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Do replace batteries and alternators in sets? If you have a different item?, please just post in the

  • I manage to replace them separately when the idiot lights come on.

    Votes: 2 50.0%
  • I make regular appointments at a certified dealer. I don't have issues.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • I get about two years on alternators and battery sets.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • I get about three years on alternators and battery sets.

    Votes: 2 50.0%
  • I buy special non-stock heavy duty equipment that never fails.

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    4
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Frozen Tundra Cascading electrical failure mid-winter blues

I'm wondering if any of you diesel types who live where you get weeks below zero degrees Fahrenheit think about the electrical twists of these beasts. Everything is built bigger and heavier than regular autos and trucks. Hen things start to break - the failures seem to cascade through the system. A dead alternator takes out the batteries. Week batteries take out a starter or the alternator. I have seemed to replace them in sets. I'm heading into my third set of alternator/batteries in eight years. Is this normal? I'm on my first replacement starter (lifetime?)

We were supposed to hit -20F last night, only made it to -15. It got up to -2F this afternoon. My diesel's starter wouldn't turn. I had the block heater plugged in, I charged the batteries, and tried again. The starter still didn't turn.

I'm posting a poll for the guys who live int the wash that comes down from Canada on to the plains. If you live in Arizona, Florida, Southern California or some other paradise where you are still running the OEM battery that shipped with your truck after sixteen years, please don't vote.
 

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Heat kills a battery much faster than cold. Cold just sucks out the performance. Starters just seem to suck in general. and on that note, I have had a starter that checked good at NAPA but ended up being the heart of the problem (replaced battery/alternator first). I would say your problem is the starter. Regular batteries last about 6 years and alternators are a crap shoot.
DENNY
 

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I got 3 yrs on my batteries (replace both at the same time) and 6+ yrs on the alt right now without issue
 

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Discussion Starter #4
2001 7.3L stalled in the middle of the driveway. I can get the little cars out around it. I had my llocal shop put in a new GPR. Apparently that's not it.

I saw a thread on CPS Cam Position Sensor. It started up fairly cold at the dealer. I drove it to work the next day. I started it at lunch. It ran home fine.

I parked it for a day - didn't start yesterday for a trip to Milwaukee. I plugged in the block heater. and left it sit. It won't start.

The weather is really making it difficult to handle this.

I've had it for ten years, but the fight is going out of me.
 

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Probably worth starting a new thread with your issue.

So it has new GPR?
Did they test the GPs and determine if all 8 are functioning in range (measured in Ohms)?

Did you have a new CPS installed?
This would be one of the first suggestions based on your dead in driveway? (Right after the question of did you run out of fuel? Lol)

What is the history of the oil? Same oil you use each winter? What is the viscosity? Is the oil level in the crosshatches of dipstick? How many miles on oil change? Old or low oil can cause starting issues especially in cold temps.

What are your night time temps? Do you use a fuel additive in the winter to remove water in fuel?
 

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You said that is stalled. Was it initially running? Did you simply gel the fuel? Although, with that, if you plug the block heater, I would think it might start and run momentarily. Because of NY winters and occasional run to VT, I only use the 5w 40 syn rotella. It is good from NY to FL and it spins much faster on start up than with 15w 40.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I took it to the stealer. They diagnosed a bad power cord on the block heater.

I used a magnetic tank heater stuck to the oil pan. It's in the teens now and doesn't take as much heat to get it popping.

I used winterized diesel with 911 added.

The dealer only wanted $300.00 parts and labor to replace the cord and element. 8O
 

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Does this mean you did not have the new cord & element installed?

If you opted not to pay $300 then you may be happy to learn you can buy an aftermarket cord on amazon for under $25 and its a simple project to replace only the cord and leave the original heating element installed (which requires draining a bunch of coolant if it had to be removed). The cord simply unplugs from the element which is located in the aluminum housing your oil filter screws into and then you just have to route the new cord to the front bumper and tie it about 4 places with cable ties to hold it in place.

The cord is a very common failure even though the heating element continues to work fine. The element seldom fails.

I think most members will agree that the block heater is a superior method to warm your engine block instead of the magnetic oil pan heater. It would be good to fix the cord.
 

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I have the batteries tested every time I go to the dealer and have the oil changed so that's about 2 times a year. If you look look at them you shouldn't have to replace the alternator every time you replace the batteries if you look at them every once in a while. Look for them to leak. When they start that they are junk. Sure you can clean them but you didn't stop the leak. Sure sign of trouble. If you wait till the battery goes dead than chances are you will drop another $200 on a alternator that you could have avoided in the first place
There sometimes a good thing to take it to the dealer. They also found a tire that looked good only to find out the side wall on the inside to be split apart about 3/4 they way around the tire.
I know every one can change there own oil. I can also. I have a garage full of tools also. But I don't have a lift or a load tester for batteries and I don't know who here has one ether.
I have 5 Fords and they all go to the dealer for oil changes. I do however do as much of the maintenance my self. I do my own fuel filters but I haven't found out what to do with the diesel I drain out so I will stop doing that also. You can buy your own oil and take it to Ford dealer and they will use your oil and filter for around $29.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Stantor GPR.

New cord and block heater - less than Ford dealer at my little local shop.

Winterized diesel + 911 when really cold.

It has run admirably for the last (six?) weeks. Twice to Chicago and back in the last two weeks. Parking these beasts in Chicago is a challenge!
 
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