hold them longer than 5. I have never had a problem getting the truck to start by running the glows for 5 seconds, but these last few weeks the days have been very cold and it has taken a bit more cranking than usual. My question is... is this guy full of crap? Could I be running my glows for the full 10 seconds? A quick inspection of the rigging showed the switch was connected to the purple lead on the relay. To me, that means the glows get 12V with or without the controller... it may appear that the circuit is showing 5-7 volts because of the massive draw of current, right? I don't know why they would require lower voltage on the glows... the lower the voltage the higher are the required amps to perform the same work. I would think they would want to utilize the full 12V any way they could... especially in the case of the glows which are one of the two biggest current draws in the whole truck.

Thanks!
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Old 11-30-2009, 04:32 PM
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Glow plugs, 83 thru 86, old style

I am going to make things easier for glow plug problems since cold weather is here.
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Old 12-03-2009, 07:51 PM
Marianna2003 Marianna2003 is offline
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I'll say it again! Use AC 12Gs or Autolite 1109s and you won't have to worry about melting your GPs down. You'll have to change the terminals but it's worth the effort. Don't believe me? Try it before you install them. You should preheat you GPs before installing them anyway. You'll see I know what I'm talking about. If anyone knows a BERU dealer that is willing to search for parts, have them look for a set that is designed for the military HUMVEE. The GPs for the HUMVEE will fit our IH engines.
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Old 12-03-2009, 08:45 PM
Marianna2003 Marianna2003 is offline
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Low voltage means higher current only works for electric motors. GPs are pure resistance. Lower voltage means lower current which means slower heating.
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:16 PM
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What ever you say Marianna.
You can post that as much as you want, I will never recommend anyone use them.

Autolite and AC glow plugs are garbage.

Amps = volts / ohms

So if you have a 12 volt system and .5 ohms resistance the glow plug draws 24 amps.
Four of them draw 96 amps.
192 amps for all 8 glow plugs fed with two 10 AWG wires.

If the voltage drop laws don't hold true for glow plugs, can you tell me why you have 12 volts going into the glow plug circuit and only 7 volts at the glow plugs?

My guess is, 96 amps should be running through a #3 wire instead of a #10 wire to deliver the amperage the glow plugs draw.
But I don't know much, I am only a master electrician.
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:36 PM
Marianna2003 Marianna2003 is offline
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No need to be sarcastic! The Master Electrician didn’t pick up on the statement posted by 16Vjohn “the lower the voltage the higher are the required amps to perform the same work” !!! This statement is true except it does not apply in any way to GPs as I tried to point out. GPs are pure resistance. You are right E(voltage)=I(current)times R(resistance). And we all know ‘You can’t fool Mother Nature’. Lower voltage means slower heating. I wonder if the engineers intentionally used the wires to drop the voltage to the GPs.
 
 
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