Intermittent no start, dead batteries

Feb 4, 2005
Alexandria, VA
What’s up gents? I’m having some issues with my 1993 KZJ78 Prado, 1KZ-TE with a 12v dual battery setup. Been dealing with hard start or no start over the last few days. Drove from VA to NC for thanksgiving last week. Morning after the long drive, started up and made a quick 1 mi trip up the road. Tried starting up about an hour later and no dice. Cranked in about 10 sec bursts for a few minutes and finally she sputtered to life, very hard start. Ran for about 20 mins while I checked everything I could think of; loose wires, connections, battery terminals, etc. Couldn't find any issues. Ran a bottle of diesel additive in case it was fuel related. From that point last Thursday through yesterday, she’s been a little sluggish on startup but no big issues. Then this morning she didn’t want to start. Cranked again in 10 sec bursts until the batteries/starter were barely turning the motor. No start. I brought the batteries to an auto parts store, both tested good but with low charge. They’re going to charge them overnight.

I plan to try to start tomorrow with a fresh charge and test the alternator if I can get it running. What else can I be looking for? I have plenty of LC experience but this is my first diesel, could definitely use some help here. Thanks!

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