97 7.3 unknown engine problem - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 01-10-2014, 10:27 PM
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97 7.3 unknown engine problem

Hello all,
I have an obs 7.3 with a serious engine problem.
Last year around this time, i was driving down the road and when i pulled into a parking lot it just shut down for no reason. the glow plug controller fuse was blown, and after replacing it, there was smoke coming from the right side band of wires on the valve covers when i turned the key on. Trying to start the engine proved unsuccessful so i had it towed to my house. I read forums of others with a similar problem (minus the smoke coming from the wire band (i probably sound like a jackass saying wireband as i do not know the technical name for it)) and it sounded like the CPS sensor could be bad since the truck would turn over but not start. I know that i replaced the glow plug timer before reading anything about CPS sensor, and if i remember right, that did make the wires stop smoking, smoldering, whatever they were doing. I replaced the CPS sensor and it did not solve anything. I called a friend of mine who is a diesel mechanic working for cummins, but has had several 7.3s. he came out, made sure it was getting fuel, checked some other things, and eventually tried to start it with the help of ether. nothing he did helped so i took it to another friend who is a diesel mechanic, he put it on his scanner and it gave a code for a CPS sensor, so we replaced the one i bought from an auto parts store with an original unit from a different engine. It still would not start. He tried starting it with the help of ether but said that its only safe to do so if you try to start it without letting the glow plugs warm up. When he did this it actually sounded like it was almost trying to start, but still wouldnt. after this mechanic was out of answers i took it to one more, who said that it sounded like the motor was wanting to lock up. It is now sitting in my driveway because i have so much money in this truck and simply do not have the money to rebuild the engine right now. The last mechanic that tried to diagnose the problem said that spraying ether into the motor could have screwed it up. I have well over ten thousand in this truck and payed less than half that for it. I even spent 3300 on a trans rebuild a month before it quit! I am so disgusted and if any of you fellow ford lovers could offer me any advice on what could be wrong, if maybe theres something i could do without having to rebuild the engine, it would be greatly appreciated. If i absolutely have to ill save the money and do what i gotta do but i really dont want to if theres something else i can do.
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:26 PM
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During the cranking is there smoke coming from the tailpipe? have you looked at the wires that were smoking? Are they melted? If they are the wires I think you're talking about, they run to the glow plugs and injectors.
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:32 PM
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It sounds like you need to check the valave cover harnesses and gaskets. The gaskets contain the wiring to the injectors and glow plugs and are known to go bad.
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:34 PM
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Wow, quite the ride there.

Lets start from the beginning here.

The fuse id imagine you are talking about is the number 22 maxi fuse. It controls the IDM relay, the PCM relay, as well as the glow plugs. Very important fuse. Check it constantly through out this.

Those wires that are smoking. You need to peel the wire loom off and see what damage is done. Pictures would help us a lot.

When turning over does the tachometer bounce at all? if so that is a sign of a good CPS. But if it doesnt move that isnt always a sign of a bad one so be weary of that

I suggest seeing what wires were damaged and we can go from there
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Old 01-13-2014, 12:13 AM
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and i'll add that it's very unlikely that you need an engine rebuild. you have an electrical problem
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Old 01-13-2014, 07:10 PM
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The second mechanic i took it to was halfway competent and he said he ran the wires but ill check again. I have checked these things but its been a while. the truck actually stopped running around this time last year. Ill check all these things, open up the band of wires take pictures and ill post tomorrow afternoon.
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Old 01-13-2014, 07:54 PM
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