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Cold start difficulty
#1
M59 2004 2.0 hdi Berlingo

I have owned this Berlingo for 13 years, it was always an excellent starter until January this year when it really struggled to start each day and ended up running the battery flat. Diagnosis by the RAC was a worn-out battery (5yrs old) and two glow plugs not working. I replaced the battery and changed all four glow plugs, the car then started fine all this year up until a couple of weeks ago with the onset of cold weather. Now the car does start, but only after several seconds of cranking every morning. Once it has started, the car runs fine.

I have tested the resistance of the glow plugs and all are fine and the battery is still healthy.

I have noticed that when running the primer bulb squashes in and stays like that until the engine is turned off. I don't know if that is normal or indicative of the starting issue or indicative of something else?

Also my electronics malfunctioned in the Summer, which has left me with no central locking, so maybe the starting problem is linked to that?

Any helpful advice would be greatly appreciated.
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#2
I would check the glow plugs again and think about changing the fuel filter.

Put a test lamp on the glow plugs to see they are getting power.
2010 B9 red XTR w a v. 
2001 1.9d DW8B white  Berlingo  
2005 2.l green Berlingo
2001 1.9d DW8B white  Berlingo 
berlingo 1.4 red multispace
1993 xud 1.9 red partner
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#3
+1 for the fuel filter, the bulb staying flat suggests some kind of fuel restriction to me. The HDi engines can start without glowplugs except in extreme cold, the engine will probably run a bit rough until warm though as the glowplugs provide some kind of smoothing.
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#4
(01-12-2021, 07:59 AM)brodfather11 Wrote:  I would check the glow plugs again and think about changing the fuel filter.

Put a test lamp on the glow plugs to see they are getting power.

I tested the power to the glow plugs this morning, outside temp was 9 deg C, the wife turned the key while I held the multimeter on the glow plug and neg battery, I heard the relay click, but registered no power to the glow plug. Tried the same ten minutes later on a different glow plug with the same result. I'll try again tomorrow morning when the outside temp is due to be about 2 deg C.

I will order a new fuel filter, I fitted the last one just over two years ago with 6,000 miles done since then.
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#5
(01-12-2021, 09:48 AM)cancunia Wrote:  +1 for the fuel filter, the bulb staying flat suggests some kind of fuel restriction to me. The HDi engines can start without glowplugs except in extreme cold, the engine will probably run a bit rough until warm though as the glowplugs provide some kind of smoothing.

Yes, I'm going to change the fuel filter. Also thanks for the info that HDi engines can start without glowplugs, it might be that no power is getting to the glow plugs. I tested these 10 month old plugs for resistance and they are all good.
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#6
(01-12-2021, 11:26 AM)FadedRedBerlingo Wrote:  
(01-12-2021, 09:48 AM)cancunia Wrote:  +1 for the fuel filter, the bulb staying flat suggests some kind of fuel restriction to me. The HDi engines can start without glowplugs except in extreme cold, the engine will probably run a bit rough until warm though as the glowplugs provide some kind of smoothing.

Yes, I'm going to change the fuel filter. Also thanks for the info that HDi engines can start without glowplugs, it might be that no power is getting to the glow plugs. I tested these 10 month old plugs for resistance and they are all good.

IIRC it's unlikely that the glowplugs will activate unless the outside temp is at or below 5 deg C, but I may be thinking about the indicator in the instrument panel, so could be wrong.
There's a post on here somewhere about wiring a light bulb in parallel with the glowplugs to see when / how long they're active
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#7
Here is the original jj9's post about the operation of the glowplugs and the pre-heat, post-heat and duration of the glow plugs. I think the numbers might be related to 1.6HDi, but it should not be too different than the 2.0.

https://www.berlingoforum.com/thread-167...#pid107632
smile, you are alive!
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#8
(01-12-2021, 01:45 PM)saskak Wrote:  Here is the original jj9's post about the operation of the glowplugs and the pre-heat, post-heat and duration of the glow plugs. I think the numbers might be related to 1.6HDi, but it should not be too different than the 2.0.

https://www.berlingoforum.com/thread-167...#pid107632

Yes, that's the one!
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#9
When a couple of the glowplugs failed on my 1.9 diesel, the result on colder mornings was that, although it still started OK, for the first mile or so running was a bit lumpy and lots of white vapours billowed out of the exhaust. Then it ran normally.
Work van:     2020 1.5 BlueHDi 100 Enterprise Berlingo
Spare van:    2001 1.9 600d Berlingo
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#10
(01-12-2021, 12:41 PM)cancunia Wrote:  
(01-12-2021, 11:26 AM)FadedRedBerlingo Wrote:  
(01-12-2021, 09:48 AM)cancunia Wrote:  +1 for the fuel filter, the bulb staying flat suggests some kind of fuel restriction to me. The HDi engines can start without glowplugs except in extreme cold, the engine will probably run a bit rough until warm though as the glowplugs provide some kind of smoothing.

Yes, I'm going to change the fuel filter. Also thanks for the info that HDi engines can start without glowplugs, it might be that no power is getting to the glow plugs. I tested these 10 month old plugs for resistance and they are all good.

IIRC it's unlikely that the glowplugs will activate unless the outside temp is at or below 5 deg C, but I may be thinking about the indicator in the instrument panel, so could be wrong.
There's a post on here somewhere about wiring a light bulb in parallel with the glowplugs to see when / how long they're active

I thought maybe this morning being 9 deg C the glow plugs might not activate, but tomorrow morning should be 2 deg C at 8am, so they ought to activate. I'll hold the multimeter positive on a glow plug end and the neg on the battery neg while my wife turns the key.
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