GM Diesel Hummer Glow Plug Operation, Testing & Troubl. ..

GM Diesel Hummer Glow Plug Operation, Testing & Troubleshooting
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© Copyright 2000 - 2007 Oiuck Kopelson 04/23/2003
Updated October 30, 2009

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The engine glow plugs are used to heat air entering the combustion chamber. Heating the air results in improved cold temperature starting and engine warm-up. A total of eight glow plugs are used; one for each cylinder. Each glow plug is threaded into a cylinder head port located just below the injector nozzle. The tip of each plug extends into a pre-chamber which concentrates the fuel/air mixture prior to combustion. The glow plugs are operated by a controller/relay mounted on the rocker cover or intake manifold. The relay is in circuit with the ignition switch and is energized only when the switch is in the Start and Run positions. Tuming the ignition switch to Start position allows current to flow through the switch to the controller. Once energized the controller allows current to flow through the relay and to the individual glow plugs.

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If you start it up and it blows black smoke and then quits it's probably some bad plugs or the glow plug

controller. Glow plugs do go bad. I had a 96 Hummer wagon with the 6.5 turbo diesel with 22,000 miles and the glow plugs went bad. The engine just got harder and harder to start and wouldn't start once the temperature got below 50. I didn't even realize what was happening until I traded in the truck for a 98 and the 98 started on the first crank. I really don't know what caused the plugs to fail in this case. Plug failure is usually caused by excessiw heat and high \Oltage. The heat can be caused by a defectlvs glow plug controller keeping the current tumed on too long causing the plug to burn up. Ovsrly advanced injection timing, leaky injectors, or running gasoline in your engine will cause the combustion temperature in the pre-chamber to get hot enough to damage glow plug tips. Over \Oltage can be caused by voltaqe regulator problems in the altemator. Some aftermarket high output altemators can produce excesslve \Oltage also.

00 each. Current should be 13-14 amps. 4. Connect test leads between feed wire to each bank of glow plugs and to output terminal of glow plug controller/ relay.1 GLOW PLUG TEST When you turn the key over (for the glow plug controller) you should notice a voltaqe drop on the voltmeter which is caused by the high current draw of the glow plugs.. these plugs never get hot enough to cause tip distortion. Routine replacing of glow plugs is not necessary. Turn ignition switch to Run position to cycle glow plugs. without any indication of failure is not working in the owner's best interests lll leave that decision up to you. Current reading should be 50-55 amps at each bank when cycling. These plugs cost around $12. e<d~ro~~lt~o:. 3. Tools required: 1. GLOW PLUG TROUBLE SHOOTING This procedure is written for the 6. or current at glow plug is less than 13-14 amps. If current is zero at both locations.2 or 6. They only cost around 10 to 12 bucks each. Fusible links at all 10 locations.000 or more miles on the engine. . 5. Some say to replace all the glow plugs if you find one bad one. check fuses and circuit for shorts. 1.t-::ii~-·~~:. I would replace all the plugs if you find a bad one and you haw 50.5 diesel engine. 6. . Turn multi meter to amps or current flow setting. Since the temperature is regulated. This procedure should not be used for military HUMVEE models because they are 24 volt systems and their glow plug circuit and controller is radically different from the civilian models. 2. further diagnosis is required. it isn't necessary to replace the glow plug! The are not wear items like spark plugs.. If current to each bank of glow plugs is less than 50-55 amps. long nose. r---------------------------------~ Tests haw shown that the AC-60G is by far the best plug for either the 6. NOTE: It may be necessary to cycle ignition switch to OFF position between checks to reset controller internal timer. the self regulating feature kicks in and reduces current flow. Any dealer who recommends routine replacing of glow plugs. Military HUMVEE owners should refer instead to the proper TO for testing procedures. Then connect test leads in series between feed wire from relay and glow plug. 7..18/02/12 GM Diesel Hummer Glow Plug Operation. opens. and can last the life of the engine if they are not abused by a defective glow plug controller.5 NA engines. If there is no voltaqe drop perform the following tests.. This means that as the temperature of the glow plug tip goes beyond about 1400 degrees. Testing & Troubl. Check all glow plug connections which should be tight and corrosion free.o~. If a glow plug is not defective. Check current at each glow plug. Pliers. This plug has a PTC (positiw temperature coefficient) dual heating element which is thermally self limiting. grounds. Verify that engine temperature is at or below 95°P (35°C). Disconnect glow plug wire.

6. 12. Connect one meter lead to a good ground point (use the jumper wire if necessary) 4. Perform steps 5 through 9 on the remaining seven glow plugs. Replace the glow plug harness. 9. Connect one lead of the multi-meter to a glow plug wire (that passed the above test) on the left (driver's side) of the engine. 3. but as a switch or relay. The new GM/AC Delco part number is 12496472. Many GM dealers do not show it as a "glow plug controller". with alligator clip for ground point Glow plug test: 1. 6. Testing & Troubl. The current glow plug specification is AC-60G. 0. almost zero ohms is the nominal resistance 8. . Use the #1 jumper cable as required. Glow Plug Power Distribution test: 1. and should be replaced. Remove the lead from the first glow plug. The meter should read low resistance.4 ohms is the nominal resistance 8. Momentarily test the meter connections by grounding to another point the second test lead. Connect one meter lead to a good ground point (use the jumper wire if necessary) 4. Remove all glow plug connectors at the glow plugs.8 to 1. Jumper wire with a connector (spade. Remove the lead from the glow plug. 9.18/02/12 GM Diesel Hummer Glow Plug Operation. Perform this test with key off! 2. Any glow plug cable that reads high resistance probably has a bad fusible link. Measure conductivity to any glow plug on the right (passenger's side) of the engine. The meter should read zero ohms. Do NOT remove the remaining seven glow plug leads at this time. The meter should read zero ohms. Perform this test with the ignition key off. Reconnect the glow plug 10.. Multi-meter (VOM) either analog or digital Tools helpful: 1. Connect the non-grounded multi-meter lead to the glow plug cable connector. 7. Ifthere is an open (no conductivity. This value should be zero ohms. Connect the non-grounded multi-meter lead to the glow plug. Jumper wire. Set the multi-meter to ohms (conductivity) lowest scale (X1 is best) 3. Perform steps 5 through 8 on the remaining seven glow plugs. 11. When I replaced 8 of my plugs one was 28 ohms and another was 120k ohms. *********** Glow Plug Controller Note: There's a new GM part number for the glow plug controller for pre-2000 trucks. female) to match the Hummer glow plug. . Any glow plug that reads high resistance should be replaced. or replace the fusible link as necessary. 5. Damage to the meter may result if the key is accidentally cycled 2. 13. 7. The meter should read low resistance. Momentarily test the meter connections by grounding to another point the second test lead. 5. Set the multi-meter to ohms (conductivity) lowest scale (X1 is best) 3. 2. high resistance) then one or both of the main glow plug controller output fusible links has failed. 14.

Almost always the black wires are ground. and that the glow plug controller makes a clicking sound as it cycles. There are three wires (pink. It has two large 1/4" studs on the top.. 2. even with the ignition off. First diagnostic: check for 12V at the power feed terminal.:) Cll Lilt:: ~IUVV IJIU~ VVIIt::IIt::Vt::1 u re VVClIL"~lll I. If no.:) ClUUUl I L VUll. I bellevs that the forward-most stud is the one for the glow plugs. but with some computer control. If there is power. This generally destroys the glow plugs. Some trucks haw 4. Remove the #1 glow plug lead. This is the most common failure. Try to simulate what the glow plug controller would do. One of the large studs is the power feed. and Yellow is control. (caused by . did the glow plug wait light illuminate? 8. Because of the low readings.. 9. I tested out my glow plug controller. The computer reacts to temperature and other input. It should be present. If yes.:) illuminated. (note: steps 3 through 6 may be repeated for each of the remaining glow plugs in place of the harness test described above.18/02/12 GM Diesel Hummer Glow Plug Operation. This failure mode is uncommon. any scale that will you to observe about 12 volts. Testing & Troubl. The glow plug controller is located on top of the engine on the passenger side on the firewall. 2. installed it. jumper from the battery to this stud. Attach the multi-meter ground lead to a good engine ground. Controller Problems: 1. The glow plugs are energized all the time.:)t::1 vt:: LlICll Lllt::lt:: I. The glow plugs don't work at all. Usually difficult starts when ambient temperature is below about 70F (21 C) though this varies from engine to engine. the problem is probably a wiring fault on the glow plug controller's output (to the glow plugs) harness.1. Be sure to use a large gauge wire (. about the shape of a large deck of cards. disconnect the wire and start the truck.#10). .hth9 u. It is a dark colored box. Set your multi-meter to volts. Almost always the pink is 'ignition feed'. the wait light did not light. the controller is malfunctioning. This is a fusable link from the starter motor. either the glow plug controller is defective or is not receiving the correct signals to turn on. and the \Ultage at the glow plugs themselves is 9. Using a heavy jumper wire (. Note: Removal of failed glow plugs is easiest if there is a glow plug removal tool available. Well. Glow plug controller cycles but doesn't make the glow plugs go on. 3. Don't just connect it up and leave it.) 7. 2. yellow and black) at the top of the Glow Plug Controller on my 97. See AMG Manual page FO-8 Engine Harness Jumper (Turbo) for details. and the engine is cold. apply power to the glow plug stud for a few seconds. After a few seconds. DC. and the \Ultage at the plugs is now 11. I purchased another 3 wire glow plug controller from a local Chevy dealer (70 bucks).510 truck. If 12 volts is not obtained in the above test. Most common: the indicator light bulb in the dash is either bad or not making good contact. VU. The other stud is the connection to the glow plugs. goes to pin C6 on the ECM located under the doghouse . The glow plug controller functions basically like a relay. If there is no power.8 when the controller is active. and tries not to bum out the glow plugs. Glow plug system failures: 1. d Att~r.#10). Glow Plug Controller test: 1.

I undo the coolant reservoir and the large air intake pipe and push them to the side. do so. and ten mi nutes later you are set. or 72 F. AC-9s fail easily. If ambient temperature is over about 22 C. The plugs need a deep 3/8" socket. thorough a fusible link. Older Hummers sometimes (due to defective glow plug controllers) have bad glow plugs. At least all the trucks I know of will start. Most of the time the newer style of non swelling plugs will come right out.) 3. Break the tip off the glow plug and allow it to fall into the cloth. That took me another hour to fish out. The extraction tools (see below) will allow you to get a plug out that has frozen threads buts it won't prevent the swollen piece from dropping bits and pieces as it gets pulled out. AC-62s rarely fail. vacuum up any small pieces with a piece of tubing attached to a vacuum cleaner hose and then pull out the cloth once you are sure there are no pieces on it.. I always install my glow plugs with antisieze grease and they never are difficult to remove. It ended up wedged in the motor mount. There are a bunch offusible links in the glow plug circuit. Testing & Troubl. If you want to replace the glow plug controller. You can get all the plugs in from the top. All other power then taps off from there. Remove the injector. Disconnect the batteries (very important!). The only thing you can do is use whatever force is necessary to extract the glow plug. GLOW PLUG and Controller Removal and INSTALLATION ALWAYS use plenty of penetrating oil A FEW days in a row BEFORE trying the get the glow plugs out. You do not have to take the doghouse and rear engine cover off. your truck should start regardless of whether the glow plugs are working or not. Fish out the broken piece (a magnet works). but can fail. 5. I had a lot of problems getting the socket at the right angle because there is a metal heat shield directly under the glow plugs getting in the way of the wrench. On my 98 the passenger side is the difficult side because there's lots of stuff in the way. If you break one off you have a problem Remove the injector and run the piston to full IDC before trying to remove it If . . It is neither expensive. burned glow plug contactor contacts. Sometimes the tips of older plugs get damaged (swelled up) from the heat and can't be easily removed from the cylinder head. nor terribly difficult to replace. It will ruin your engine. AC-11s are much more resistant to failure.18/02/12 GM Diesel Hummer Glow Plug Operation. remove the dog house. 4. In fact when I was working on the front plug I dropped it down the heat shield and couldn't find it for over an hour. You don't want pieces of glow plug to get into the combustion chamber. If a glow plug has failed. you must check the fusible link to ensure it is OK. stuff the pre combustion chamber outlet port with some kind of cloth that you can pull out in one piece with a pair of pliers. The glow plug controller serves as the main power connector for the Hummer's electrical system! It is connected directly to the battery. Strange problems can occur if the terminal nut is loose.

and unscrew the glow plug until all threads are exposed. Automotive Specialty tools. preventing it from snapping off inside of the head. and begin unscrewing the glow plug until it is fully extracted. 2. Remove the 2 nuts holding the controller to the manifold. Install one of the set's furnished spacers between the split nut and the cylinder head. That assumes that there is enough to grab though.. If not then you will have to use the extractor method. Open the split nut and install it around threads nearest the top of the glow plug. Hold the split nut wrench in place (do not tum). Clean all the connections and install the new one. 4. Only my broken plug was passenger side second from the back. 5. Pull the controller out exposing the terminal with the battery cable. Remove the nut holding the ring connector with the wires going to the glowplugs. Same thing happened to me last year. Attach a suitable open-end wrench (1/16" or 18mm) to the split nut. Remove the sensor wire from the glow plug sensor connector. there is enough sticking out 50 that you can grab it with some vise grips you could try heating it with a very small torch tip. Undo the nut and you are home free. Be sure to use the spacer needed to maintain a solid base during the extraction procedure. The key is to soak the plugs with PB Blaster or similar penetrating spray . 6. This will reduce side load on the heating element of the glow plug. Testing & Troubl. Select the appropriate split nut from your service set (1 Omm or 12mm). Removing and replacing the controller is really easy and doesn't require removal of the engine cover. Be certain the split nut closes completely. Disconnect the battery at the positive post. . With the air intake pipe out of the way and the CDR valve removed simply disconnect the wiring harness plug by pulling up on the catch and lifting the plug out of the controller. No access at all. How to use Glow Plug Extractors 1. Attach a suitable wrench (1 Omm or 12mm box-End or deep socket) to the top of the glow plug. You will find that if you can get a pinpoint heat right on the plug for a short time then follow it up with some penetrating oil like PB Blaster it will come out. For some applications.18/02/12 GM Diesel Hummer Glow Plug Operation. use of spacers may not be necessary. 3. Spray lightly with approved lubricant.

I tried that tonight and every thing worked fine. the access is very good from the inside. If it goes off to the side you will start to drill into the threads. spray and let soak for several hours then try to grab with small vise grips and try to tum out. If that happens it's time for a new head. HM MWV Starting Problems Thanks for all the advise on my glow plug controller. It's only $3. Since the center core is a stronger material than the plug casing it will be difficult to have the drill stay in the center. If that does not work you can try to drill out the center and use an extractor to back it out.000. The material is fairly soft so be careful. Apparently the control box remembers the last few starts and defaults the prior starts. If enough thread is outside of the block. or possible boat anchor. . Install glow plugs in each cylinder head Tighten plugs to 8-12 Ib-ft.. I had started a few times in warm weather without cycling the glow plugs . Testing & Troubl.18/02/12 GM Diesel Hummer Glow Plug Operation. Now in warm weather the wait light was just flashing and truck wouldn't start. After installing new glow plugs and a PCBI control box this winter (the new KDS) my truck started perfect all winter. Peter James of Sydney suggested disconnecting the batteries to re set the control box. You should use anti-sieze compound on the threads. prior to removal Your broken plug location may save you. I kept myoid block with broken plug as a souvenir.

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