Continuing to diagnose a non-starting engine - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old November 29th, 2006, 09:36 PM
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Ken Loy
1994 Portofino Red ST
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Continuing to diagnose a non-starting engine

New starter.
Now, when I crank the engine, all I hear is clicking sounds coming from the starter and the starter relay. I push started the truck and VA-ROOOM... starts fine.

I checked voltage going into the ignition module (stock) and it appears to be correct at 12VDC.

I'm suspecting now that it's the ignition module gone bad. Can you guys give me some feedback? Am I right on? Or what else should I be looking at/for?
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  #2  
Old November 30th, 2006, 07:05 AM
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John Robison
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Clicking sounds from the starter relay mean low voltage at one of those points, or a failed part.

The ignition module is not involced.

Look for cable problems, ignition switch trouble, neutral switch, a bad starter, etc. Use a meter to measure voltage at the starter power and solenoid wire when trying to crank. That should be your first test, and then work back from there if the starter is good.
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  #3  
Old November 30th, 2006, 08:32 AM
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Ken Loy
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John,
I installed a brand new starter and it cranked / started just fine after that. Of course, different now.
I hear clicking coming from the starter area when I crank it.
I saw some troubleshooting steps in the workshop manual which describe checking voltages at coil, the ignition module, distributor. Are those likely culprits too?
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  #4  
Old November 30th, 2006, 08:49 AM
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evilfij
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Clicking means you are not getting enough juice to turn the starter. What happens when you try to jump start the truck?

It is either the battery, the starter, the starter solinoid, or the cables/grounds to the starter/battery/ solinoid (is the solinoid independently grounded?).
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  #5  
Old November 30th, 2006, 09:16 AM
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Mike Doligalski
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Could be any one of the the things already proposed. My experience is that when a friend of mine's bronco II had similar symptoms and made a similar clicking noise when cranked, the starter solinoid was toast. A cheap replacement was all he needed to fix the issue.
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  #6  
Old November 30th, 2006, 01:02 PM
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Ken Loy
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Jump starting didn't have any different results
I got a new solenoid with the starter.
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  #7  
Old November 30th, 2006, 01:23 PM
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Greg
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Plucked this off the internet:

If you hear a clicking noise, it means voltage is getting through to the solenoid. But there may not be enough voltage to spin the starter. So start with the battery and cables.

Are the battery cables clean and tight? Are the other electrical connections at the solenoid and starter clean and tight? It doesn’t take much corrosion to choke off the flow of amps to the starter.

Next, check the wiring connections on the solenoid and starter. Are they clean and tight? Also check the solenoid ground connection or its mounting. Rust or corrosion here can interfere with the flow of amps, too.

Try bypassing the solenoid to see if the starter spins. If it spins, the problem is excessive resistance in the solenoid. Replace the solenoid. If the starter doesn’t spin, or turns very slowly, however, the starter is dragging and needs to be replaced.

And another link: http://www.popularmechanics.com/how_...e/1272416.html
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  #8  
Old November 30th, 2006, 01:30 PM
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Tony Brooks
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Ken, I still have a sneaking suspicion that your battery isn't holding a full charge (that's not a euphamism). Have you tried swapping a known good one? FWIW, I had this same problem with a red top in the defender -- just enough power to light the lights, but not enough to turn the truck over.
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  #9  
Old November 30th, 2006, 03:28 PM
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Chris Davis
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It could be a ground issue. I would use your jumper cables to ground the starter directly from the battery and see what that will do.
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  #10  
Old November 30th, 2006, 04:23 PM
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Ken Loy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abrooks
Ken, I still have a sneaking suspicion that your battery isn't holding a full charge
A really cool dude loaned me his battery charger and I charged it overnight. Right after I unplugged it from the wall, I dropped it in the truck. All the lights and everything else are working bright and clear. I also took the battery to Autozone and they checked it on their diagnostic machine.

I'll take another look at my connections to the starter. What's kicking my ass is that it started up perfectly right after I put the new starter in the truck.

I'll double check the wiring at the starter. Maybe something is loose there. If I remember correctly, only one negative cable connects to one post and the three others connect to the other post. That right?

Or, maybe I'll have to wait until Mars is rising and the moon is waning... Chicken bones maybe??

Thanks guys.
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  #11  
Old December 1st, 2006, 12:38 AM
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Ken Loy
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Success!! I shoulda remembered one of the most valuable tools in the toolbox is a hammer.

I did all the stuff you guys recommended, checked voltages, ran jumper cables directly to the starter, and the two things that I think did the trick were banging on the solenoid and reconnecting the cables to the solenoid.

Let's just hope it starts up in the morning, too!

Thanks again, John, for steering me away from the amplifier module. Saved me $$ and time.
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