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BEST advice for long sitting 7.3L IDI non turbo re-start, first cold start?

Discussion in '6.9L IH & 7.3L IDI Diesels' started by 8gitmusik1, Feb 9, 2019.

  1. 8gitmusik1

    8gitmusik1 Full Access Member

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    Hello and good day to ya'll!

    Best proceedure to "FIRST START" a long sitting 94-7.3 IDI-N/A?

    I'm starting this thread so myself and others can have a thread dedicated to "cold starts/first starts" of vehicles with engines that have been sitting for longer periods of time, and, how a person that is NOT a mechanic, but, who is mechanically inclined, should proceed with the STEP -BY -STEP process of safely re-starting a FORD 7.3L IDI Naturally Aspirated - DIESEL engine in this, following type of scenario.

    Lets say a person finds a good deal on a 1994 One Ton (E350) CARGO VAN that had a leaking radiator. The van is all original and the odometer read 320,000. And, lets add, that, due to finances, the owner parked the van while it still ran very well, intending to save the money up to purchase the expensive OEM radiator (average price for OEM brass and copper radiator for this application is $400-500).

    Then, life happened. A relationship with a woman ended, and that caused a separation of assets and property, and turned life "UPSIDE DOWN" so the owner of the van had to park the vehicle for several years, essentailly storing it under a carport till life and finances allowed him to revisit repairing the van.

    So, in a nutshell, if YOU had such a vehicle or purchased a vehicle for a good deal...i.e in this condition....

    With this information....

    Previously known to be great running and shifting running drivetrain and good to great, (minimal rust or corrosion anywhere on body and frame)......

    How would you proceed in the start up process?

    NOTE-

    1. The engine has had coolant in it and when recently drained showed some rusty colored water (very light slightly reddish, more than green) but ?.

    2. The oil doesnt seem to have any water or coolant in it.

    3. A NEW radiator and hoses has been bought. Fleet Charge precharged concentrate and distilled water has been obtained, as well as a Prestone flush kit, and Prestone flush treatment has been obtained also.

    4. Has good, newer glow plugs and glow plug relay.

    5. Has newer dual batteries.

    6. Oil will be drained and replaced with new Motorcraft 15-40 oil and Motorcraft oil filter will be installed.

    7. New FUEL filter will be installed, filled 50/50 with fresh diesel and Seafoam or Marvel Mystery Oil or Diesel Kleen, not sure which, what do you all suggest?

    Also:

    - I am not sure how to preceed with a coolant system flush if I don't, first, start the engine due to the original radiator having some visual white sediment/corrosion in the top of the fins when I visually inspect the fill cap area after removing the radiator cap.

    - Should I just fill up the original radiator with really clean, filtered WELL water and run it first before flushing everything and drain it several times just to get things, i.e. moving again? IDK how exactly is the safest or best method or way to proceed from here....

    - It seems like a good idea to me but, would YOU (anyone) suggest installing a new or remanufactured water pump in while the radiator is out?

    - Would you put anything, i.e. LUBRICANT of ANY KIND into the cylinder walls before the pistons start to move again for the FIRST time in a long time.

    - Would you change the Transmission fluid and filter as a preventitive measure after start up?

    - Would you drain and replace the gear oil in the rear end as a preventitive measure?

    - What other preventative first start up measures would you suggest or take to prevent any addition more costly mechanical problems later?

    If this were YOU, how would YOU proceed?

    Sent from my SM-T567V using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2019
  2. MrStretch

    MrStretch Registered User

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    Following.
     
  3. Macrobb

    Macrobb Full Access Member

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    I've pulled multiple IDIs out of the weeds. What I do is:
    1. Check the oil. Add if required, make sure it's not full of water.
    2. Make sure she's got coolant in her.
    3. Put some good batteries in and turn key on.
    If the glow plugs don't cycle right(99% chance for me), leave the key on(so the GPs cool down), pull out a can of ether and give it a couple seconds of spray into the air cleaner.
    4. Give her a crank and see what happens!

    If she doesn't fire after a few seconds, and I'm not getting smoke, check for fuel. If I am getting smoke, more ether and throttle and see what happens.

    Generally, this works just fine. Once she's started, then I can drive her onto a trailer to get home.

    Then, at that point:
    1. Change oil and filter.
    2. Check trans fluid, diff fluid, U-joints, carrier bearing, break fluid, top up clutch MC etc.
    3. Drive it a bit, see what's wrong and fix from there.

    Coolant gets changed for me when I have time, usually after making sure the rig is going to be driving and not sitting due to another issue(good coolant is expensive).
     
  4. Oledirtypearl86

    Oledirtypearl86 Full Access Member

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    So fo me when I bought lockjaw it hadn't even started in about a year what I did was check the oil it was a little low so I topped off with new 15w-40 then checked the water an that was full the gut I bought it from put a charger on the Batts the night before I jumped in cycled the plug and cranked I over an she fired up now I let it die for a few watching the gauges till it had been running fo about 3 minutes then pulled it on the trailer and let it idle till I was done chaining it down
     
  5. chris142

    chris142 Full Access Member

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    Don't change the oil and filter yet. Doing that will make it run longer with no oil than starting it with the old oil and filter.

    Old oil now is better than waiting for new oil. Once it's running and has oil pressure you can shut it down and change it.
     
  6. Knuckledragger

    Knuckledragger blowing chunks

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    Don't fuss with coolant yet. Change oil/ filter if you think it is needed, otherwise top it off. Check to see if GP relay works. Check for fuel. Diesel lasts for a very long time in a tank, so there is no need to mess with that unless you live in an area that is either VERY cold or prone to algae. Otherwise, crank it and hope for the best. You can run it for 5 minutes without coolant at idle, a little less if you intend to drive it.
     
  7. 8gitmusik1

    8gitmusik1 Full Access Member

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    Thanks KnuckleDragger,
    When I was a much younger man (sounds like a country song)
    I use to run apehangers on a shovelhead, some times the popo would see my arms above my shoulders so Id keep my triple trees a bit loose so I could knuckle dragg if I had to, lol
    I still havent got all my ducks in a bunch, on this ol van, but, I'm considering your advice as well. I appreciate it.....

    Sent from my SM-T567V using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2019

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