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7.3L IDI Diesels (Not Power Strokes) Technical discussion of topics related to vehicles powered by the 7.3 Liter In-Direct Injection Navistar engines.

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Old 11-24-2012, 01:06 PM   #1 (permalink)
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7.3 start up issue!!

Well a tale told a thousand times, but I have been through this thing with a comb and still have a start up problem that just wont pass!
I am sure it is not air, replaced lines, injector return kit and added an electric pump and find little to no air in the system, replaced the glow plug controller despite checking it and finding it ok and all glow plugs are good as it the flow of power to each. i did change the injection pump and found an improvement when it does start but still the same issue remains, it will turn over and over and you can cycle the glow plugs but it makes no difference, it will smoke but not start but it will eventually start with a roar and be fine. If you turn it off immediately it will not start again so fuel delivery is not a problem at least to the pump and will go through the same long crank to start. if it has run and is warm it will start no problem and run like a top but if it sits for an hour or so it will resume its attitude! Compression test is great, 425-480 psi
I am running out of thing to try and would love to make this go away, so wanted to know if this is bad injectors, bad spray pattern or no spray but more of a drop? Seems a bit strange being it runs nice once its going but just not sure any more!
Ideas?

Last edited by gtuplin; 11-24-2012 at 07:20 PM.
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Old 11-26-2012, 11:29 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Seems like this is a tough one, no one has an idea?
Changed out a few injectors and perhaps a bit better but no where near acceptable! Have I missed something?
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Old 11-26-2012, 11:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You need to have your injectors tested, without knowing what kind of shape they're in its all just a guess....
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Old 11-26-2012, 11:51 PM   #4 (permalink)
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How fast is the starter turning when the engine is cold? Needs to spin faster than you can count to develop heat and compression. Once it's warmed up, it doesn't need that "fast" spin to get it going again, as it will retain heat in the innards.
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Old 11-27-2012, 02:08 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Check your cold advance. When all warmed up do you get any smoke if so what color if your getting white smoke you should advance the timing just a little and that'll make it start easier. Have your injectors pop tested (most shops are close to free) and your timing checked (optical would be ideal) also try a little cetane booster like diesel kleen or stanadyn performance additive it also adds lube for ip wich will protect that new one you just put in also did you remove the gear when you changed the ip?
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Old 11-27-2012, 09:20 AM   #6 (permalink)
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So I did try injectors that were from a running engine but had only a slight change in the way it ran and not really any change in the way it starts and I did not remove the pump with the gear and housing attached so no chance of misalignment. I did add fuel additive and it has run through a tank of fuel with that and not really changing things, cold advance is working and timing is close but seems a degree o r so advanced by ear compared to the old pump.
It runs good when it starts, but when it starts the first time there is no surging or messaging around, it starts and revs up drops to idle and is fine. if you turn it off immediately it will go through the same long crank which makes me convinced it is not fuel delivery but a failure to ignite but all glow plugs are working and heating correctly!
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Old 11-27-2012, 11:07 AM   #7 (permalink)
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what glow plugs are in it? are they new? how long does the wts light stay on? did you check to see there getting voltage on both banks? theres a fusible link for each bank and i had one go once, they will not start on 4 glowplugs when its cold. try plugging it in for a few hours and see how it starts, let us know all these things and maybee it will help us get somewhere, dont give up
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Old 11-27-2012, 12:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
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So installed all new glow plugs last night despite the fact they tested ok as well installed a clear line on the return line at the check valve and waited for this morning which was 1 degree below freezing. With key on the electric fuel pump i installed engaged and yielded one small insignificant drop of air in the clear line and the controller was on for 12 seconds, engaged started that is ripping that thing over at better than average speed (charged batteries over night) for about 15 seconds and no start. Key off to cycle glow plugs again and turn over again for 20 seconds and off she goes with a roar drops to idle and runs great! Turned key off after a few second running then back on to glow plug cycle for 10 seconds this time then turned over for 20 seconds before starting with a roar and quickly return to idle and runs great. If it runs for a minute or so it will start every time after that without hesitation! I am getting power to each glow plug, what the heck is with this thing?
I tried to get the injectors tested but only one place will do it and I have to send them so shipping and shop rate factored in, i have ordered a set of Delphi injectors at $40 each and will have to try that I guess.
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Old 11-27-2012, 02:34 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Read this good and tell me what you think. I went thru a year of jacking with this and finally bent over and got dealer raped. Still didn't fix it. Then I found this and the symptoms matched my problems. Which by the way got worse as time what went on. Put my own in and guess what? It worked.

Powerstroke Injector Failure

Vehicles Effected: 1994‐2003 E and F series with 7.3L PowerStroke Engine

Concern: Effected vehicles will experience long cranking or no start during
start up after an extended cold sync. Once started the engine may
run rough for several minutes and poor engine performance will be
observed until engine oil temperature reaches operating
temperature. During the above conditions white smoke may be observed from the exhaust tailpipe.

Cause: Vehicles start to experience theses symptoms around half of the
B50 (see Appendix A) rating of the engine 260,000km (160,000miles) or equivalent hours of operation. Poor vehicle maintenance will shorten the
above mileage. The cause for this failure is wear of the lower poppet valve seat in the injector. This in turn lowers the position of the valve in the injector. The top of the poppet valve is attached to the armature plate with an armature screw. The armature is acted on by the solenoid to control oil movement into the injector.

Lower Poppet Valve Seat
In a new injector clearance between the armature plate and adapter housing of the injector is 0.004” Poppet valve wear will reduce this clearance to zero over time.

Armature Plate Clearance
Cause (cont.): Two issues will arise from this concern. The first is with a reduced clearance high viscosity oil will begin to cause a suction effect
between the armature and adapter housing. This suction is what causes inoperative injectors at start up. Performing a “buzz test” will isolate these injectors when cold by listening for a quiet or muted injector. No fault will be recorded in the scanner as this is an electrical test and the failure is mechanical. As engine oil heats up the viscosity lowers and suction acting on the armature is reduced and the injector begins to operate normally.
The second issue sees the armature screw itself break and cause the injector to be completely inoperative.
Conclusion: The obvious repair is injector replacement but it is recommended to follow all diagnostic procedures before coming to this conclusion.

Appendix A

It has become popular in the diesel engine business to describe engine durability in terms of "Bx life". This is usually described as B10 life; the time, in miles or hours of operation, that 10% of the units in service will require major repair. The remaining 90% will go farther. (Navistar's definition of major repair to an engine is when the repair requires removal of the cylinder head and/or the oil pan.) Other Bx numbers can be used, the next most popular being B50 life, where 50% of the engines will have required repair. This can be looked upon as "average" life to overhaul.
B10 B50
T444E 200,000 350,000
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Old 11-27-2012, 02:37 PM   #10 (permalink)
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The entry above is an article published by a member of the Assn of Diesel Specialists from Prince George Fuel Injection LTD. Makes a lot of sense.
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Old 11-28-2012, 01:07 PM   #11 (permalink)
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These motors don't even use the same injector as the power stroke so that's not his issue.
Try a compression test and see what the numbers are also if you don't like changing starters after 20-30sec of cranking you let it sit for 3-5min to cool
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1990 f250 4x4 e4od 7.3l idi
Turbo ip turned down tq screw
315/75r16
3in lift
K&n air filter and home made ram air
5in stack straight pipes
165,xxx mi (I think/hope)
Large tranny cooler
16-18mpg
Soon to be turbo'd with nice cold air and wraped exhauste be for turbo
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Old 11-28-2012, 01:38 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Praise be, I fixed it!!!
As mentioned I replaced the pump and had an improvement but not what I was hoping for then changed out a few injectors (only had a few used ones to try) and that helped a bit. 8 new injectors sure fixed it up! I think something let loose in the pump and sent fine debris to the injectors or some of them and perhaps not allowing them to function properly but almost like they were sticking open a bit as I found 3 that had wet tips.
This would cause excessive fuel in the chamber, allow air into the injector as it leaks down and making a rather had start problem.Thanks everyone for the help, never give up was good advise!
Turns over three times and flashed on cold start today 1 below freezing.
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Old 11-28-2012, 01:51 PM   #13 (permalink)
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This article DOESN'T apply

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rowan Redfire View Post
Read this good and tell me what you think. I went thru a year of jacking with this and finally bent over and got dealer raped. Still didn't fix it. Then I found this and the symptoms matched my problems. Which by the way got worse as time what went on. Put my own in and guess what? It worked.

Powerstroke Injector Failure

Vehicles Effected: 1994‐2003 E and F series with 7.3L PowerStroke Engine

Concern: Effected vehicles will experience long cranking or no start during
start up after an extended cold sync. Once started the engine may
run rough for several minutes and poor engine performance will be
observed until engine oil temperature reaches operating
temperature. During the above conditions white smoke may be observed from the exhaust tailpipe.

Cause: Vehicles start to experience theses symptoms around half of the
B50 (see Appendix A) rating of the engine 260,000km (160,000miles) or equivalent hours of operation. Poor vehicle maintenance will shorten the
above mileage. The cause for this failure is wear of the lower poppet valve seat in the injector. This in turn lowers the position of the valve in the injector. The top of the poppet valve is attached to the armature plate with an armature screw. The armature is acted on by the solenoid to control oil movement into the injector.

Lower Poppet Valve Seat
In a new injector clearance between the armature plate and adapter housing of the injector is 0.004” Poppet valve wear will reduce this clearance to zero over time.

Armature Plate Clearance
Cause (cont.): Two issues will arise from this concern. The first is with a reduced clearance high viscosity oil will begin to cause a suction effect
between the armature and adapter housing. This suction is what causes inoperative injectors at start up. Performing a “buzz test” will isolate these injectors when cold by listening for a quiet or muted injector. No fault will be recorded in the scanner as this is an electrical test and the failure is mechanical. As engine oil heats up the viscosity lowers and suction acting on the armature is reduced and the injector begins to operate normally.
The second issue sees the armature screw itself break and cause the injector to be completely inoperative.
Conclusion: The obvious repair is injector replacement but it is recommended to follow all diagnostic procedures before coming to this conclusion.

Appendix A

It has become popular in the diesel engine business to describe engine durability in terms of "Bx life". This is usually described as B10 life; the time, in miles or hours of operation, that 10% of the units in service will require major repair. The remaining 90% will go farther. (Navistar's definition of major repair to an engine is when the repair requires removal of the cylinder head and/or the oil pan.) Other Bx numbers can be used, the next most popular being B50 life, where 50% of the engines will have required repair. This can be looked upon as "average" life to overhaul.
B10 B50
T444E 200,000 350,000
The IDI doesn't have HEIU injectors, they are mechanical.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gtuplin
Praise be, I fixed it!!!
WOO HOO!!! like you say, never give up
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1994 F-350 7.3 IDI Turbo, crew cab, E4OD,4:10 L/S, LB, Dually Photos
ATS Turbo upgrades: 3" DP with 3" exhaust Magnaflow XL muffler: Pictures Here
2012 Copper Canyon 273 FWRET w/2 slides, Air Lift 5000 bags
Pillar pod: Autometer C2 Series gauges: pyro,trans, boost, water, oil pressure
Hypermax Cowl induction, K&N air filter, flex-a-lite 26K trans cooler with fan,Tekonsha prodigy
Train Horns: Pictures here

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Old 12-14-2012, 01:54 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Sorry all. I missed the fact that it was an IDI
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