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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 09-20-2010, 07:10 PM   #1 (permalink)
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truck wont start, dead batteries

I have a 1993 ford non turbo diesel pickup that wont start...i jump in to start it and it cranks over fine but after about 7 or 8 seconds the batteries run dead, i have to pull it around to get it started..im thinkin it might be an electrical problem but any advice would be helpful..i have new batteries in there to
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Old 09-20-2010, 07:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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What size batteries did you put in? You need 2 840 CCA minimum. Could also be the starter going south.

I have seen batteries that were no good off the shelf. Can you take them back to the place you bought them and have them load tested? Load testing is where they hook up to the batteries using a simulated load like a starter would draw.
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Old 09-20-2010, 09:40 PM   #3 (permalink)
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i went and got the same size batteries that were in there before...and i took out the starter and took it all apart and it works fine..and even wen it did start before it drained the batteries..like earlier this year..it took awhile to start like longer than normal..im thinkin that was probably a timing problem
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Old 09-20-2010, 09:46 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
im thinkin that was probably a timing problem
Have you messed with the IP at all? It is gear driven so no timing chain to stretch.
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ATS Turbo upgrades: 3" DP with 3" exhaust Magnaflow XL muffler: Pictures Here
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Old 09-20-2010, 09:52 PM   #5 (permalink)
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yes i wen i changed the pump i accidentally took out the timing gear and i dont think i got the marks perfect and i know they have to be perfect but i just havent had the time to bring it to the mechanics shop yet
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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There is a thread on the IDI forums somewhere that shows how to line the tming marks back up if you removed the IP cover. MIght take a bit of a search though. IF I find it I will post the link in this thread.
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Old 09-21-2010, 08:28 PM   #7 (permalink)
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i know how to line them its just theyre not dead nuts perfect and i would rather bring it to a mechanic because i have messed with it enough lol...do you have any more advice on y my batteries keep running dead?
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Old 09-22-2010, 12:20 AM   #8 (permalink)
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if you had the timing problem from pulling your ip and timing gear, did u end up doing alot of cranking to get it started? if so its possible you may burned up the new batteries or the starter solenoid (that is mounted ON the starter). like chuckster said, i'd get it all load tested. if it all passes then i'd look towards something else, what condition are your wires and terminals coming off of your batteries. are they both grounded good? do they both have good contact with the batteries or are they corroded?
if your batteries are dying after only 7-8 seconds, is that after they are fully charged?
check your batteries right before you attempt to start the truck, its possible that you have drain on the batteries while the truck is off.
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Old 09-22-2010, 07:10 PM   #9 (permalink)
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it could possibly be the solenoid on the starter i will have to check...the wires seem good but whenever i clean the terminals the driver side cables are corroded after about a week.. and around 2 months ago i bought a new battery for the drivers side but maybe i need new terminals..do u guys think maybe the glow plugs might be bad? just a suggestion since its taking so much power to start
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Old 09-22-2010, 07:26 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Okay so we're on the same page. You have TWO new batteries or just ONE? If the cable is getting corroded after only after a week, then something is going on. Bad GP's won't cause the batteries to go bad, they just won't heat up. A controller that is stuck "on" will drain batteries and cook the GP's.
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ATS Turbo upgrades: 3" DP with 3" exhaust Magnaflow XL muffler: Pictures Here
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Old 10-04-2010, 06:09 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I am a bit confused as well. You either have new batteries (plural) or you do not have new batteries (plural). Having a 2 month old battery isn't the same has having two new batteries.

Before people can help you, they have to know your situation.
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Old 10-06-2010, 02:04 PM   #12 (permalink)
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here is some info on testing batteries !! i had a couple batteries that i bought at AUTOZONE and they would not start my truck , they checked out good with my load tester BUT when i did a HYDROMETER test there was a couple bad cells . took it back to AUTOZONE and they tested it with there SUPPER DUTY FANCY LOOKING LOAD TESTER and said there was nothing wrong with it , i said BULL S... and showed them the HYDROMETER TESTING METHOD those guys never seen a battery tested with on before !! but said that there policy was that it showed good so they could not exchange it !!
i was fit to be tied , finally the manager came and told me that there machine said it was good and that they cant exchange it !! i told him that i had better luck dealing with WAL-MART and i wont be back ever !! guess he hated to here that and gave me a new battery !!


6. Battery Testing can be done in more than one way. The most accurate method is measurement of specific gravity and battery voltage. To measure specific gravity buy a temperature compensating hydrometer, to measure voltage use a digital D.C. Voltmeter. A quality load tester may be a good purchase if you need to test sealed batteries.

For any of these methods, you must first fully charge the battery and then remove the surface charge. If the battery has been sitting at least several hours (I prefer at least 12 hours) you may begin testing. To remove surface charge the battery must be discharged for several minutes. Using a headlight (high beam) will do the trick. After turning off the light you are ready to test the battery.

State of Charge Specific Gravity Voltage
12V 6V
100% 1.265 12.7 6.3
*75% 1.225 12.4 6.2
50% 1.190 12.2 6.1
25% 1.155 12.0 6.0
Discharged 1.120 11.9 6.0

*Sulfation of Batteries starts when specific gravity falls below 1.225 or voltage measures less than 12.4 for a 12v battery, or 6.2 for a 6 volt battery. Sulfation hardens on the battery plates reducing and eventually destroying the ability of the battery to generate Volts and Amps.

Load testing is yet another way of testing a battery. Load test removes amps from a battery much like starting an engine would. A load tester can be purchased at most auto parts stores. Some battery companies label their battery with the amp load for testing. This number is usually 1/2 of the CCA rating. For instance, a 500CCA battery would load test at 250 amps for 15 seconds. A load test can only be performed if the battery is near or at full charge.

The results of your testing should be as follows:

Hydrometer readings should not vary more than .05 differences between cells.

Digital Voltmeters should read as the voltage is shown in this document. The sealed AGM and Gel-Cell battery voltage (full charged) will be slightly higher in the 12.8 to 12.9 ranges. If you have voltage readings in the 10.5 volts range on a charged battery, that typically indicates a shorted cell.

If you have a maintenance free wet cell, the only ways to test are voltmeter and load test. Any of the maintenance free type batteries that have a built in hydrometer(black/green window) will tell you the condition of 1 cell of 6. You may get a good reading from 1 cell but have a problem with other cells in the battery.
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Old 10-07-2010, 07:36 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Voltage regulator

I read on a earlier post that the voltage regulator was causing a slow drain and death of the batteries, it's a $20 part at the autozone store. it just gets old and starts to act funny after 20 plus years I guess
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Old 10-07-2010, 09:57 PM   #14 (permalink)
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i changed 2 glow plugs and it seemed to help it...although theres a fuel problem i havent charged the batteries up and tried starting it so i pull it to get it started..im guessing its the injectors like my dad said he changed em every 100,000 miles and it just hit 301,000 so its probably time to change em
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Old 10-07-2010, 11:19 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Always replace batteries in pairs. Connecting one new battery and one old battery in parallel can damage the new battery. Consistently leaving the batteries in a discharged state causes irreversible sulfation, which will turn new batteries to junk in nothing flat. These trucks require Group 65 batteries to ensure proper fitment and capacity. Clean and neutralize or replace corroded terminals before connecting them to new batteries.
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