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Old 6th December 2010, 22:55   #1
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Default Ikon failed starting on slope

Just back from a Yercaud trip in my Ikon. It was exactly 500km trip from home (bangalore, btm) - Yercaud - home. While coming down the ghat section, my wife felt sick so had to stop for 20 mins. During this time I kept the ac fan/blower on with engine off. After this when I tried to start the car it didn't start or even crank. Signs of battery drained off? Its an OEM 4 years/10k kms old.

Now the scary part. I thought of starting the engine by putting the car in gear, press clutch, let the car roll and then release clutch. Something that we grew up watching. But then it dawned on me that the brakes doesn't work, steering almost locked and needs superhuman effort to turn a little, when the engine is off. On top of this there was a big boulder in front of me. I intentionally parked behind it as a precaution, to assure it will prevent the car from rolling down in case the handbrake fails. My wife, oblivious to all the mechanical issues, got panicky thinking what will happen if we are to get stuck in this hill. That was morning 10:30. Her emotions got multiplied by her sickness and steadily increasing monkey population around our car. In the end I did exactly as above. The car started within a metre of rolling down. Now the questions.

1. Is the battery about to be dead? I checked it two months ago, the cold voltage showed 12.6 V and on engine running it was 14.5 V
2. How badly is my engine going to be damaged for what I did?
3. What should I have done (engine starting way)?
4. Is it not recommended to run ac blower when the engine is off?

As I write, I shiver at the thought what would have happened if the car didn't start with no steering and no brakes on a slope with hairpin bends.

Thanks for reading. Appreciate any replies.
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Old 7th December 2010, 00:40   #2
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Just change your battery and all will be fine. 4 years is too long a period to go without a battery change, no matter what the battery manufacturers tell you.

The AC blower was running on a battery that was on it's last legs. That compounded the problem.

Don't worry about the engine, nothing happened to it.
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Old 7th December 2010, 01:01   #3
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yeah it might be time for a new battery before you take it on the next road trip.
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Old 7th December 2010, 01:10   #4
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Wow, 4 years and just 10k kms. Beats my santro at 10 years old and 35k kms.

Is that a diesel Ikon? Diesel cars consume more battery power. 4 years is quite long for an OEM battery to last.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fordday View Post
1. Is the battery about to be dead? I checked it two months ago, the cold voltage showed 12.6 V and on engine running it was 14.5 V
I suggest you change the battery or at least get it checked by a battery wala.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fordday View Post
2. How badly is my engine going to be damaged for what I did?
IMHO the engine shouldn't be damaged unless there was something else wrong with the car other than the battery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fordday View Post
3. What should I have done (engine starting way)?
The recommended starting procedure is through jumper cables as given in the manual.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fordday View Post
4. Is it not recommended to run ac blower when the engine is off?
The AC blower consumes very less power but it is not recommended to run it for hours together with the engine off.

Cheers
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Old 7th December 2010, 12:18   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordday View Post
1. Is the battery about to be dead? I checked it two months ago, the cold voltage showed 12.6 V and on engine running it was 14.5 V
2. How badly is my engine going to be damaged for what I did?
3. What should I have done (engine starting way)?
4. Is it not recommended to run ac blower when the engine is off?
1) Yup sounds like its on its way out.

2) Don't think any damage would have happened, max it would have put a lil strain on the catcon

3) Slot it in second, declutch, gain momentum and while leaving clutch a small input from the cranking. Will give you a quick start.

4) No if it is more than 2-3 minutes. Just run the engine, you are not going to waste liter's of fuel. Maybe couple of ml's.

Get the battery changed, thats all.
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Old 7th December 2010, 12:25   #6
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Is that a diesel Ikon? Diesel cars consume more battery power.
Sorry if this is unrelated..but why do diesels consume more battery power? higher energy required to crank?
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Old 7th December 2010, 12:54   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordday View Post
But then it dawned on me that the brakes doesn't work, steering almost locked and needs superhuman effort to turn a little, when the engine is off.
Characteristics of a vehicle with power steering & power brakes. Will not work unless the engine is running.

You would need a straight stretch to try this rolling start. Like Jaggu said, use 2nd gear.

And also be ready to use the hand-brake for emergency stopping.
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Old 7th December 2010, 13:26   #8
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Thanks all for your replies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggu View Post
2) Don't think any damage would have happened, max it would have put a lil strain on the catcon

3) Slot it in second, declutch, gain momentum and while leaving clutch a small input from the cranking. Will give you a quick start.
Why will the catcon come under strain? There is a thread related to this somewhere, can't seem to find it now. Can you please explain a little?

"Small input from the cranking" means turning the ignition key to crank or pressing the A pedal?

Quote:
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Characteristics of a vehicle with power steering & power brakes. Will not work unless the engine is running.

You would need a straight stretch to try this rolling start. Like Jaggu said, use 2nd gear.

And also be ready to use the hand-brake for emergency stopping.
Exactly. But in my case, I was on a slope with a series of hairpin bends ahead of me. I shudder at the thought what would have happened when I let the car roll and the engine didn't start, with no brakes or steering on a hairpin bend. Hand brakes would have hardly worked if the car gained momentum on the slope.
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Old 7th December 2010, 13:57   #9
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Brakes will work but will be very hard after couple of pumping, thats all. If you are careful and can ensure traffic is clear you can manage along with the hand brakes.
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Old 7th December 2010, 14:20   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordday View Post
Just back from a Yercaud trip in my Ikon. It was exactly 500km trip from home (bangalore, btm) - Yercaud - home. While coming down the ghat section, my wife felt sick so had to stop for 20 mins. During this time I kept the ac fan/blower on with engine off. After this when I tried to start the car it didn't start or even crank. Signs of battery drained off? Its an OEM 4 years/10k kms old.

Now the scary part. I thought of starting the engine by putting the car in gear, press clutch, let the car roll and then release clutch. Something that we grew up watching. But then it dawned on me that the brakes doesn't work, steering almost locked and needs superhuman effort to turn a little, when the engine is off. On top of this there was a big boulder in front of me. I intentionally parked behind it as a precaution, to assure it will prevent the car from rolling down in case the handbrake fails. My wife, oblivious to all the mechanical issues, got panicky thinking what will happen if we are to get stuck in this hill. That was morning 10:30. Her emotions got multiplied by her sickness and steadily increasing monkey population around our car. In the end I did exactly as above. The car started within a metre of rolling down. Now the questions.

1. Is the battery about to be dead? I checked it two months ago, the cold voltage showed 12.6 V and on engine running it was 14.5 V
2. How badly is my engine going to be damaged for what I did?
3. What should I have done (engine starting way)?
4. Is it not recommended to run ac blower when the engine is off?

As I write, I shiver at the thought what would have happened if the car didn't start with no steering and no brakes on a slope with hairpin bends.

Thanks for reading. Appreciate any replies.
Man, that was some risk you took! When the engine is out, the Power Steering goes dead and the power supply to assist brakes is cut off. So, the steering is terribly hard to maneuver and the brakes need to be slammed with all you've got.

Thing with brakes is, for the initial 2-3 times you press, they work fine and after that, they need a lotta effort. And given the fact that you were on a downslope on a ghat, big risk!

1) 4 yrs battery so it's on its way out.
2) no harm would have been caused to the engine
3) as mentioned by others, keep the car in 2nd gear and ignition turned on, press the clutch, go some distance, release the clutch and intermittently press the accelerator, once the engine is steady, keep the engine idling at a decent rpm for a short while.
4) the blower consumes an awful lotta energy and with a 4 yr battery, it is bound to drain it.

Be careful!

PS : you in BTM too eh? stage 1 or 2? I'm in stage 1.
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Old 7th December 2010, 14:53   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
3) as mentioned by others, keep the car in 2nd gear and ignition turned on, press the clutch, go some distance, release the clutch and intermittently press the accelerator, once the engine is steady, keep the engine idling at a decent rpm for a short while.
PS : you in BTM too eh? stage 1 or 2? I'm in stage 1.
learnt my lessons -
need to change my battery soon.
I did the above in 1st gear, need to do it in 2nd gear.
carry jumper cables.

After starting the car, immediately drove down without idling. RPM was stuck near 1200 and engine was jerking. Feathered the accelerator and released it and all went well with rpm hovering near 3000 on the slopes with speeds of about 40kmph on 2nd gear.

Last edited by fordday : 7th December 2010 at 15:09. Reason: typo
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Old 8th December 2010, 09:52   #12
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Post Re: Ikon failed starting on slope

Quote:
Originally Posted by mile201 View Post
Sorry if this is unrelated..but why do diesels consume more battery power? higher energy required to crank?
Spot on! Petrol engines require initial momentum from the starter motor and the spark plugs do the rest. But in a diesel engine all the cranking power comes from the starter motor. In a diesel engine diesel ignites from compression compared to a petrol engine where sparks are sufficient, the power that is consumed is humongous.
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