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ydrol

Mk3 2L 03 Diesel Wont Start - Rapid Clicking - Youtube Vid.

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Hi all, I went to cinema on returning to the car , 3 hours later, it wouldn't start.

The air bag light flashes rapidly and there is a rapid clicking noise.

Also the temperature was displayed in Farenheit instead of centigrade which seemed a little suspicious , but other than that no signs of tampering. Is this immobiliser?

Here is a vid of me trying to start it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O61X7AgbSIY

Usually it starts first time no problem even when 2-3 degrees.

The recovery bloke tried to use a battery booster (incase it was flat battery - it wasn't), and we also tried to bump start it (luckily there were five of us!), but again no joy.

Any suggestions appreciated!

Also the range indicator was about 50miles and last filled up on Tesco Diesel (not usual choice) - Probably both irrelevant!

After a bit of googling I should also add that I think the LED in the clock is flashing but not sure. I'll check again in a couple of hours

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Sounds to me like your starter motor is kaput.

[edit] By the way, The clicking (though, I've never heard it to THAT extent) and dial-sweep are classic symptoms of a dead battery. So I'd get that checked properly too before you go changing bits.

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Thanks, they recovery chap didn't look too confident using the battery booster - it was a model he's not used before. I'll try a jump start this evening if not call a local mechanic..

We did try a bump start though and there didn't seem like any murmur from the engine, but maybe these cars don't bump easily?

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Modern cars don't like being bump started so I would avoid it if possible.

When you jump start it, connect up the leads and leave it connected for a period before starting your car, this will atleast put some life in the battery first

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Quick update:

Tried a jump from a smaller car (Renault Laguna IIRC) -

first attempt sounded like definite battery drain - a few clicks and all dash lights dimmed

we let it sit for a bit longer with his engine running and tried again - this time it behaved exactly like the first time (in the video)

There has also been water in the car (steamed up windows) for the last few weeks, getting in via back window. I've slapped some silicone sealant in the gap recently but car needs to dry out.

I'm about to rummage around in the loft for a 15+ year old battery charger and give that a go...

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Update. Definitely not battery. Tried booster, jump and an overnight charge using a home charger.

There are a lot of odd sounds coming from under the hood after trying to start then turning off ignition. I'll post up video soon...

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Ive been told its the battery at fault and quoted £115 including fitting. Does this sound right?

EDIT: I just checked halfords and prices are about this too! Sigh...

PS: My mate advised that even sealed maintenance free batteries can be revivied with a distilled water top up. Does that sound like a first port of call first?

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Well, I'd ask how much *without* fitting! Even if it's a fiver cheaper.

Price is in the right ballpark. I wouldn't waste time messing about with it - just get a new one. They're pricey but they should last for years (mine is still on the original battery, 9 years old).

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Hi all, I went to cinema on returning to the car , 3 hours later, it wouldn't start.

The air bag light flashes rapidly and there is a rapid clicking noise.

Also the temperature was displayed in Farenheit instead of centigrade which seemed a little suspicious , but other than that no signs of tampering. Is this immobiliser?

Usually it starts first time no problem even when 2-3 degrees.

The recovery bloke tried to use a battery booster (incase it was flat battery - it wasn't), and we also tried to bump start it (luckily there were five of us!), but again no joy.

Any suggestions appreciated!

Well, the dial sweep and the clicking is a classic sign of the effective battery voltage being low, and by low i mean about 6 - 8 volts. Now whether this is a very discharged battery, a high resistance battery, a battery with a couple of dead cells or a high resistance bit of wiring is less clear without other evidence though...

However, the high resistance or the dead cells mean a new battery (unless 'battaid' works for you, which is probably a bit of a long shot and is probably only a short-term fix anyway, so whether that's worth a shot is questionable).

I just checked halfords and prices are about this too! Sigh...

Halfords wouldn't be first my port of call (unless they've got an offer on): Ford are about the same price, when I last checked, and the Ford batteries are known to last. ECP and GSF (Eurocar parts and German Swedish and French) tend to be a little cheaper, and that's for a Bosch battery, and they tend to be good, depending on which you buy. Carparts4less would be worth checking, too.

Edit: Check the wiring first, though. Its the only cheap thing that it might be. It only has to be a very small resistance to cause a problem. And, if this goes further,if you could get any voltage readings, that would be good, too.

And, I have to point out that the battery seems to have gone from pretty decent to totally hopeless in no time flat, where it is more normal for batteries to degrade gradually. This does happen if individual cells short out, but that can be recognised by the open circuit voltage decreasing to around 10 volts or 8 volts (rather than 12) with one or two cells down. You just have to be sure that you aren't being deceived by the battery being loaded, though.

Edited by BOF

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The mechanic is installing an Oldham Heavy Duty battery. I'm assuming that he's done his homework on other possible root causes :)

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Well, I guess if he does it, and it turns out to *not* be that, you've at least got somebody to get a refund off of.

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Cheers, FWIW it was the factory installed battery being replaced. It had a sticker on it - first charged 2003! So it looks like it's had a good innings at a shade over 10years, and I'd be wise to stick with the new one regardless ? (Also I didn't collect the old one !)

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Ten years out of a battery is pretty good going. So yeah, cost issue aside, it won't do any harm to replace it.

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