3b hard start, white smoke

Joined
May 4, 2008
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Northwest Washington
I have a 1985 bj60 I could use help with, motor rebuilt 4 years ago by certified diesel tech (jonathan Hebden, who was great). Has about 70k kilos on the rebuild, turbo but only run 8-12 lbs of boost, egts below a 1000. I’ve read a lot on here, And John with Radd cruisers has been a huge help Great guy and compan. (Thank you John!)

sorry this long!

It was basically a daily driver till this last winter. Started to notice really hard starts in the winter, but the block heater was bad, and it was around 0- -15 (Fahrenheit)
Im finally getting around to working on it this summer.
The head did have a hairline crack approx. 3mm when the motor was rebuilt, new precups installed though. I had replaced the head gasket with a mls one about 10k after the rebuild, the fiber Toyota one blew, but no problems since, that was 4 years ago and the small crack hadn’t changed.


Currently it will not start without giving it a lot of gas, and then runs rough and lots of white smoke for 5-10 minutes, not blue, and not sweet smelling, will smoke a little even at operating temp. It has normal power while driving. No coolant in oil or vice versa, I recently replaced the block heater so not sure if losing coolant but I don’t think so.

It can be at operating temp, and 95 degrees outside and if I let it sit even for 5 minutes it will start but smoke and run rough with white smoke again, but doesn’t last as long.

Things I have checked:

The glow system is working, I have a Wilson switch and getting power to glow plugs, have put in new glow plugs just in case, although others tested fine. Even with power to them it doesn’t change the hard starting.

I have replaced the hand primer with another new bosch one, new fuel filter, put new diesel in the tank and treated, replaced fuel filter, replaced little tube at back of fuel return rail that can let in air occas, new diaphragm, cleaned all grounds, bled the injectors probably a dozen or more times, checked the water separator several times, look for leaks around the injection pump and back to the fuel tank. I have clear line going from the fuel hardline to the injection pump, and hadn’t seen any air bubbles.

Most recently I pulled the injectors from a spare 3b and swapped them out, doing the full bleeding etc again with no changes. I will send a set off to get rebuilt though.

The one thing I noticed was that the clear fuel line from the hardline to the injection pump, after I swapped the injectors, it would get little bubbles of air approx. every minute for a while that would come from the pump back up the fuel line, this has since stopped, but there remains a pocket of unchanging air in that fuel line, I let it idle at 1500 rpms and it didn’t change and no new bubbles. I don’t know the name of the thing that has the bosch hand primer on the side of the injection pump, but could something be wrong there, letting minuscule amounts of air causing all this?

I will try to attach a file showing what it sounds like when hot and idling.

I have not checked the compression, but ordered a diesel compression tester, I do not want to pull the head if at all possible but I am thinking that is unfortunately next.

Any other ideas or help?
 
Joined
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Any coolant consumption?
 
Joined
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Location
Northwest Washington
I haven’t driven it much since replacing the block heater, but not that I can tell?
 
Joined
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Messages
348
Location
Northwest Washington
This is a video of when it’s already warmed up, you can hear it missing and the exhaust sound. It’s much worse when first starting obviously, will barely start, clouds of white smoke, runs really rough etc

 
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Any air bubbles visible coming up through the radiator?
 

brownbear

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It's a glow issue I feel. Even though you have done a lot of work on it. Sometimes new plugs can be bad too.

When I do not glow long enough I get the same results. How many seconds are you glowing for? When I hold my wilson switch it usually for 15-20 seconds. Then I start and re-glow as needed till it starts levelling off.

You may also have low compression on a cylinder. When it's warm it's evident. You may need to do a compression check to see.
 

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