A common problem is a cracked cam on the end of the ignition switch lock cylinder. That prevents the switch from turning all the way to the "crank" position even though the key appears to go all the way. The dealer's parts department has a repair kit so you don't have to replace the cylinder, although they can make you a new one of those too that uses your existing keys. If this is the cause of the problem, you can prove it by popping the plastic cover off the starter relay, reinstalling the relay, and squeezing the contact.
There is a different common problem with worn solenoid contacts in the starter but you would be hearing one kind of loud clunk each time you turned the ignition switch to "crank". Those contacts can be replaced for 20 bucks but most people just replace the entire starter. It will crank eventually if you keep trying it enough times but it will also get progressively worse over a period of weeks or months.
Thursday, November 25th, 2010 AT 5:52 AM