Date registered: Oct 2009
Vehicle: 2000 VW Golf Variant
Location: Leiden, Netherlands
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
The original glow plug system on your car doesn't have a relay, but sometimes a relay is installed. The salt shaker originally contains a glow plug, which glows in par with the rest of the glowers.
If you install new pencil-type glowers and wire the current through the salt shaker glower, you add a resistor to the circuit. The pencil-type glowers operate on 12V, the old loop-style ones work on about 2V (they are wired in series, with extra resistors so they can handle the 12V from the battery). If you leave the salt shaker glower, it will drop the current to the new glowers and add resistance and because the resistance in the entire system is lower than the old system, the salt shaker glower can burn through.
So fuel is getting into the cylinders, starter does OK, I think were are down to glow plugs.
Some people spray a little WD-40 in the air intake, to force-start a diesel, but that is a last-resort measure. The procedure isn't without risk, because you introduce fuel at the wrong moment in the combustion cycle.