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6.5 Diesel won't start

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by HoneyDooYrdWrk, Dec 7, 2006.

  1. HoneyDooYrdWrk

    HoneyDooYrdWrk Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    it"s about -20 C out up ere in winnipeg and my block heater isn't working,i just bought the truck this summer and this is thecoldest its been sofar i found out the hard way thismorning that my truck doesnt like it this cold (neither do i) and my block heater isnt working, it has glow plugs and i have been told by many people not to use either on a "glowplug starting system" does anyone have any tricks to getting the old girl going.

    p.s. the truck is a 96 k2500 with a 6.5 turbo any tricks or ideas are greatly apreciated.

    thanks again
  2. Rampart Ranger

    Rampart Ranger Senior Member
    Messages: 165

    My experience with the 6.5 is that it is best to park inside a heated garage, cycle glow plugs for 30-60 seconds.

    If you must park outside, get an engine heater that works and leave her plugged in continuously below 40F. Cycle glow plugs 60-90 seconds.

    Wire your glow plug relay to a push on, release off button switch. Treat your fuel. DO NOT USE ETHER except in extreme case - and NEVER if you have air preheat.

    We have had this cold start experience with all GM diesels, and frankly the PowerStroke cold start is only slightly better (3 hr plug in, no need for aftermarket glow plug switch).

    Diesels have no spark to ignite fuel. Heat from compression inside the combustion chamber is the ignition method. Cold air, cold fuel, cold oil, cold cylinders combine to try to defeat cold starts. Nature of the beast!
  3. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    First time that happened to me, it took a week to get it started. I don't know if it will work for you, but I used finally used a propane heater aimed under the engine inside a garage for about two hours. Finally started. After that, I made sure to plug it in every night it would get below about 40 degrees.
  4. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    Got to heat up the engine....

    Had a 6.2 the same thing...A quick answer might be hit your parts store for a dip stick heater or they have a magnetic heater that sticks to the bottom of your oil pan...You need to warm up your block for starters.Treat your fuel ,need to get that to flow.A construction torpedo heater pointed at the oil pan has worked in the past.I had to put a tarp over the cab to hold in some of the heat.lol Oh ya A Good charge on your batteries.....
    As far as preventing the cold start issues......I always treated my fuel with Power service conditioner every tank.If your glow plug relay isnt cycling properly then going to the push button switch is a good option.Your not supposed to hold the switch in longer then 10 seconds or you may burn out the plugs.I've been told the GM glowplugs are only good for 80,000miles and to replace them at 80K.....Another thing that I found that worked for me was that I ran Rotella Synthetic15-40 engine oil.The engine turned over faster when cold which helps. Always have a good fuel filter on there....Back to the block heater, on one of my old plow trucks with a Detroit I had a water heater that ran in the heater lines that circulated the hot water threw the block when plugged in.That maybe a good answer??????
    Best of luck nothing worse than a cold diesel...
  5. snowsniper1

    snowsniper1 Senior Member
    Messages: 240

    park it inside a heated area if not a opption get the block heater working
  6. Toolman Taylor

    Toolman Taylor Junior Member
    Messages: 25

    Throw a tarp or parachute over the truck and put a heater under it - just don't leave it unattended. It should fire up in a couple hours. When replacing your block heater make sure you specify a 1000W and not a standard 600W. It's not too bad to change - you can go in through your driver's side wheel well. Good luck!

    P.S. It wouldn't hurt to check and make sure ALL your glow plugs are working.
  7. Bruce'sEx

    Bruce'sEx Senior Member
    Messages: 873

    Have two trucks with the 6.5 in them, the block heater is more then enough, get that fixed is the best advice I can give, well not really parking in heat is the best. but the block heater even if you just turn it on for 40-60 mins before you want to start the truck, seems to work fine for us.

    and Toolmans suggestion to check the glow plugs is a good idea, they do go, and will make it hard to start.
  8. PLOWMAN45

    PLOWMAN45 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,951

    alot of people i know put 1 gallon of preium gas to diesel i guess it cheaper then additve to keep it thin
  9. yzf1000_rider

    yzf1000_rider Senior Member
    Messages: 147

    I Have Heard That In Diesels With Glow Plugs You Can Use Wd-40 As A Starting Aid. Not Sure If Its True Or Not Someone On Here Will Be Able To Answer That For Me And You Iam Sure
  10. PLOWMAN45

    PLOWMAN45 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,951

    id prob get the block heater fixed
  11. bbahun

    bbahun Junior Member
    from OHIO
    Messages: 7

    I have had several 6.5 TD and all started with the glow plugs down to about 15 degrees F without any problems at all. I did replace the glow plugs on one of my trucks at about 90k and it made a tremendouse difference. I would not put any gas in with my diesel fuel. I would suggest using a synthetic motor oil in the engine and standyne fuel additive in the fuel. Good batteries and a good starter is a must for cold starts in a diesel. The faster you can get the engine to crank the more heat is generated in the cyclinders which causes it to fire. When you do get your block heater fixed I always used a timer(the type you get at the harware store for house lighting) and would set it so that it would turn the block heater on 3hrs before I would need the truck. No need to have it pluged in all night unless you own stock in your local power company. Go to thedieselplace.com for more info.

    RP AUTO REPAIR Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    Use A Antigel And Go To A Local Napa They Sell A Heater That Splices Into The Lower Rad Hose Works Great! Easy To Install
  13. HoneyDooYrdWrk

    HoneyDooYrdWrk Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    thanks for all the good suggestions. i finally got it going the next day after i crawled under it to put a new block heater in it and put a new starter in it ( when i put the block heater in and got the engine warm the starter just kept spinng out ) when i went for my last oi change i put synthetic in it and checked all my glow plugs and actually checked everything else exept the block heater. but any way thanks for all the suggestions and help.

    p.s. i would love to put it in my garrage but the truck is an ext cab, long box and it doesnt quite fit (which sucks)

    Thanks again
  14. mrbrickman

    mrbrickman Senior Member
    from montana
    Messages: 138

    sucks, yeah when the batteries become low the starter will draw tons of amps and stick the selonoid on, when you notice the batteries getting low, stop cranking and put them on charge or at least losen both the negatives or positives so you can pull them off real quick if youve got to.

    when its cold i use wd40 .......just gotta do it while someone cranks and be doing it right into the intake or into the air duct close as poss to the turbo, its not as flammible as the starting fluid and the oil will do the cylinders good

    and btw, please please, send some cold weather and snow down this way