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Old 03-04-2014, 12:26 PM
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Dead starts

Hey guys here's one for ya. Several times now, 4,5 or 6, upon cold start I'll getb nothing on the crank up. No ticking, usually, just dead. I once turned the headlights on and got a weird grinding noise. Then the truck will start upon a second or third crank after sitting a bit. Mechanic couldn't find anything with battery, alt, starter. This makes me think wiring somewhere but no idea where to start.
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Old 03-04-2014, 01:02 PM
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Re: Dead starts

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Originally Posted by Throapy View Post
Hey guys here's one for ya. Several times now, 4,5 or 6, upon cold start I'll getb nothing on the crank up. No ticking, usually, just dead. I once turned the headlights on and got a weird grinding noise. Then the truck will start upon a second or third crank after sitting a bit. Mechanic couldn't find anything with battery, alt, starter. This makes me think wiring somewhere but no idea where to start.
Thanks.
Year, model, drive train, engine helps narrow down.
Battery, battery age, any grease on battery posts
Cheap voltmeter reading across battery posts when cold
Same voltmeter reading from + terminal to fender ground when cold.
Same voltmeter reading from + terminal on starter solenoid to fender ground
when cold and starter switch doesn't produce click.

Some folks put grease between the battery posts and the connectors--bad idea particularly when cold.

However, without model info, it is hard for someone to tell you to check a given relay, transmission interlock, etc. that can also cause no click on some models.
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Old 03-04-2014, 04:42 PM
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Re: Dead starts

sorry completely brain melted on particulars.
2004, GC, selec-trac, 6 cyl engine. battery is 1 year old, no apparent(obvious) drain on it.
I don't have the equip for a volt check, but unless there's some weird drain I don't think its the battery as I had it looked at today and mech says battery, alt, and starter are ok.
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Old 03-04-2014, 05:09 PM
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Re: Dead starts

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Originally Posted by Throapy View Post
sorry completely brain melted on particulars.
2004, GC, selec-trac, 6 cyl engine. battery is 1 year old, no apparent(obvious) drain on it.
I don't have the equip for a volt check, but unless there's some weird drain I don't think its the battery as I had it looked at today and mech says battery, alt, and starter are ok.
Any aftermarket ignition kill or security devices on the vehicle?

As for equipment for a voltage check, a cheap DVM can be had for under $20 bucks.
A bit more if you want the nice needle point probes that allow you to carefully probe thru wire covers.

If your mechanic is not an electrical/alternator specialist, try one.

Unfortunately, there are many causes, such as the transmission interlock, the interlock relays in the under hood relay box, etc.

You will be at the mercy of a mechanic's desire to put their kids thru college unless you buy a cheap volt/ohmmeter and a factory service manual for the wiring diagrams.

Mine turned out to be a !!@#$!@#$ ignition kill that the prior owner had half removed. On cold or extra wet days, no click, no nothing.

The noise when you turned your headlights on is interesting, but it could just be one of the relays behind the glove compartment chattering/whistling because the voltage is low. The light delay relay tends to do that if it ain't getting enough voltage.

On that 6 banger, if you have a jumper cable, try jumping the - post of the battery to ground next time this happens. The grounds are notoriously poor, but easy to fix.

However, the vehicle is also notorious for getting corrosion pretty much around the body, where the rear lights and lift gate are common areas...


A couple meter leads or similarly heavy wires to jumper across suspect areas helps, as does careful use of a jumper cable to bypass the cable from battery to starter solenoid, add an extra ground, etc.
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Old 03-05-2014, 06:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lstowell View Post
Any aftermarket ignition kill or security devices on the vehicle?


A bit more if you want the nice needle point probes that allow you to carefully probe thru wire cover.

no such thing as poking through wire insulation that's how broken wires come about. either use T-pins to back probe terminals, or ohm out harnesses and cables from one end to other.


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Old 03-06-2014, 11:17 AM
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Re: Dead starts

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Originally Posted by hoffmanestates View Post
no such thing as poking through wire insulation that's how broken wires come about. either use T-pins to back probe terminals, or ohm out harnesses and cables from one end to other.


Sent from my LG-P999 using Tapatalk 2
Or, you could use the special needle type points as suggested do to it. Actually safer than using something larger like a T-pin--the points are designed for exactly such a use, the T pin is designed for paper.
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Old 03-06-2014, 08:04 PM
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dealers and manufacturers state not to puncture the cable insulation, and to back probe. if you directly puncture so be it. but I love telling customers they Fawked up a ecu harness

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Old 03-07-2014, 02:13 PM
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Re: Dead starts

Quote:
Originally Posted by hoffmanestates View Post
dealers and manufacturers state not to puncture the cable insulation, and to back probe. if you directly puncture so be it. but I love telling customers they Fawked up a ecu harness

Sent from my LG-P999 using Tapatalk 2
I'll definitely agree with you that if you do not know what you are doing, and don't have a buddy with a good background that does, don't puncture wires.

Used by a tech with a good electronics wiring background, the superfine needle point probes don't even leave visible signs. They also tend to work pretty good for back probing the connectors you can get to...

But I suspect we'd also agree that unless you have good factory service manuals AND a good background in electronics diagnosis, you'd be best off just using a cheap VOM for simple checks and letting a pro take care of anything above that.....

... avoids unleasing the Genie that lives in the magic smoke.
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