1985 2.5 n/a cold start issues - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old October 21st, 2015, 01:40 PM
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Brian
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1985 2.5 n/a cold start issues

If the temperature is above 70, 10-15 seconds on the glow plugs will start the engine right up. It does have a rough start but holding the has pedal down slightly after it starts clears that up in about 10 seconds and it idles smoothly (and stops smoking).

I put in new glow plugs, cleaned all the contact points. The wire between the plugs is new and the one it connects to is also new/clean. The plugs I bought were the quick heat plugs for a Citroen that I have seen recommended as a replacement for the land rover specific application.

Now, from what I can tell by looking at the injector pump, someone has monkeyed with the idle set screw (before I got the vehicle, it was out of commission last winter so I didn't know about this issue). I have seen pictures where it not only has a nut to keep it secured but a wire as well. I know the injector has a cold start function but that set screw has to be in a very specific position. I realize that is usually for much colder temperatures but could that be my problem here? I got it to start today just short of draining the battery (65 degrees). It has no problems starting when it is warm out, or the engine is warm.

Any suggestions?
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  #2  
Old October 21st, 2015, 02:09 PM
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Robert Davis
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Brian, just checking if you have verified (+) 12V at the glow plugs and if your starter is spinning the engine fast enough.

As far as the IP is concerned, no telling what adjustments were made in the past and if that's coming into play regarding starting.
DO NOT USE STARTING SPRAY FLUID, regardless of what is printed on the can.

We have some 3.1KW starters for the TDI engines that will bolt right on and spin your engine much faster if that will help.
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Old October 21st, 2015, 02:39 PM
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Starting a diesel is a function of compression. IE the diesel fuel explodes because of the pressure and atomized fuel, not a spark like a gas engine. If your battery is weak, starter tired, or engine worn (ie lower than optimal compression) the engine will be hard to start. A couple things that help are a block heater, thinner oil ie things that help the engine spin faster when not warmed up yet. Usual rule of thumb, the faster a diesel spins on the starter the easier it is to start. Glow plugs are just to help that first explosion happen.
I have started tdi engines @ 15f without using glow plugs.
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  #4  
Old October 21st, 2015, 04:21 PM
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Brian
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I will check the voltage at the glow plugs. That I have not done. The starter is brand new. It was a direct replacement for the original. I will also have to check the battery as well, I didn't think of that. I'll give them a check tomorrow and report back. Thanks! (The battery is a year old optima 900CCA.) Perhaps the alternator is going?

------ Follow up post added October 21st, 2015 02:24 PM ------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Douglas View Post
Starting a diesel is a function of compression. IE the diesel fuel explodes because of the pressure and atomized fuel, not a spark like a gas engine. If your battery is weak, starter tired, or engine worn (ie lower than optimal compression) the engine will be hard to start. A couple things that help are a block heater, thinner oil ie things that help the engine spin faster when not warmed up yet. Usual rule of thumb, the faster a diesel spins on the starter the easier it is to start. Glow plugs are just to help that first explosion happen.
I have started tdi engines @ 15f without using glow plugs.
What oil do you recommend? I was using shell rotella 15-40
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Old October 21st, 2015, 04:29 PM
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Next after compression is timing. Retarded timing makes cold starting difficult. Make sure it is correct. I find these run best a bit advanced from the pin setting.

Once warm make sure the idle is set correctly by the manual.
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Old October 21st, 2015, 04:33 PM
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Well, my next order of business was to replace the timing belt and pulley (lord only knows when that was done last). So I guess that's something to look at as well.
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Old October 22nd, 2015, 11:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suburbanloki View Post
Well, my next order of business was to replace the timing belt and pulley (lord only knows when that was done last). So I guess that's something to look at as well.
There is no need to open the timing case to check or adjust timing. Timing is checked with a drill bit through the side of the pump and you adjust by rotating the pump body. Very quick and easy.
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