96 Powerstroke hard starting - Diesel Forum - TheDieselStop.com
Power Strokes 1994-1997 General Technical discussion of topics related to vehicles powered by the Power Stroke engine in 1994 through 1997 models.

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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-29-2006, 06:28 AM Thread Starter
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96 Powerstroke hard starting

New to both Powerstrokes and this site. 96 7.3 Turbo diesel is hard to start in the morning. I live in Fla. so it's not cold out. The wait to start light comes on for @ 8 seconds, then the truck cranks for a long time. It will eventually start. After it starts, my ammeter stays low for a few minutes until the glow plug relay shuts off, then returns to normal. If I shut the truck off and restart it within, say, an hour, it starts fine. It only happens when the engine is cold. This problem started a few months ago, before that it started fine.
Anybody have any suggestions?

96 F-250 XLT 7.3 Powerstroke Turbo. Bone stock. 158,5000 mi.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-29-2006, 06:48 AM
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Re: 96 Powerstroke hard starting

If you'r trying to start after only 8 seconds of glow plug opperation ,it will be hard to start. Wait another 20 seconds after the light goes out before you crank it. You may want to do a search on testing you'r gpr and glowplugs. I believe this may be a sticky thread in the 7.3 99 and up forum.
Good luck


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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-29-2006, 07:29 AM
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Re: 96 Powerstroke hard starting

Several questions come to mind:

Any smoke while cranking but not starting? When it does finally start is there smoke at that time? Does it start OK warm but not cold?

Below is a checklist I came across some time ago, might get you started. (on the diagnostic process, I mean -- I made a funny!! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/biggrin.gif[/img])

Dave / Believer45


No Start check list:

What I will show you is a rough draft of the sheet that the technicianís use to go by when they have a hard start / no start concern. This sheet has to be filled out under a warranty claim or will be kicked back to the dealer. Iím going to add some of my comments to each one. So sit back and enjoy the ride, that is if you get your truck started. They have changed the order of the steps as the years went on but the sheet is basically the same from 94 1/2 to 01.

#1 Visual engine/Chassis Inspection


Comment: Just a basic check over for anything out of the ordinary.

#2 Check Engine Oil Level

Contaminants,Correct grade / Viscosity/ Miles / hours on Oil,Correct level,level in High Pressure Pump reservoir

Comments: This has got to be the most over looked problem on the powerstroke. I have seen technicianís spend hour after hour looking for a problem, just to find it was low on oil.

#3 Intake/Exhaust Restriction

Inspect air filter /ducts-exhaust system and back pressure valve.

Comments: I have seen a lot of squished tail pipes on buses. The air cleanerhousing has a filter minder (restriction gauge) on it. A plugged air filter could cause a lot of problems. I have also seen the back pressure valve come on uncommanded. What caused this you asked, the back pressure regulator was bad.

#4 Sufficient Clean fuel

Check fuel tanks/Drain sample from fuel filter while cranking. If possible ask customer if the water in fuel or fuel filter (restriction) lamp has come on.

Comments: If there is anything a powerstroke hates itís water. If there is a lot of water in the fuel filter housing it could corrode the heater apart and end up by shorting out on the housing causing a fuse to blow. If that happens you could have a no start condition. If you are trying to drain the fuel filter housing and nothing is coming out, you could crack open the cover a little or crank the engine over, it doesnít need to start.

#5 Tandem Fuel Pump Pressure

Measure fuel pressure at the shrader valve located on the regulator block. It must have a minimum of 100 RPM cranking speed for 20 seconds and if it has dual tanks it should be checked on both tanks.

Comments: If the pressure is below cranking spec the fuel filter should be replaced first and retest.

#6 Perform KOEO On Demand Test

Use The NGS Tester to check for codes.A pass Code is P1111

Comments: NGS stands for (New Generation Star) tester. KOEO stands for (Key on Engine off). This test is used to determine if the PCM (Powertrain Control module) has detected any fault conditions. If a fault is detected a diagnostic trouble code should be set.

#7 Retrieve Continuous Trouble Codes

Diagnostic Codes retrieved during this test are historical faults. Pass Code P1111.

Comments: The purpose of this is to determine if the PCM has detected any historical or intermittent fault conditions. The condition that caused a continuous code may no longer exist. In this test function there is a button to clear codes. This will clear all the codes unless its a hard fault (meaning happening right now) code. I have seen techís clear the codes in the Continuous mode and then check for codes in the other modeís not knowing that they cleared them.

#8 KOEO Injector Electrical Self Test

Use the NGS tester. Pass Code P1111. All injectors will momentarily buzz, then individual injectors will buzz in sequence 1 through 8. Diagnostic codes will be transmitted after the test is completed.

Comments: The test will not always pick up a weak injector. What I do is listen to the sounds of the buzzing, usually a problem injector sounds quieter than the rest.

#9 NGS Tool- Data List Monitoring

NGS tester may reset below 9.5 volts. Select the parameters indicated from the NGS parameter list and monitor while cranking. The pidís are V PWR (vehicle power ) meaning batteries. RPM (revolutions per minute). ICP ( injection control pressure) and FUEL PW (pulse width). V PWR - Cranking spec is 7 volt minimum. If V PWR indicates low voltage, check battery volt, charging system or power. Circuits grounds to PCM.

RPM- low RPM could be an indication of starting/charging system problems. No RPM indicated with the engine cranking- could be CMP circuit fault, check for diagnostic trouble codes.

ICP- a minimum of 500 PSI(3.4 mpa) is required before the injectors are enabled. No or low oil in the reservoir, system leakage, faulty IPR or high pressure pump could cause pressure loss.

NOTE: CMP signal is required before ICP pressure is allowed above 800 PSI.

FUEL PW- No fuel demand command signal(0 ms ) when ICP, RPM and V PWR signals are correct usually indicated loss of CMP sync signal.(Check for trouble codes and check CMP circuit)

Comments: Obviously without an NGS tester you wonít be able to perform these checks, but this is a quick way for a technician to see what circuit is having the problem. The CMP ( camshaft position sensor) is located in the front cover of the engine and is one of the sensors that causes the most problems. The CMP sensor is a hall effect sensor used to indicate engine speed and camshaft position. They have also been through a lot of upgrades since the engine first came out.

#10 Glow Plug System Operation

Check voltage between the glow plug relay terminal with the single black/red wire and battery ground. If no voltage present, repair open in supply circuit(two fusible link wires connected to starter relay). Check voltage between the glow plug relay terminal with the two brown wires and battery ground. Turn key to the run position, measure ĎONí time. Verify sufficient glow plug ĎONí time. If no voltage present, replace glow plug relay. 9-12 volts relay on time the spec is 10 to 120 seconds. NOTE: Wait to Start Lamp ĎONí time is Independent from Glow Plug Relay ĎONí time.

Glow Plug Operation: Measure Glow Plug Resistance to Batt. Ground, Remove all glow plug/injector connectors and measure GP Harness Resistance to Relay. Spec for glow plug to ground is .1 to 2 ohms. Spec for connector to relay is 0 to 1 ohms.

Comments: Nine out of ten times the glow plug relay is the cause of a hard start and I believe it should be checked second behind checking the oil on the check list. The latest hard start sheets move this test up depending on engine temperature. When checking for a glow plug problem pay careful attention to the harness end and connectors for burnt wires.

[/ QUOTE ]

THANK YOU to all the heroes in our military and all the heroes at home who wait for their safe return. I am humbled by and grateful for your service and sacrifice.


'95 F250 ext cab long bed, PSD, 5 speed, 2 wheel drive, 3.55 gears, 286,000 miles, Edge Evolution CTS (LINK TO MY REVIEW), LUK clutch, homemade REAR BUMPER, open element AIR FILTER, 36" ARE contractor cap. With tools, full of fuel and me on board (300 lbs) steer 3620, drive 3860 total 7480.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-29-2006, 07:43 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 96 Powerstroke hard starting

Thanks, Dave, I'll give that a try.

96 F-250 XLT 7.3 Powerstroke Turbo. Bone stock. 158,5000 mi.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-29-2006, 07:50 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 96 Powerstroke hard starting

There is no smoke while it's cranking, then a burst of smoke when it does start, then the smoke stops. It only does it when it's cold. As I said, if I restart it within an hour or so, while it's still warm, it starts fine.

96 F-250 XLT 7.3 Powerstroke Turbo. Bone stock. 158,5000 mi.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-29-2006, 10:05 AM
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Re: 96 Powerstroke hard starting

Glow plugs, glow plug relay. classic symptoms. On the next cool start and from now on remember that the wait to start light time is NOT the full cycle of glow plug heat, thats only the pcm telling you that the cycle has started. The volt gauge discharge for a couple of minutes is the plugs trying to heat. Give it a minute before turning it over. after one minute and it doesn't fire instantly, bet nearly every one of the plugs are bad. Plug in the heater until you can change the plugs. With the high compression of the 7.3 you are wearing on your starter bad with long crank cycles. Good luck with it!


10 17 08

BDP/Casserly's stage 3 HI-BIRDS
BDP Fuel system
Hypermax rods

96 F-350 CC, XLT, drw, 2wd,...

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