Start Up Problem for a 1979 300SD?

I have a 1979 300 SD car with only 188km that is having difficulties starting during cold weather in Canada.
I have a block heater. The starter and alternator have been checked and seem to be working
fine. I installed a brand new battery.
The mechanic just can't figure out what the problem may be. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Judy
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Have him test your compression; cold. Find out what the reading is on the 1st compression stroke.

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When were the engine's valves last adjusted? Adjustment is due every 24,000 kms.
And your starting technique: At 0 degrees C. M-B wants the accelerator depressed and held there while the motor is being cranked, let off the accelerator when the motor fires. At -20 degrees C. M-B wants the accelerator pumped three times before cranking the motor, then the above procedure.
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I agree with valve adjustment... also check your glow plug system.
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A question: How quickly does the motor shut down after the key is turned to OFF?
Almost instantly? Or does it trail to a stop - over two or three seconds?
Should stop almost instantly, otherwise could affect starting.
I don't want to go further without knowing a bit more.
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On Feb 18, 6:19 pm, "-->> T.G. Lambach <<--" <"T.G. Lambach at NoHamorSpamcomcast.net"> wrote:

Thanks to evryone for your responses.
I've had someone come and listen to the car as I start it.
First, the car does stop immediately when the ignition is turned off. When I had the second heavy duty 12" battery installed, the car started like a dream.
What else has been happening is after a day of driving, the car is parked overnight with the block heater plugged in. On some mornings when I go to start there is very little power as if something is draining the battery power. A suggestion is that 1 the wire from the battery to the starter be checked 2 battery to ground 3 starter to ground
Is there anything else I might need to check.
When I get the car to the mechanics I will check the valves and glow plugs. The car only has 188km on her.
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You are probably on the right track about the grounding strap... the battery negative ground cable is the first thing to check and the ground strap... which is by the starter if I am not mistaken... needs to be replaced.
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Thanks Tiger, Would these wires cause the battery to be drained in the morning? Judy
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No, a bad cable just won't be able to deliver as much current which is critical when cranking. If you leave the car until it's reached a final cold temperature, say 8 hours and it starts OK, but won't crank about the same after sitting for say 24 hours or 48 hours at the same temp, that suggests you have a small load that is not turning off and draining the battery.
You can disconnect one of the battery leads and insert an amp meter. With everything off, the current should only be 10ma or so, which would be the clock, etc. If it's substantially more, something is drawing current and you need to track it down.
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wrote:

Thank you. This problem has been going on for 4 weeks. Now I can hopefully figure it out.
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If the battery has been drained overnight there are some suspects on your model:
The cursed climate control "servo" is reported to drain a battery. The car's power antenna is known to drain a battery. A stuck power window switch can drain the battery.
If you need to replace the servo I'd suggest you check out a digital retrofit system from www.unwiredtools.com. I installed it on my '80 300SD and it works well.
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On Feb 19, 7:08 pm, "-->> T.G. Lambach <<--" <"T.G. Lambach at NoHamorSpamcomcast.net"> wrote:

Thanks to everyone for your assistance. I really appreciate it. Judy
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My mechanic looked after the car for the previous owner. He checked out everything and in the shop it starts every time. Valves were done by him, the glow plugs fine. He's baffled! He said I may have to take it into Mercedes to have them run diagonstics on it. Is there anything else before I take it to them?
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wrote:

My mechanic looked after the car for the previous owner. He checked out everything and in the shop it starts every time. Valves were done by him, the glow plugs fine. He's baffled! He said I may have to take it into Mercedes to have them run diagonstics on it. Is there anything else before I take it to them?
If you are talking about the starting problem it is either fuel (pump, filters, algae etc), electrical (battery, relay, glow plugs, block heater etc.) or mechanical(vacuum, valves, worn rings etc.) . Based on the report of a battery drain problem I would certainly fix the problem or replace the battery before I took it to the stealership.
If you want to troubleshoot the battery drain problem try here: http://www.wikihow.com/Find-a-Parasitic-Battery-Drain
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In this entire discussion there isn't a good description of exactly how it behaves when it won't start. If it barely turns over, and won't crank for more than a min, that is a very different thing than if it turns over normally, with plenty of cranking ability, but won't fire at all, etc. Does it always have this starting problem, or does it depend on temperature? Does it start perfectly when warm?
Did the mechanic leave it out over night in the cold at similar temps to when the problem occurs? BTW, I wouldn't have much faith in any mechanic who said you have to take it to MB for them run "diagnostics" on the car. There isn't any special diagnostic that MB has for a 30 year old car. It's just basic problem solving and elimination that any decent diesel mechanic should be capable of doing.
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I agree, the trail has gotten confused.
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My mechanic looked after the car for the previous owner. He checked out everything and in the shop it starts every time. Valves were done by him, the glow plugs fine. He's baffled! He said I may have to take it into Mercedes to have them run diagonstics on it. Is there anything else before I take it to them?
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What kind of "diagnostics" does your wanna-be so-called mechanic think any dealership could run on a 1979 116 body 300SD??
"Valves were done by him, the glow plugs fine. He's baffled!"
How about a compression test?
How about a battery performance test?
How about finding a real mechanic instead of this parts replacer you are wasting your time with?? Test test test.
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