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Rav4.2 D4D Bad At Starting In Cold.

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Winter is here again and my Rav 4 is becoming a right PITA to start. It's recently (in the last 7 months) had a new Battery, new injectors and fuel filter change, so pretty sure I can rule all that out.

Is the D4D engine renowned for being a bad starter in cold weather?

Once it's started (usually takes a couple of tries and about 10 seconds of cranking) I can shut it down and it will fire up again straight away. Clutching at straws, but thinking it could be an Oil problem and thinking of chanhing to a lower viscosity Oil for the winter.

Any help much appreciated.

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What grade of Oil are you using? I use Mobil 1 ESP (5w-30) in my T-180 and she starts up every time. Or get a 0w-30. What fuel are you using? Hope not the Supermaket stuff? Have you clean the MAF and whats the air filter condition like?Try some Shell V-Power derv with a tin of BG244 to clean out the system, or some of these would be even better...

http://www.powerenha...ifier-lubricant

http://www.powerenha...ine-concentrate

http://www.powerenha...f---cat-cleaner

Just have a read of them all and see which one you think is best for you. Also use code "MPG" on checkout to get a discount...

Ps... Looks like that code no longer works now! it was an extra 15% off

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Have you tried waiting another 5 seconds after the glow plug light has gone out?

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Winter is here again and my Rav 4 is becoming a right PITA to start. It's recently (in the last 7 months) had a new battery, new injectors and fuel filter change, so pretty sure I can rule all that out.

Is the D4D engine renowned for being a bad starter in cold weather?

Once it's started (usually takes a couple of tries and about 10 seconds of cranking) I can shut it down and it will fire up again straight away. Clutching at straws, but thinking it could be an oil problem and thinking of chanhing to a lower viscosity oil for the winter.

Any help much appreciated.

10 seconds is long -- your Battery will be flat

check with all glow plugs and their relay

pay attention on diesel type (winter or summer )

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Have you tried waiting another 5 seconds after the glow plug light has gone out ?

This is good advice. The glow-plugs continue to operate after the light has gone out, and for longer at low temperatures. They keep going for a short while even after the engine fires up.

Even with premium fuel and everything working AOK, I find our D4D takes about twice as much cranking to start in winter as in summer. D4Ds never seem to fire up immediately, even with a warm engine on a hot day. Perhaps part of the design? PSA engines are quite different.

Chris

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I've tried waiting 30 seconds to see if that makes any difference, but it doesn't. I also noticed today that when it did finally start there was a bit of a funny smell, not sure if that's because of not enough fuel or too much fuel, but definitely a weird smell from the exhaust after start up.

It was -5 overnight last night and only -1 when I started it this morning and it took me 3 attempts and a lot of cranking to get it started. All of this cranking is probably what killed my last Battery! It really feels like a valve that is stuck (SCV?) because when it does finally kick into life it fires up nicely.

If it is the glow plugs, how much would i be looking at to change them? I might just try getting them done anyway. I live in the French Alps and temps can sometimes get down to -25 overnight, so really want to get to the bottom of this before the really cold temps arrive.

Cheers in advance,

LG

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The RAV glowplugs are very long, and quite expensive. It is possible to have them tested in situ (intercooler needs removing), and only to replace any one that is faulty. Even one dodgy glowplug will make starting quite difficult and lumpy.

Just to be sure it's not low Battery voltage, it might be worth leaving the Battery on charge overnight (8 hours), and then trying. Also check that the Battery terminal connections are clean and tight. (If you vaseline the terminals, only do this after cleaning them and putting on the clamps. A layer of gel doesn't make for good contact at all!) If possible, also try jump-starting the car (another vehicle, or another known good Battery) when the RAV is cold. If it starts well with a jump, then your Battery is not good (even if only 7 months old).

Chris

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Don't wait an extra 30 seconds as they will time out according to ambient temp. 5 would be worth a try. You need to follow Chris's advice above too.

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The Battery voltage is good and the voltage from the alternator is good. The Battery was only changed about 5 weeks ago. I'm actually an aircraft avionics technician/electrician, but have no interest in cars whatsoever and always just take it to the garage if it goes wrong. Until I got my RAV 4, I've always had really reliable cars, but this D4D engine just seems to blow goats.

I've tried waiting 5 seconds after the light goes out and it doesn't make any difference either.

Is testing the glow plugs as simple as getting access to them and checking the resistance across it? If so, can someone tell me what resistance to expect for a good one and what's involved in taking the intercooler off to get to them?

Cheers,

LG

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Here you go;

m_st_0001.pdf

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Removing the intercooler on top of the engine is very straightforward. Simply release the two large air hoses connected to it, and undo the 3 bolts (IIRC) holding it down. You'll see the glowplugs underneath, with heavy supply cables linking them. Remove the cables from the plug tops, and test the plugs individually.

Generally, Toyota's (Denso, I think) glowplugs are extremely reliable and long life, but they're still worth checking out.

When refitting the intercooler hoses, make sure they're a really snug fit: the turbo-boosted air pressure is considerable.

At least you're in the right trade (almost)!!

C.

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Winter is here again and my Rav 4 is becoming a right PITA to start. It's recently (in the last 7 months) had a new battery, new injectors and fuel filter change, so pretty sure I can rule all that out.

Is the D4D engine renowned for being a bad starter in cold weather?

Once it's started (usually takes a couple of tries and about 10 seconds of cranking) I can shut it down and it will fire up again straight away. Clutching at straws, but thinking it could be an oil problem and thinking of chanhing to a lower viscosity oil for the winter.

Any help much appreciated.

When I first got my 4.2 D4D about a year and a half ago I had the same problem as you...took about 3-5 turns of the key before she would turn over and thats after giving the glow plugs longer than usual! A mech mate of mine advised me to get a new Battery with a higher cranking power as diesels take a bit more 'umph' to turn that heavy flywheel especially when cold! I told him there was a Battery on now that was under a year old but he said it does'nt matter as batteries can start to go at anytime!

After a bit of research and price hunting I opted for a VARTA G8 with 830 cranking power (CCA)...it fits perfectly onto the tray of the 4.2 D4D! I paid £85 from this place in Stockport and collected myself...this proved to be the answer to my problem and a great buy as my motor now turns over on the first key turn (warm or cold)......you can just feel that extra kick from this quality, powerful, high cranking Battery!...

Hope this helps?.........Steve

http://www.advancedb...artablueg8.html

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...with 830 cranking power... Good recommendation!

This is certainly the way to go in cold weather. Diesels require a huge Battery capability in cold weather:

- cranking a cold engine, with cold Oil (of any grade)

- overcoming a high compression ratio (more than twice that of a petrol engine)

- having enough current delivery power to both crank engine AND simultaneously maintain a decent voltage at the glow-plugs

. . .and all this with any conventional Battery's output being less than optimum when it's cold.

So, go for an absolute minimum of 600A CCA (cold cranking amperage), and preferably 700 or 800+. Cost is little extra.

Also, make sure unnecessary electrical loads (eg headlights, foglights, blowers, HRWs etc) are OFF when starting. Many vehicles inhibit some of these anyway before the engine fires up (and the alternator outputs).

Chris

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