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Author Topic: Any cold weather starting advice?  (Read 4827 times)
Paladin
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« Reply #15 on: November 11, 2011, 08:53:35 AM »

I keep a battery maintainer on the batteries and before I start in cold weather I plug in the block heater for at least two hours depending on how cold it is. After that the engine comes to life just about as easily as in warm weather unless it's really, really cold. Once started I let the engine warm up a little bit more before I do anything more. Get the fluids warmed up and flowing nicely.......  

I think I've only had to crank it twice or more a couple of times with the block heater on.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2011, 08:56:21 AM by Paladin » Logged

'75 MC-8   'Event Horizon'
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bevans6
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« Reply #16 on: November 11, 2011, 10:22:00 AM »

When I've been boondocking on sub=freezing mornings I find I get all the help I need by running my generator for a hour with the block heater plugged in to it.  Start gen, plug it, make coffee, eat breakfast, do dishes, have shower, and ready to leave...

Brian
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« Reply #17 on: November 11, 2011, 02:22:22 PM »

When I've been boondocking on sub=freezing mornings I find I get all the help I need by running my generator for a hour with the block heater plugged in to it.  Start gen, plug it, make coffee, eat breakfast, do dishes, have shower, and ready to leave...

Brian

  Yeah, but is your Genny diesel too? lol.
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Joe Camper
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« Reply #18 on: November 11, 2011, 03:37:36 PM »

Genny has glow plugs.

I have experimented with ours starting it at zero just to see if it would and it can.

It didnt like it and I will not do that again just to see but now I know I can if I have to.
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buswarrior
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« Reply #19 on: November 11, 2011, 06:28:37 PM »

Glow plugs, a great invention, and have you checked yours?

Another preventive maintenance item, put the ohm meter to them, keep the wiring to them in tip top shape, test to be sure the power gets to them.

I have a 15K Onan diesel unit, that I care for, circa 1990, that I have to re-wire the plugs to the remote controls as the inside of the multi-wire connector has turned horribly green.

It was a lack of glow plug power that got me searching around...

On all of your electrical connections, you want them protected against corrosion. Every joint I take apart, work on, or build, gets sprayed now with a migrating lubricating spray:

one of the Krown products : http://krown.com/#products/aerosol/ 

or the one I like, Termin8R :
http://www.spectraproducts.ca/Products/Termin8R/tabid/73/Default.aspx

Gets into the connections and wires in ways that dielectric grease simply cannot, with far less effort or time.

Cold weather starting is heavy on the electric side being in top shape, right down to the low amperage signal wires passing good current to the relays.

happy coaching!
buswarrior


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luvrbus
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« Reply #20 on: November 11, 2011, 06:50:36 PM »

A air intake glow plug type heater is not a bad way to go on a DD either they heat the air before entering the engine

good luck
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Bill B /bus
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« Reply #21 on: November 11, 2011, 08:09:38 PM »

In all your discussions and hints nobody has mentioned winter fuel. That is diesel fuel, #2 oil mixed with up to 50% with #1 (kerosene). If you don't have a winter fuel blend in the tank  then somewhere around the 0-10F that waxing will start and your filter will plug.  So the trick is to fill your tank when the fuel blend is a winter blend. Normally around the middle of October or later.

Picture a trucker hauling produce north from Florida. Last fuel stop in South Carolina. Entering Maine at oh dark thirty and below zero and goes slower and slower until he's parked on the shoulder. Filter change and the 911 treatment to get him going. Plus all he had was a light weight jacket for outside.

Bill
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« Reply #22 on: November 11, 2011, 08:18:47 PM »

That same southern trucker who thought there was money in running north,

besides no decent coat, or gloves, or hat,

also has only water in his radiator...

happy coaching!
buswarrior

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eagle19952
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« Reply #23 on: November 11, 2011, 11:30:55 PM »

weed burner if necessary.....An Alaskan's best friend.
I would add one more thing...4 each 2 foot sections of 4 inch hvy guage stove pipe and a 90* elbow, keeps the fire away from the oil and directs the heat where its needed AND at -40* it is way cheaper and faster than a block heater and electricity @ 22-40 cents a kw....course a little cardboard of wind block will make it just that much more efficient.
ESPECIALLY if your genny fails.......
Good Luck.
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RJ
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« Reply #24 on: November 12, 2011, 03:43:55 AM »

Jon -

Lots of good suggestions here.  I'll add a few more.

Holding the fuel lever in the stop position is more difficult on your MCI - you've got to be extra careful you don't get tangled up in the cooling blower belt.

Don't start it if you're not going to drive it.  Diesels cool when they idle.

If you do take it for a drive, make it long enough for all the various fluids to thoroughly warm up.

If you do take it for a drive, do so as soon as the air pressure comes up.  Use the fast idle to speed up the process.

FWIW & HTH. . .

 Wink

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RJ Long
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« Reply #25 on: November 12, 2011, 04:52:53 AM »

 -40*F in Alaska? I keep telling people Minnesota is as cold as Alaska but they wont believe me. I recorded -44*F once on a digital thermometer just North of Minneapolis, which likely wasn't the coldest I had ever experienced up there (grew up in Duluth!). The coldest it gets here is about zero and it doesn't last long. Thats still colder than I would like, but its a compromise I can live with.

  No one in business up in Minnesota doesn't plug in their diesels at night, or keep them in a warm building unless their idiots. Plugged in they will spin over like a warm summer day. Oil pressure comes up instantly, its just way, way better for the engine.

  Cranking a diesel (or gas) engine up cold at the bottom of their ability to start is brutal. As soon as the engine lights off the piston is heated in less than a minute to over 1000*F inside an ice cold liner. The scuffing is incredible. If you've ever had real cold engines start and quit and be hard to turn over for a few minutes, its often from seizure of the pistons in the cylinders.


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« Reply #26 on: November 12, 2011, 05:07:41 AM »

Entering Maine at oh dark thirty and below zero and goes slower and slower until he's parked on the shoulder. Plus all he had was a light weight jacket for outside.

Bill

  My Dad worked with a guy at the Duluth AFB who kept working outside with only a light hat. He came in the hut one day, and when he rubbed his ears the bottoms snapped off. He knew another guy from the base who froze to death when his car quit and he tried walking. They found him less than a 1/4 mile from his car. I knew a guy some years ago who did the same, he was found less than 300 feet from his car. A girl my Nephew went to school with got off the Bus at the wrong stop and decided to walk home with only a pair of loafers on her feet. She had them amputated that evening. Cold can and will kill you. I was always amazed at how lackadaisical people were running around in the cold. Girls think -30*F is a day to be a fashion model, Macho guys think a light jacket is good enough. You need to prepare. My flight instructor said always dress like you might have to walk ten miles through the woods. 
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demodriver
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« Reply #27 on: November 12, 2011, 05:34:04 AM »

where did you get fuel at in the eagle?  Certain brand of fuels IMO will make a diesel start harder. 

Obviously I never started the eagle when it was this cold out but it hasnt ever smoked like you mentioned.   Have you added any oil to it? If so what? 

Eric
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« Reply #28 on: November 13, 2011, 05:56:58 AM »

Eric, I filled up at Flying J on the SW side of Indy and have not added oil yet (level looks good). I found the fuel lever on the MCI, but I am talking about the Eagle. I know where it should be, but still looking. Found a valve to shoot starting fluid in, that worked well. Testing the block heater plug to see if it's working. Weather jumped back up into the high 50s, so it starting great again!

Eric, Do you know when it had it's last tune-up and last oil change? Does good on MPG so not too worried.
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« Reply #29 on: November 13, 2011, 07:47:17 AM »

IF I remember right the oil change papers from russlers truck service in Marion IN are in the folder of paper work. The oil is probably old and could stand to be changed tho.
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