To ensure safety and get better understanding when it comes to starting your RC engine, let’s start with the dos and don’ts, as well as the common mistakes that beginners made, and that you should avoid.
1. Don’t pull the starter if the RC engine is flooded.
If you do so, the pull starter will snap. You will know if it’s flooded when you find it hard or difficult to pull the starter cord.
The step you need to do when this happens is to get the excess fuel out of the RC engine by removing the glow plug, and then turn your RC car upside down.
Give the starter a couple of pulls to make the excess fuel comes out from the engine.
It’s also very important to keep in mind not to pull the starter out more than 20 centimetres. If you do so, it will bend the spring or snap the cord, or both.
2. Do always start your RC car with the wheels off the ground.
This will help avoid melting the nylon drive gears of your car. Make sure that the wheels can spin freely when starting the RC engine.
You can start the engine by supporting the chassis with a brick or something that can elevate it above the ground.
3. Don’t restrain the wheel from spinning freely using your hand or other object.
Again it can result to melting the nylon drive gears of your car in less than 30 seconds. Just ensure that the wheels can spin freely at all times.
4. Do always check to make sure the brake is off.
Before you start the car, be sure the brake is off. Check if it is off by pushing the RC car forward with the engine off and the transmitter on idle position.
If it’s hard to push that means the brake is on. This can result to overheating and melting the nylon gears. Put the brake off before you start the car.
Beware also from turning the throttle on the radio transmitter too low and putting the brake on accidentally.
5. Don’t leave the glow heater/igniter on the glow plug.
If you’re not starting the engine, be sure to get the glow heater or igniter off the glow plug. The glow plug will burn out very quickly if you don’t do so. Only put it on when you are ready to start the RC engine.
6. Do always check if the screws are tight.
Check the screws, engine head bolts and glow plug and make sure they are tight in place. If they are loose the RC engine will lose compression and you will find it hard to prime and start the engine.
10 Easy Steps to Starting Your Nitro RC Car
Once you have followed all the dos and don’ts above. It’s time to make the final preparation prior to starting your nitro RC engine.
1. Make sure the glow plug igniter is fully charged.
charge-glow-igniter.pngNitro-powered RC engines require a glow plug igniter for the glow plug. Most igniters take around 10 to 12 hours to charge fully.
2. Install the batteries.
Be sure that the batteries are installed in the radio transmitter and receiver pack. Typically the transmitter needs 8 batteries while the receiver pack needs 4 batteries.
Be sure the batteries are fully charged. See our full article on RC battery charging to learn more.
3. Fill the tank with fuel.
This is a crucial part. Ensure that you have the proper mixture of fuel for your RC car. Fill the tank with the correct nitro percentage (20% to 30% nitro) specified in the user’s manual. Read our article on RC Nitro Fuel to learn more.
Always keep the fuel safe in an airtight fuel container.
4. Install the air filter.
Some RC models already have air filter pre-installed. See if yours is installed or not. You can find the air filter in the box and install it onto the carburettor. Secure it properly using a zip tie if available.
5. Insert the antenna wire.
See to it that you unbundled the antenna wire and stand it up using the provided antenna straw.
6. Turn on the transmitter.
Turn on the transmitter and then the receiver. Don’t turn them off while the RC engine is still running.
7. Check if the throttle and brake servos are working properly.
Be sure the servos are operating and functioning correctly.
8. Prime the RC engine with fuel.
To prime the engine, put your finger over the exhaust outlet on the pipe.
Pull the starter cord a few times, typically 1-3 times, for the fuel to fill the fuel line.
Don’t overdo it to avoid flooding the engine.
Keep in mind that a cold engine requires more priming than a hot one.
9. Start the nitro RC car engine.
Attach the glow igniter onto the glow plug. Give the pull starter a quick short pull or more quick short pulls until the engine starts.
Avoid pulling the cord more than 20 centimetres or it will break the spring inside.
If the engine doesn’t start, prime it again and then give it another try.
10. Keep the engine running.
Once the engine starts, keep it running for a while. Read our full article on proper engine break in to learn more.
Here is also a good video on how to start your nitro RC car:
We hope that this guide can help you. If you have any further questions in regards to how to start your nitro RC car, buggy or monster truck, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.
Thank you for your time reading.