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Starting a diesel after 3 years on the hard


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Volvo Penta 2003 (diesel) been sitting dormant for 3 years. Besides the usual oil and filter change, any suggestions on things to be done before attempting to start? 

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well since the rings in the cylinders aren't lubricated or moved in three years they maybe "attached"   when we rebuilt bike engines, we'd spray some lubricant into the spark plug holes and let soak a couple of days and then moved the cylinders by hand with a large tourque wrench to get them moving... 

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18 minutes ago, Grande Mastere Dreade said:

well since the rings in the cylinders aren't lubricated or moved in three years they maybe "attached"   when we rebuilt bike engines, we'd spray some lubricant into the spark plug holes and let soak a couple of days and then moved the cylinders by hand with a large tourque wrench to get them moving... 

Yeah, that’s my main worry. 
Can’t seem to find any spark plugs though :o

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2 hours ago, Sean said:

Yeah, that’s my main worry. 
Can’t seem to find any spark plugs though :o

That's because you've got one of them fancy European diesels. 

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If you can turn the crank with a wrench on the damper pulley, it isn't rusted much or at all. 3 years isn't really very long (depends on conditions of course). If you have the option I would spin it with the starter while holding the fuel shutoff closed until oil pressure is achieved. If you can't turn it with a wrench, then you got problems. Light oil in the injector holes, soak, try to work it loose - but you still got problems. 

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May as well change the coolant once you get it running. The anti corrosives will be all used up. Pencil zinc in the cooling system?

Check the air cleaner for mud dauber wasp nests. Don't ask.

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Belts, pumps, fluids, filters, heat exchanger core, mixing elbow, thermostat.

Hoses, depending on state from a visual.

I did all that once on a Perkins 4107 that had been dormant for at least 7 years and it fired right up and chugged like a London taxi.

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If it's not a pain pull the injectors and clean, put a small amount  of oil in each cylinder, or just some clean diesel.  Pull the valve cover off and make sure you don't have corrosion on anything valve stems etc.  Drizzle some oil around the top of rocker gear.  Roll the engine by hand slowly and make sure everything is moving freely. Put the injectors back in bleed the fuel system.  All the other maintenance above is spot on.

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Don't pull the injectors on that engine (all 2001, 2002, 2003 models) unless you are prepared to pull the head!  They use a copper crush sleeve thing that seals as you tighten down the injector, and on removal often will stick and unseal lets coolant into the cylinder, impossible nearly to get it to seal again.  Reinstalling the bushing requires specialized tooling and such; basically means you are pulling the head for a rebuild.

As for sitting.. three years is nothing.  Your exhaust elbow is always suspect.  Check the condition of the coolant, maybe drain flush and fill.  Hand crank the engine over a couple times.  The rubber grommets on the coolant tubes on these are a problematic area that might fail.  Water pump seals.. watch em.  Raw water impeller- change as usual.

 

Here is a snapshot of what is involved in resealing the sleeve:

injectortool.png

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Guy asks question and typical forum answers range from full on freak out virtual rebuild to well.. my advice for example which is do fuck all....

First its a diesel, thats about 90% success right there. Second its on the hard, under an engine cover inside a boat so not much weather to worry about. Heres an example, once upon a time as a young guy I came across a 45 Chev 1.5 ton truck at an abandoned timber yard, it had a pre blueflame dipper 6 in it and it was pretty rooted to look at. Tires deflated, rust, animals etc but we got a battery think it was 6v? and cleaned the points checked the oil (still there) and started cranking. The starter button was on the footwell, anyway after 20 odd years of sitting and rotting the thing fired up and long story short I drove it with its crash gearbox and no brakes about 50 miles over backroads to the farm.

Ive done the same with an old International bulldozer about the size of a D-8, scary I tell ya,. plus any number of old heaps of shit that have been sitting. Diesels are tough as, now Im not saying it wouldnt be a good idea to change fluids and filters etc but if it was running when it stopped then it will run now with very little effort.

good luck :)  

 

 

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One thing I would recommend is to change the oil before you try to start it. I've seen used diesel oil gel up even in moderate temps after just a few months of sitting.

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Don’t be impatient and dumb like me.

 

I removed my glow plugs and squirted oil in there after a 3 year hiatus.  Waited a bit then turned engine by hand.   Went great almost a whole revolution then stopped dead,  valve stuck shut.  I thought,  it’s a big strong diesel and I’m a little wimp,  so i pushed hard with the breaker bar on the crankshaft and...  ping!   Broke a rocker arm.   
 

Take it easy and open up your valve cover if things don’t feel right.

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Mine sat on the hard for 6 years (4JHTE). It needed a start battery. Replaced the coolant, did an oil change, started on the first crank.

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