Need a little help...D90 in the cold?? - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old December 28th, 2012, 08:00 AM
cms2012
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Christina Schwefel
1997 D90 ST
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Need a little help...D90 in the cold??

Hi there,

I recently bought a 1997 D90 for my husband for the holidays. It came from a dealer in CA. We are in CT and have the truck in our garage--but it's not a heated garage and it seems almost colder than the temp outside! The truck is started (we start it every day) but it is a little sluggish to start and this morning no lights go on. I assume it's because the battery needs a charge? I know nothing and just want to be sure I am doing everything right to keep the truck in good shape.

The other thing is that as soon as it was delivered and I drove it home, the check engine light was on. I was told that this is normal due to lack of use (it was on a truck for a week).

Any thoughts are appreciated!

Christina
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  #2  
Old December 28th, 2012, 08:20 AM
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Jason England
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CEL shouldn't be on ... Take it to any auto zone and get them to get the code from it ... Then post here for the coat efficient fix.

They all crank a little slow when it's cold. No big deal. I used to keep mine out side I'm NY and it never failed to start in winter.
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  #3  
Old December 28th, 2012, 09:14 AM
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Bill Adams
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Hey Christina! I have an aunt in Westport.
It's 16 years out of Solihull, so there may be a few issues. I am guessing it is a gas motor and not a diesel. It should crank nice and strong and start within a few spins. If it has the battery that you bought it with still in there, I'd probably want to replace that if it was me. Also check the ground strap on the engine block and the battery negative cable connections for cleanliness and corrosion.
There are a number of things that you should think about renewing just as a matter of course with a new-to-you vehicle. All the belts and hoses, distributor cap and rotor, spark plugs and wires, oil change, all the fluids like the differentials, gear box, transfer case. Have the brake fluid flushed, as well as coolant (which you'll do when the hoses are done), and have the air conditioner system checked.
Note the date and mileage so that you know when to do it all again.
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  #4  
Old December 28th, 2012, 09:22 AM
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Jason England
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One think to note is that this won't be like a more modern car ... its 16 years old but a basic design going back over 50 years .. it drives more like a tractor than a toyota!

Sears do great batteries for a decent price ...

I'm just wondering because hubby hasn't been introduced and you are asking the questions ... was this truck really for you??? ;-)
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Soapy water / KY jelly, etc. is is basically a must. Yes, good idea to remove trim panels - only takes 5 more minutes to do so.
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  #5  
Old December 28th, 2012, 09:36 AM
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Jeff
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cms2012 View Post
The truck is started (we start it every day) ...
A little off-topic, but if you are not going to drive the vehicle and get it up to full operating temperature, then the worst thing you can do is start the truck daily and let it idle for a while.
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  #6  
Old December 28th, 2012, 09:51 AM
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Joshua
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Now that that's solved - let's see some pics of the truck you bought him! You never updated your other thread, so we were all left hanging...
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  #7  
Old December 28th, 2012, 10:56 AM
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Trevor Griffiths
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Land Rover does offer a block heater for the V8 gas engines and although some would some argue it's probably unnecessary unless you were in an artic climate, (but even then, I think they just leave the cars running!), it's likely to help cold start up.
That being said, a weak battery or a poor ground connection are simple to resolve.
Check Engine light-there are a number of people here who will offer diagnosis if you can get the fault code read. FYI- the OBD 2 connector on the 97 is behind the little cubby in front of the gear selectors.
Another opinion, I use Interstate batteries almost exclusively.

------ Follow up post added December 28th, 2012 10:59 AM ------

Also, Christina, David did post the 90 on here recently under SWODEFENDER. Just FYI.
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  #8  
Old December 28th, 2012, 11:18 AM
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Dave Lucas
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Like other have said sounds like the battery might need attention. Starting it and letting it idle for a short period I time will not recharge the battery so the battery might be ok still but each time you start it you are draining more power from it than you are replacing.

If you are going to leave it in the garage for extended periods of time I would put a battery tender on it.

IF the 90 was really for your husband... you should get him to join the site, being part of the community can help ease the pain of ownership for a new defender owner and will make his overall experience mo better.
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  #9  
Old December 28th, 2012, 11:49 AM
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evilfij
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Christina,

Welcome to D90 ownership!

Take a look at the battery and see how old it is. It if is more than 5 years old, I would be inclined to replace it. I like the interstate battery that is the stock size or the size found in mid99-2002 p38a range rovers. If it looks newer, put a battery tender on it and let it sit for a couple days and it should be fine.

As far as the check engine light, I would go to your favorite autoparts store (or amazon etc. -- great time to buy a battery tender too) and buy an OBDII code reader (you don't need a fancy one and it will be less than $50) as they are nice to have. It is true that autozone will read codes for free, but you are probably better off having one as it is easier. Read the code and post it here. It is probably nothing significant, but better to deal with it now.

One last tip. When you start a D90 (or any rover V8), it is best to turn the key to ignition (all the lights on the dash come up) listen for the fuel pump buzzing for a few seconds, and then turn the key all the way. They start much easier that way as it allows the fuel pump pressure to build up before running the starter.
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  #10  
Old December 28th, 2012, 01:32 PM
maleger
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Marc-Andre Leger
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I wish my wife would buy me a Defender ! This is one lucky husband.
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  #11  
Old December 29th, 2012, 01:09 PM
cms2012
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Christina Schwefel
1997 D90 ST
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Hi guys!

I will post pics...right away. Truck is definitely not for me because I have trouble driving it.

My husband still loves the arles blue color so I kind of goofed on that one and have been keeping my eyes open.

Roverlab---where do I find that post?

The hubby is taking to car to Autozone now to get the code so I can post it. And he's going to buy a trickle charger??? No idea what that is. He will join this weekend.
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  #12  
Old December 29th, 2012, 02:24 PM
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Dave Lucas
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Battery tender is a well know brand of trickle charger that is sold many places.

Battries plus, Harbor Freight and Sears to name a few.

You can find him a blue 90 and keep the green one for you.. sounds like the perfect plan to me
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  #13  
Old December 29th, 2012, 08:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
Christina,

Welcome to D90 ownership!

Take a look at the battery and see how old it is. It if is more than 5 years old, I would be inclined to replace it. I like the interstate battery that is the stock size or the size found in mid99-2002 p38a range rovers. If it looks newer, put a battery tender on it and let it sit for a couple days and it should be fine.

As far as the check engine light, I would go to your favorite autoparts store (or amazon etc. -- great time to buy a battery tender too) and buy an OBDII code reader (you don't need a fancy one and it will be less than $50) as they are nice to have. It is true that autozone will read codes for free, but you are probably better off having one as it is easier. Read the code and post it here. It is probably nothing significant, but better to deal with it now.

One last tip. When you start a D90 (or any rover V8), it is best to turn the key to ignition (all the lights on the dash come up) listen for the fuel pump buzzing for a few seconds, and then turn the key all the way. They start much easier that way as it allows the fuel pump pressure to build up before running the starter.
I agree. I drive a 97 as well and the CEL comes on sometimes if I'm not patient and allows the fuel pump do its job before starting. Very annoying but part of the love/hate relationship that will grow on you over time.
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  #14  
Old December 29th, 2012, 09:03 PM
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Trevor Griffiths
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In for Sale, 10th one down, says 94 D90 26,000 posted by SWODefender
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