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Completely baffled


Grover
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I have a 95 Pathy. My wife and I love it, it's been great, but it's time to sell. I don't think it wants to go. I advertised it, and then the battery went dead. Turns out the alternator needed to be replaced. Advertised it again and the battery was dead again. Replaced the battery (it was 8 years old). Now it won't start. Turn the ignition on and all the dash lights come on, but turn it to 'start' and there is just one very faint click, coming, I believe, from a relay next to the fuse block. It seemed that it was time to have the starter tested. Pulled it off, and sure enough, the starter was not in optimal condition (gear shaft would not stay extended under power). While I figured it was good to know that the starter needed to be replaced, as I was replacing it there was a continuous niggle in the back of my mind that this was not really the issue. Starter installed, turned the key and nothing (except that very faint click near the fuse block). I tested to see if I was getting power to the solenoid and it was good (~16V). I connected the solenoid to the battery manually using a jumper wire and the starter cranked over just like it should. Put the wires back together and tried the ignition again and, you guessed it, nothing.

 

So, any great theories why the starter cranks over when it gets power directly from the battery, but not when the power is coming from the wire? I thought perhaps the connector was not providing a solid connection, so I cut it off and replaced it with an alligator clamp and clamped it directly to the spade on the solenoid wire - same result - nothing.

 

I'm completely baffled. Can't see any logic to this at all.

 

any help?

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from what ive heard it most likely the starter relay

 

 

 

Yes, the starter relay is a very common cause of this problem it is located under the hood on the driver side. Directly behind the EVAP canister there are several relays it will be blue or grey. For manual tranny it will be a double relay and for automatic tranny it will be a single relay. However the automatic still has a second relay called the inhibitor relay that can also cause the problem but less likely, it is also in the same area.

 

 

quoted from someone else

Edited by Kurruppt
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I tested to see if I was getting power to the solenoid and it was good (~16V). I connected the solenoid to the battery manually using a jumper wire and the starter cranked over just like it should. Put the wires back together and tried the ignition again and, you guessed it, nothing.

 

So, any great theories why the starter cranks over when it gets power directly from the battery, but not when the power is coming from the wire?

How are you getting a reading of 16 volts? There shouldn't be anything with that high of voltage and you should have some voltage drop from the battery to the starter, even with a brand new cable.

Either your cable is compromised and not carrying enough current to the starter (or connections are bad), or there might be a relay issue. I don't know the test criteria for them )it might be in the FSM (downloadable from the pinned thread in the Garage section), so hopefully someone will chime in with that.

Also, check your battery ground points at the chassis, frame and engine. Probably not the issue, but easy and smart to rule out.

 

B

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Could be the fusible link right next to your battery. If you pull on those wires and they snap, then they are burnt and need replacing. Same thing happened to me when I replaced my alternator, there was a buzz then a bit of electric smoke. Luckily I saw where the smoke came from so I found out what the problem was.

Symptoms were - headlights work, dash lights dead, clicking noise from relay when trying to turn key.

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I didn't see if this was Auto or Manual, but also check the Inhibitor switch and starter relays, if it's a manual there's a blue/brown relay on the fender area that sometimes goes bad.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I just replaced the ignition switch on my 95. I had random non starting issues, turn the key several times, popular it out, flip it over. Couple more tries. Sometimes a faint click, other times not. Installed the new ignition switch tonight and she starts right up. Something to consider...

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