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Old 22-02-2014, 07:31   #1
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Hard to Start Yanmar in Cold Weather

Question: son purchased a Hunter 34 with a Yanmar engine. Trying to start the thing in chilly weather takes almost two batteries worth. Doesn't have glo plugs. So being an old truck driver I was wondering if a snort or two of ether would hurt in trying for a quicker start. Whaddaya think?
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Old 22-02-2014, 07:34   #2
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

forget the ether, if you have shore power available try a blow dryer into the intake instead.
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Old 22-02-2014, 08:07   #3
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

Ether = .... especially on a Yanni in my opinion.... Others and I have used WD40 on occasion with a problem... Not a good long term solution...

How is the cold start (first fire) in warmer weather? You may have another problem here being compounded by the cold....

Does it have any cold start provisions that aren't functioning properly??? Glow plugs/intake heater???
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Old 22-02-2014, 08:42   #4
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

That is probably a 2 or 3gm30f Yanmar. They have neither glowplugs or intake heaters. First make sure that you don't have a fueling problem, like an air leak in the fuel line. Does it finally start with a big cloud of smoke. That is an indication that it is not a fueling problem.

Poor compression or bad injectors can lead to hard starting. You can replace the injectors for about $100 each and that might help.

Otherwise:

1. A small Wolverine oil pan heater will keep the engine warm while plugged into shore power and make it start easier in cold weather.

2. The hair dryer trick mentioned above will also work.

3. Ether can be used, but sparingly. First crank the engine for 5 seconds to make sure that the cylinder walls are wet with diesel. Then while the engine is cranking, squirt a little in the air intake.

David
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Old 22-02-2014, 09:16   #5
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

Have had a 3gm20 in my previous boat in Ontario...cold up here..had to start it in November for new owner as had not winter prepared the engine! All suggestions so far are good ones and agree with ether being too agressive. You can also atomize propane at the intake snorkel of air cleaner. I just set up the cabin heater for 30 minutes, 3 turns and she fired.
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Old 22-02-2014, 14:09   #6
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

Thanx for the tips people. I'll relay them to my son. He's now the proud new Captain of the s/v Aundria Lynn.
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Old 22-02-2014, 15:31   #7
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

I took a long time to find the owners manual indicated to start cold with power lever full open & pull it back as the RPM picks up.
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Old 23-02-2014, 06:49   #8
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyMdRSailor View Post
Ether = .... especially on a Yanni in my opinion.... Others and I have used WD40 on occasion with a problem... Not a good long term solution...

How is the cold start (first fire) in warmer weather? You may have another problem here being compounded by the cold....

Does it have any cold start provisions that aren't functioning properly??? Glow plugs/intake heater???
I too have done this for years, seems safe. But you also need to look at your fuel.
#2 diesel doesn't flow like it should if its real cold, they do have anti gel stuff you can buy or you can buy cold weather fuel, a mixture of #1 and #2.
Do you have a clear intake, is your exhaust restricted.
I'd wager Yanmar sells an intake heater, or like one person wrote use a hair dryer.

A trick for heating the engine room I have seen done. Buy a decent Lantern, like a WT Kirkman, it's cheap, use lamp oil, not K1 or Paraffin, you will find it a good heater for your cabin too. you can mount the Little Giant model on a board so it wont tip over.
Will run 3 days on a quart of fuel. Modern Cold Blast Lanterns are safe too, if tipped over when burning the flame goes out. We use them in industry.
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Old 23-02-2014, 07:26   #9
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

Something is wrong. Contaminated fuel, injection pump timing wrong, low compression, shorted starter, high resistance in battery cables, most likely air in fuel lines so check return line to diesel tank for bubbles. Be careful when cranking for long time as muffler can fill with water and backup into engine. Other things I do not know about.
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Old 23-02-2014, 08:45   #10
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

A couple things that you should think about here. All that cranking is constantly introducing water into the engine whith no exhaust to push it through the muffler etc and out so you could flood the engine with raw water.
Secondly, the pistons in the 2GM20 and other small Yanmars are small with not a lot of meat between the top of the piston and the first ring land. An explosion such as produced from ether is sufficient to break the top of the piston to the first land then it is really hard to start and makes oil, or puts diesel in small amounts into the engine oil by leaking by the rings easier which eventually thins the oil out and results in poor compression. If you drop the oil and some fresh oil makes it start better then you have this problem. I've also had the mixing elbow cause me grief for starting and running. Plugged. Can't get anything out so nothing comes in.
Also, there is a fuel pump alternative for hard starting 2GM's that works great as well.
Hope this all helps.
D
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Old 23-02-2014, 08:59   #11
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

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Originally Posted by Crew of Turning View Post
Have had a 3gm20 in my previous boat in Ontario...cold up here..had to start it in November for new owner as had not winter prepared the engine! All suggestions so far are good ones and agree with ether being too agressive. You can also atomize propane at the intake snorkel of air cleaner. I just set up the cabin heater for 30 minutes, 3 turns and she fired.
I have used the propane trick (technically MAPP gas) to start cold nature'd, low battery diesels.
Turbo torch, unlit into the intake will provide a little extra juice. Usually gets them to fire without the downsides of ether.
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Old 23-02-2014, 09:06   #12
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

My 36 year old Yanmar 3QM30 starts great in warm weather. When it is cold, I plug in a clip on light with a heat lamp bulb over the cylinders for about 30 minutes. Once started the first time, I have no problems for the rest of the day.
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Old 23-02-2014, 09:49   #13
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Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

If you are starting cold yanmar do so with throttle fully opened. If you are already doing this heat always worked on mine
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Old 23-02-2014, 17:06   #14
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pirate Re: Hard to start Yanmar in cold weather

How long is it safe to crank before water intrusion?
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Old 23-02-2014, 19:31   #15
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Quote:
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How long is it safe to crank before water intrusion?
Depends on the size of muffler, height of manifold above muffler, hose size, Etc......
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