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First off you need a good battery or jumper leads as it takes a bit of cranking. You usually don't have to do it at the pump you crack it were the hard line goes into the injector. Back that nut of just enough that you can wriggle the hard line just a little. Then crank the motor over until you see that there are no air bubbles coming out with the fuel. Then tighten the nut while still cranking, after a couple have been bleed the engine will try to run. After the engine is running repeat the bleeding process to each injector again. It does help if you can hook you some low pressure air to the fuel tank and make sure that the fuel has reached the filter and pump before you start.
There will be 2 reasons. Either the very low level in the tank allowed the pump to pick up some of the sludge that generally accumulates. This would mean a strip down and clean. The other is that you have developed an air lock. This is easier to cure but potentially a bit dangerous to health!! Where the fuel lines feed the injectors, loosen the nuts off, just a bit, to allow any air out. Put new fuel in and try and start the car. DON'T stand near the engine bay as the pressure it comes out of those lines can inject fuel through the skin!! Crank engine until you see fuel escaping on in engine bay. Tighten them up and try and start car properly. If it starts then turn it off and allow discharged fuel to evaporate. After this if it starts but runs "lumpy" chances are still have an airlock in one of the feeds to injectors. DO NOT DO THIS WITH A WARM ENGINE. Be careful of the fuel, at all times
crack open an injector line and look for fuel at that point if no fuel there, take off oil filtertype fuel filter and look to see if it has fuel in it..we had a ford f650 superduty that a driver ran empty and were forever bleeding att hthe air out of the system to restart it..on diesels the system can have no air in the lines anywhere..so if the filter is empty, fill it before installing it...saves on the starter getting hot...in extreme cases you can pump pressure into the tank up to 20 psi and force fuel up front be careful on plastic tanks though...good luck and repost please...
This is not unusual on a diesel. What happens is there is air in the system. If this vehicle has an electric fuel pump loosen line where fuel enters injection pump then turn ignition key to the on position and watch for fuel to appear and then quickly tighten line before turning off key. Then try to start. If does not have electric fuel pump will need a second person. One will loosen line and watch while other cranks vehicle until you get fuel and tighten line before the other person releases ignition switch unless vehicle starts first. If that doesn't do the job do this where line hooks onto each injector. Probably will not have to do this to all injectors but could run rough until all the air gets out of everything. I have farmed with diesel tractor for 25 years and dad I drove the gm vehicles with the 5.7. You normally don't start a diesel without bleeding the air out of the lines although some will self bleed most won't. Hope this does the trick.
You may have to bleed the fuel system. There may be a very small air leak in the fuel supply line and after a long time idle, the fuel seeps bac into the tank, leaving an air lock in the pipe. When you go to start, this air makes its way into your injection pump & needs to be bled out before the engine will start. Begin from your fuel filter bleed valve, next the injection pump using the primer pump to transfer the fuel. Next loosen off the injector pipes and crank the engine over until fuel sprays form all the joints. Tighten injector pipes and start. It may run a bit rough for to begin with, but will soon even out. If it doesn't start, repeat bleeding of injectors.
Where do you see the air? If ther is air in the fuel, look on the suction side of the fuel pump all the way back to the fuel tank. Check every connection for tighhtness. If the hoses are old and cracked, replace them and the clamps.
Also for fun tighten the fuel pump lift screws if it is a mechanical pump.