Mechanics

CAR WON'T START

1999 Dodge Durango

Electrical problem
1999 Dodge Durango V8 Four Wheel Drive Automatic 78000 miles

When turning key, you hear a click and nothing happens. Sounds like the starter solenoid is engaging the flywheel but not turning engine over.
I have replaced the starter relay and cleaned the battery terminals and trickle-charged the battery overnight. It has an after-market remote starter but we have it turned off. I tried to start the car with the remote starter with the same result.
I suspect the starter but would like to know if you have any other suggestions.
Thanks very much,
Dan
Avatar
Denghis
April 7, 2009.



Worn contacts in the starter solenoid. $15.00 for the pair. Otherwise just replace the entire starter motor.

To test before replacing, have someone hold the ignition switch in the crank position. Touch a grounded test light to the two large terminals on the starter. The terminal with the heavy battery cable must have battery voltage all the time. The other large terminal, (under a gray rubber cap), should have battery voltage only when in " Crank" mode. If it's missing, the contacts are worn.

Caradiodoc

Caradiodoc
Apr 10, 2009.
Thanks, Cardio.

I checked the cells on the battery (which were all ok) and then just for kicks tried to start it. Kicked right off. Drove it for 10 miles, shut it off and tried it again. Started right up.
Could the starter solenoid have intermittent bad connection? Work fine and then not?

Tiny
Denghis
Apr 11, 2009.
Reread my last reply. Starter solenoid contacts. Very common problem. The intermittent crank will get progressively worse. The final straw with my mother's '95 Caravan was when she lost count after 700 tries and a blister on her thumb before it cranked. This applies to the small, silver Nippendenso starter.

Caradiodoc

Caradiodoc
Apr 11, 2009.
Yeah, Cardio, my wife is always after me to pay attention, too. Sorry.

Thanks for the info. I'd guess that after 78,000 miles I'd better replace the whole thing.

Thanks again.

Tiny
Denghis
Apr 12, 2009.