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Truck won't start..

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by THE-SYNDICATE, Dec 12, 2010.

  1. THE-SYNDICATE
    Joined: May 13, 2003
    Posts: 802

    THE-SYNDICATE
    Member

    So this is odd....

    I jumped in my truck yesterday and hit the key as normal... Click then nothing. Hit the key again and still nothing... Not even a click?? So, I pop the hood open and there is a faint wif of something electrical but I can't tell where it would have come from?? I have not had 1 bit of trouble from this thing since it has hit the road and I'm stumped as to what's going on... All the wiring is new and its a Rebel Harness. I inspected all that I can see as far as the harness goes and it seems fine. Nothing was warm etc....

    Break out the Volt Meter and start checking.

    1. Battery is at 12 Volts
    2. No Arc'ing when disconnecting the ground wire so this tells me there is no short or outstanding draw on things?
    3. Power to the alt stud. 12 Volts.
    4. Power to the ignition switch term. 12 Volts.
    5. Power to the Coil when the switch is turned to the on/run position. 12 Volts.
    6. Verified the coil is hot when the switch is in the on/run position.
    7. Power to the Start Solenoid Wire When the switch is moved to the "Start" position.

    Hmmm.... But nothing happens....

    So I jack the bitch up and pull the starter. Take some jumper cables and hook the starter up for a bench test. It seems to work fine! jump the bat term to the solenoid term and it kicks right on. So does my spare starter. So I put the starter back in and hook all the shit back up. Still nothing...

    Now... I will say this. I turned on the dome light last night and it was extremely dim. Leading me to believe that I might not really be reading 12 volts from the battery. Regardless I said Fuck It last night and figured I would tackle it again today...

    One question about a fuseable link... I have never had one fail... But do they FAIL like NO MORE CURRENT or do they Soft Fail... Like some current then none??? I would assume the term FUSE would tell me they go out completely but just thought I would ask...

    Thanks!

    Robert M.
     
  2. choptvan
    Joined: Mar 19, 2010
    Posts: 2,161

    choptvan
    Member

    When you checked the voltage at the battery how did you test it? If you alternate and check the + and - by touching the + terminal and - battery cable and vice versa it will tell you if you have a good connection or not. Just the slighest bit of difference will tell you if your connection is good or if your calbe has corrosion. Also if your terminals are tight enough.
     
  3. thunderbirdesq
    Joined: Feb 15, 2006
    Posts: 6,850

    thunderbirdesq
    Member

    Starter solenoid. If you're getting power to the slave side (battery cable) and to the trigger (s) terminal when you turn the key to "start", it should click.
     
  4. flatford39
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 2,622

    flatford39
    Member

    Sounds like a bad ground to me. Try replacing the ground strap and see what happens.
     
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  5. Francisco Plumbero
    Joined: May 6, 2010
    Posts: 2,536

    Francisco Plumbero
    Member
    from il.

    Try either putting in a different battery and trying it or take your battery to a place that can put a load test on it, it may well be able to spin the starter when it is free, but unable to concentrate enough load to turn the engine over. Try charging your battery for a few hours before you go crazy. If it still does it load test it.

    It may well be a ground issue, good advice, try cleaning any and all.
     
  6. rottenrods
    Joined: Sep 17, 2010
    Posts: 211

    rottenrods
    Member

    Did you check your ground? My old man always said 99% of electrical problems are because of a groud,I don't think that's acurate but it does happen alot
     
  7. mopar210
    Joined: May 18, 2008
    Posts: 392

    mopar210
    Member

    sounds like a ground concern to me . hook up a redundant ground . how many body to chassis grounds (never too many as far as im concerned , i have 4) engine to chassis ground also ? take your jumper cables and run the ground and then check the dome lamp brightness . in all my years in the car business i have seen grounding problems cause this many - many times .
     
  8. THE-SYNDICATE
    Joined: May 13, 2003
    Posts: 802

    THE-SYNDICATE
    Member

    Cool. Thanks for the quick responses! I'm pretty damn sure the ground is good, but I will check it... I'm also going to ring out the starter solenoid wire from the switch all the way down to the starter just to double check...

    More news soon...

    Robert M.
     
  9. refried confusion
    Joined: Nov 14, 2010
    Posts: 277

    refried confusion
    Member

    _______________
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2012
  10. MEDDLER1
    Joined: Jun 1, 2006
    Posts: 1,593

    MEDDLER1
    Member

    Did you get any clicking sounds at all? My first guess is solenoid that has happened to me more than once. As for the fuseable link, I had a starting issue on a truck once where the motor would turn over for excessive amounts of time before the engine would start. Then all of a sudden there was nothing the fuseable link had been so hot (from bad grounds) that it wouldn carry enough current to do the job. It did not break completely. We added a couple more grounds and cleaned the ONE ground he had on the truck. No more problems!I hope that helps you out. Bummer to hear your having issues man, Iam too the rears out of mine!
    Tony
    HA HA I re read and saw the clicking stopped. The solenoid man!
     
  11. Don't just check "the" ground ... add some (if you don't already have them). There should be the battery cable ground and you should also have one (or more) from the body-chassis, body to engine block, chassis to engine block etc. As several others here have mentioned "you can't have too many grounds".
     
  12. THE-SYNDICATE
    Joined: May 13, 2003
    Posts: 802

    THE-SYNDICATE
    Member

    Well... I'm thinking it may have been one of those Fuck'ed Off Twilight Zone days.... Or maybe the grounds I'm not sure... But I just walked out side and re-tightened the grounds, checked the battery voltage with a different volt meter. Jumped inside and hit the key.

    WHAMO!!!

    Done deal... runs like a champ... Battery voltage is right at 14.5 after start up and at idle so the Alt is doing it's thing as well.... I'm not sure what went on yesterday but whatever it was it cut into my time for working on other shit.... Thanks for all your help on this fine Sunday!

    Back to other projects....

    Cheers,

    Robert M.
     
  13. willowbilly3
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 4,356

    willowbilly3
    Member Emeritus
    from Sturgis

    Aren't you a little worried the problem isn't really gone and will crop up again at some inopportune time?
     
  14. THE-SYNDICATE
    Joined: May 13, 2003
    Posts: 802

    THE-SYNDICATE
    Member

    Well Kinda Sorta... This morning everything went smooth as can be and I'm really thinking back thru the chain of events and settling in on the potential Ground Issue. I am replacing the ignition switch as a preemptive move because I never really liked the first one I installed. Always acted funny when you turned the key OFF. Sometimes it was OK and sometimes it would try to engage the starter again... So I will swap that for good measure. I talked with Rebel wire yesterday to get a better understanding of what I was seeing with the OHM meter here and there which also made me more relaxed. The truck has been on the road now for about 6 months and I do drive it everyday. It has now also started to see its first few rain storms. I'm willing to bet these guys who mentioned the ground as the potential issue are correct. Too many things last night pointed at that. And being that I have been bounced around of these bitchin California Roads a few things are bound to be loose and or splashed with water... I might grab an additional starter solenoid as well just to toss behind the seat but I'm pretty sure that's not the issue.

    For now I'm happy and feel'n confident that I've got things licked... Thanks Again to everyones quick response!!!

    ~Robert M.
     
  15. Ebbsspeed
    Joined: Nov 11, 2005
    Posts: 5,083

    Ebbsspeed
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Well, he did say he tightened the grounds, so maybe that was the issue.

    Robert, how loose were they?
     
  16. THE-SYNDICATE
    Joined: May 13, 2003
    Posts: 802

    THE-SYNDICATE
    Member

    The Negative to the cab was tight but the Block to the cab needed a good synch... I'm going to pop into the Battery House either today or tomorrow and have one more cable made that goes from the Current Cab Grounding Lug down to the ground strap on the bell housing. This way the battery is basically linked direct with the block and the cab. The current ground situation is battery to Cab Lug, and then Block to lower cab lug. All grounding going thru the Cab. This will just provide a more direct path to the block. Should help... Can't hurt.... I'm thinking this is the way I did it on my '68 PU??? I remember MSD ignition calling for a direct ground to the motor to eliminate any possible issues. I didn't do that with this build but will correct it shortly.

    Cheers,

    Robert M.
     
  17. Ebbsspeed
    Joined: Nov 11, 2005
    Posts: 5,083

    Ebbsspeed
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    For best results, there should always be a ground from the battery post directly to the engine block. If you go from batthery to cab, then cab to block, you have twice as many potential points of failure, not to mention more resistance than if there were a single heavy ground cable directly from the battery to block.
     
  18. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,758

    tommy
    Member Emeritus

    AMEN! The battery cable is large to carry the amperage necessary to start the engine. Any mechanical connection in the loop from the battery to the starter and back to the battery is a place for corrosion and potentially added resistance.

    In my case the added resistance wasn't a problem until the engine was warm and drew more amperage. I'll never make that mistake again.

    PS I laid on my back in the parking lot on a day like today, 20* 20 mph winds, changing the starter motor only to hear it click again with the new starter. I used a pen knife to clean the battery terminals and drove on to work.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2010
  19. This kind of jumped off the page at me. I have no idea how your new wiring kit is laid out, but are there any junction blocks under the hood or bulkhead connectors passing thru the firewall? Make sure that all the mating connector bodies are properly latched together and that any weather seals between them are in place. And look for any evidence of water running down the firewall near any bulkhead connections. Pull the connections apart and make sure there isn't a bit of corrosion starting to form.
     

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