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Cold Starting

Discussion in 'Ford Trucks' started by speotter, Jan 27, 2010.

  1. speotter

    speotter Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    I just recently started having problems starting my 6.0 in my Excursion. The engine seems to be cold (outside air a balmy 41 degrees). If I wait for the pre-heater light to go away, crank it, maybe one or no cylinders fire and kick over. I turn off the ignition and try again, it turns over a little more, until after about 10 times it actually starts (and sounds really bad, as in in a noisy cold engine).

    After warming up, no problem starting through out the day. Could it be that my pre-heater is out? How hard is that to change?

    Other possible problems? Car has been virtually maintenance free and has only a measly 98k on it.

    Any ideas would be appreciated, as I am a diesel novice.

    Southern California - Irvine (not exactly cold country)
  2. tuney443

    tuney443 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,847

    I'm a Dmax guy but I know stuff about diesels.I'm sure some PS guys will speak up soon enough but a simple test would be to see if your ammeter/volt meter on your cluster is registering some serious draw while you're engaging with the key your pre heater and or glow plugs.If it is,that's a good thing--after it starts you should see a quick rise of the needle to normal or slightly beyond to regain lost power.This is just a starting point though---you could have other issues also such as fuel delivery problems to your injectors, usually caused by a dirty fuel filter.
  3. plowguy43

    plowguy43 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,281

    over at the dieselstop.com there was a guy that had similar issues to yours. He ended up removing a throttle butterfly and having a reflash done by Ford. I don't know the details but check it out over there. It was in the 6.0 diesel section. Good luck.
  4. speotter

    speotter Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    Unfortunately, Ford in its wisdom didn't include a voltmeter in its gage cluster in my 2003 Excursion. It has been raining like a banshee here in socal, so I did fill the tank, to try to avoid condensation. I have not used any tank additives to get rid of potential water. But that doesn't seem to me to explain why it is running bad only when it is cold. Once it is warm it starts as usual.

  5. ajslands

    ajslands 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,033

    i used to have this problem, started plugging it in and putting anti gel in and i dont have it anymore
  6. damian

    damian Senior Member
    Messages: 330

    you may have a glow plug problem,although this usually throws an engine light because it is monitored by the ecm for emissions reasons in the 6.0,i would plug in the block heater and see how it starts,if it starts ok plugged in take a good hard look at the glow plug system.i also run a synthetic 5-40 ci-4 cj-4 motor oil in cold weather,it makes a huge difference in cold start and run.an intermittent failed FICM will also cause this problem.unfortunately,6.0 engines are way too expensive and complex to backyard guess repair.you need to plug into it check codes,examine the data:ficm voltage,injection pressure,cam and crank sensor signals etc.find a good 6.0 guy you can work with.good luck.
  7. SteveR

    SteveR Senior Member
    Messages: 252

    sounds like it may be a glow plug relay. Does the wait to start light stay on for a longer time?? It is an easy check with a test light. Looks like a starter solenoid on the top of the motor turn on the ignition and check output on the small wires. Be sure you get the right one one is for the air heater. I think the glow plug one in the back one. Sorry I missed the 6.0 part I was talking 7.3 may not be the same
  8. daninline

    daninline Senior Member
    Messages: 430

    I just had this problem and when it got colder it got real bad, the problem was the FICM Fuel Injection Control Module.

    It's putting out too low of a voltage for the injectors when cold, it should be 48 volts.
    in the moring when it's cold and you turn the key on is the buzz sound weak or very strong.

    I took my FICM out opened it up did some re-soldering to some bad points and reinstalled the FICM and the truck starts up great. the other day it was about 0F out and the truck started right up.
    This is a common issue, if not fixed over time it could hurt your injectors, also sometimes if you run real low on voltage it can also damage the computer and then it would need a few parts to get it back up and working.
    The best part about fixing it is you won't have to have anything reflashed :D

    The FICM is on the drivers side valve cover if you want to test it or remove it you will need to move over the coolant overflow to get to the bolts, about a 20 install and removel.
    If you need some more help let me know.
    My truck has 187,000 miles on it.
  9. Sno What

    Sno What Member
    from CT
    Messages: 80

    I just had this problem with my 05 6.0 Excusion. There is a TSB for it. They reflashed the computer and replaced a couple of parts. From the repair slip "ran oasis found TSB 09 24 3"