Hard to start when cold - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 10-20-2007, 03:36 PM
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Question Hard to start when cold

I have a 1995 Ford Powerstroke. It just started to get cold out recently. On cold mornings the truck wont start. If I cycle the key three times it will start but the whole truck will bounce. So mornings it will blow white smoke and then start little bit after that. I was told the fuel pump might be doing this. Does my truck have a frame mounted pump or just the one on the engine. I know the glow plugs are working and they were just replace this summer. Can the glow plugs not be getting enought voltage, like i said they are working but i dont know the voltages they sould have. Any help would be great. This site gave me good information before, its a life saver.
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Old 10-20-2007, 03:59 PM
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Sounds to me that your getting fuel if you have white smoke that is unburnt fuel. Check your glow plug relay first. There is two large posts one is always hot from the batteries the other large post will get hot once you cycle the key to the wait to start if you don't have any voltage after the key is cycled replace the relay.
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Old 10-21-2007, 08:10 AM
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If the relay was bad, why whould the truck start after I tried to start it then cycled it twice then it started. can i be a fuel problem even though there white smoke. Where would the glow plug relay be. also when i start it and drive it will have great power through first gear but as soon as it hits second i lose all power but no smoke behind me. the truck will slow down and almost dies. i though it was the fuel filter so i replaced them but still the same. can the two be related.

Last edited by pullinpower350; 10-21-2007 at 08:12 AM. Reason: word correction
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Old 10-21-2007, 11:59 AM
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Its possible its a fuel related problem just easier to check the relay first. The relay is on the top of the engine passenger side near the front. You can't miss it. Should have 12volts hot all the time on one large post when the key is cycled to the wait to start you should have 12 volts to the opposite large post. With a diesel you start by compression in the cylinders creating heat, but the glow plugs aid startup especially when its colder out. Sounds to me with your follow up post I would get your fuel pressure checked also.
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Old 10-23-2007, 09:59 AM
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You may try to start her, a minute after the "wait to start" light comes off...

At least my truck starts much better...
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Old 11-03-2007, 05:49 AM
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Maybe the sponsors can post this as a sticky as I have been replying to a lot of these hard start threads, which always happens when it starts to get cold.
Here goes and I hope it helps.

How to check Glow Plug System

To check the Glow Plug Relay (GPR)
Be sure the engine is cold, so that the PCM will tell the GPR to turn on. If the engine is hot, you won’t have as much time to check.
Locate the GPR – Its behind the fuel filter on top of the engine, a little bit toward the passenger side of the valley. There may be two relays there. If so, the rear one is the GPR. It will have two fairly large wires (yellow and brown) connected to one of the large posts.
With your multitmeter set to DC volts, and 15 V range (if not autoranging), clip the positive (red) lead to the output terminal (with yellow and brown wires connected), and the negative (black) lead to a good ground point (like the battery ground terminal or someplace metal directly on the engine block.)
Turn the key to ON (do not start)
If your GPR is good, it should click, and you’ll see 11 volts or so on your meter, then, depending on temperature, it will click off up to 2 minutes later. You should do this a couple of times to make sure it consistently makes the connection.
If you don’t get voltage with this test, confirm by retesting as follows.
Remove the two small wires from the smaller two of the four GPR terminals.
With jumper wires, apply voltage from the battery across the two small terminals. If your voltmeter now reads voltage on the output terminal, your GPR is OK, and your problem is in the PCM circuit that tells the GPR to activate.

To check Glow Plugs.
Remove the electrical connector on the inboard side of valve cover at the gasket. Press down on the top of the connector latch and pry gently with a screwdriver. Photo of disconnecting one and another Photo of it loose.
There will be 9 pins on the valve cover gasket where you removed the connector. The two pins furthest forward and the two pins furthest back are for your glow plugs.
With your multimeter set to resistance (ohms) and low range (single digits) if not autoranging, clip the negative (black) lead to a good ground point.
Probe each of the 4 outer pins individually with the positive (red) lead, noting the resistance. Good glow plugs will have a resistance between 0.6 and 2 ohms. If you get infinite resistance on any glow plug, that one is either bad or the connector under the valve cover has come loose.
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