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I am a bad 7.3 owner, I let my van sit too long, and it won't start. I am reasonably sure it is the batteries because of some obvious clues like dim cabin lights and the various beepers sound like they are drowning, if they come on at all. It was on a Battery Minder, but I guess it didn't work. The batteries are (checks notes) 8 years old now too. So, yeah, hopefully that is it.

I have a couple of battery tenders and one of them says the battery is hosed (red flashing "timed out" signal on starting charge). The dumber one is happy to try and charge.

The battery actually reads 11.8V with a multimeter, but the analog meter in the cockpit won't twitch.

The cool van owner would just install new batteries but I don't want to mess with getting to the second battery on the rail so I am hoping I can just start it and get it to a shop where they can do batteries and an oil change for me. Are any of the external jumper packs I see out there any good for starting a big engine like this? Even if there is something else wrong with the van, it might be nice to have a good one anyway.

Thanks in advance for any advice.

Mr. Not a Mechanic
 

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I think you're underestimating the starting requirements for a diesel engine w/Glow Plugs (we actually Need 2 batteries ;) )

So, no,,,, there's no "pak" that's gonna supply the 5-700Amps needed for very long. If you know anyone with a 2-battery Diesel around and you can connect a GOOD pair of jumper cables to it (after sitting awhile first - 10min at least connected) you stand a chance. BUT your "bad" batteries may be more than just unable to supply the needed current, they could also be consuming some of it too.

A couple of things to keep in mind;

Your computer needs to "see" a fairly high Cranking RPM (above 100, once it slows much, STOP) before it will trigger the IDM to fire the injectors. It will also require fairly high Voltage while cranking on the starter before it will do the same. So, you want to see, with your Voltmeter, No Lower than 9v AS you're trying to start (any less and you're just wasting your precious battery power...
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, that is very helpful. I didn't know that was how the start sequence worked.

I didn't think a magic jump box would work on this beast... but I had to try. :)

I have long suspected a weak starter on this thing too... it has always felt like it has started kind of slow even when these batteries were new.

Guess I have to man up and figure out how to get that side battery out! The last mechanic I talked to said it was a pain in the butt for him, so I have been leery of trying myself...
 

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I bought a Noco Genius Boost GB150 for mine. Haven't had to use it but obviously believe it would do the job. It's not cheap.
 

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I bought a Noco Genius Boost GB150 for mine. Haven't had to use it but obviously believe it would do the job. It's not cheap.
So for it to have any chance, you'd want to connect it to the batteries and Leave it there for 10-15 mins (surface charging your trucks existing batteries if they're good). I'm sure it would turn it over but,,, it better start pretty quickly ;)
 
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