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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Help! Mother in Law problem.....

Got Phone Call that the car was dead, the battery was flat and it wouldn't start.
Went to investigate, used my JumpStarter but noticed it had a bit of a problem.
This is where I need help.

I noticed the following symptoms on attempting to start it.

The grey box (function unknown until I get the workshop manual) that is fixed to the bulkhead is 'chattering' twice a second or so. It sounds like relays going in and out.
Other dashboard lights that flicker in unison with the grey box are
Hazard Light
Seatbelt warning
Oil Light
Handbrake on
Bulb gone Indicator

Sidelights flicker also.

No Heater Coil lights illuminate and when you try to start the engine all the lights stop flashing but dim and the engine does nothing.

Also if the ignition key is removed the hazard lights work fine, headlights work fine also.

So I guess that something in the igntion system has drained the battery flat and is now causing the above. Any Ideas? I need to get the mother in law mobile again fast!!!!!!!!
 

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Congratulations all things you list can seem alarming but they are all typical symptoms of a very flat battery. I doubt anything is wrong with the car aside from the battery. I've been 'here' a few times, with both my 440 TDis.

I seem to remember the 'clicking relay' is actually the seat-belt audible warning , as the charge in the battery gets lower and/or as you try to turn the engine the clicking of this and the hazard lights will get faster. I guess the drop in current caused by starter motor gain confuses the electronics which drives the dash, hence it all flashes in unison.

Its a turbo diesil, its got a monster starter motor which a beast to turn over pulling huge quantites of power, diesils often have heavier duty batteries than petrols - using a portable BoosterStarter will not resurrect a flat battery ( enough ) in my experience, and yours sound pretty flat, certainly not without being left for a good few minutes to charge up.

It will start from a jump from another car with *running* engine, or if you have a good hill then as its a diesil it might well "bump" start. Depress clutch - let car roll down the hill and build up speed, at about 10-15 mph bring up the clutch, if you're going fast enough the engine will start.

Remember to use the glowplugs!! Repeated failed starts can 'flood' then engine with diesil, using a full dose of the glow-plugs to get the mix good and hot before each attempt to start the car by any method drastically improves your odds of sucess.

Unlike a petrol engine a diesil has no spark plugs it relies on compression to cause the fuel mix to ignite, hence the beefy starter motor to turn the engine with enough force to compress the fuel. Hot fuel ignites better than cold fuel.

My apologies if I am teaching you to suck eggs here, but this might be new to someone.

Barmy
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Jesus built my volvo, its a love affair....
ding-a-ding-dang-my-dang-along-ling-long
 
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