OK SO AFTER THE STARTER ISSUE THE OTHER DAY ITS ...
2000 Dodge Ram
January, 14, 2013 AT 11:55 PM
Ok, so after the starter issue the other day, its been running fine, except whenit gets warm it wont start again. So lastnight I was poking around, and found that when it is warm and I try to start it the smoke comes from the ground strap from the motor to the firewall/hood area and is very hot after turning the key for just a few seconds. So tonight I was out and it cooled down and when I went to start it it wouldnt start, didnt see any smoke but could smell it and the ground strap was very hot, I wiggled it a little bit (not rough) and it crumbled in my hand, now I dont even get a crank just turn the key and nothing. Obviously I need to replace the ribbon wire there, but why would the ground be getting hot like that, and is that ribbon wire that important to starting the truck.
That is a body ground, but I believe the ground from the battery to the engine block is more important when starting. Have you checked it?
January, 15, 2013 AT 2:05 AM
No havent checked that yet. Will do first thing tomorrow after work. Now is that where the body ground connects to? On the engine block, same spot as battery? Perhaps the ground from the battery is no good and in turn grounded through the body ground, and not being a good enough ground source "shorted" it and burnt it? I am going to trace the battery ground anyway to make sure. Or is something else causing it to burn like that? And just curious might this have been my problem all along and not the starter? Dont matter either way as I replaced the starter last week. And it worked sort of, as I only drive the truck to work (less than a mile) and home and park it. But today had some other stuff to do and thats when it quit/broke the wire. But even since replacing the starter it cranked slowly and after I drove it it wouldnt start it only clicked like a dead battery and then after 2 or 3 tries wouldnt do anything.
January, 15, 2013 AT 2:14 AM
There are several body grounds. My concern is the one to the engine block. Check it to make sure it is clean and tight. Think about it, The starter is bolted to the trans which inturn is bolted to the engine. That ground should be the best one on the vehicle.
January, 15, 2013 AT 2:24 AM
So I obviously need to replace the burnt/broken one from the hood/firewall to the engine block, and also check the ground from the battery to the engine block, which is essentially the same end point on the engine block? I will look at it tomorrow. If they are going to the same point (engine block) are those the only two that connect there? If so, i'll just replace both to be safe, dont think they cost very much and would be better to do both at once as it looks like a pain to get to the bolt on the engine block., This should be fun
January, 15, 2013 AT 2:33 AM
Let me now what you find.
January, 15, 2013 AT 2:35 AM
January, 15, 2013 AT 2:39 AM
OK----THIS HOLDS TRUE FOR ABOUT ANY VEHICLE
THE POSITIVE BATTERY CABLE GOES TO THE STARTER----IN SOME WAY OR ANOTHER
IT NEEDS A GOOD STRONG GROUND
SO WE GROUND THE BATTERY DIRECTLY TO THE ENGINE
DEPENDING ON THE VEHICLE WE HAVE ADDITIONAL GROUNDS JUMPING FROM THE MOTOR TO THE FRAMEAND SOMETIMES OFF OF THE NEG BATTERY CLAMP TO THE BODY AND OTHER STUFF----THESE SORTA RUN ALL OF THE ACCESSORIES
NOW THEN.....HERE'S A SCENARIO TO THINK ABOUT
LET'S CUT THE NEG CABLE TO THE ENGINE IN HALF (HYPOTHETICALLY)
WE NO LONGER HAVE THAT FAT CABLE CAPABLE OF 10 BILLION AMPS OF DRAW AND ABLE TO SUPPORT THE NEG SIDE OF THE STARTER'S DEMAND
SO WE TURN THE KEY TO START ANYWAY!
MR. STARTER SAYS, "I NEED A GROUNDLOOKY HERE!!!!THIS LITTLE BITTY STRAP AND 2 16 GAUGE WIRES ON THE BODY GO STRAIGHT BACK TO THE BATTERY!......IN A ROUNDABOUT WAY"
IT'S A LONG WAY......AND TEENY TINY WIRES....BUT IT WILL CONNECT ME BACK TO THE BATTERY!
SMOKE----RED HOT WIRES---FIRE???YES, THAT CAN HAPPEN TOO!!!!!!
NOW BACK TO THE REAL WORLD...........
............CUT THE NEGATIVE CABLE??????
MIGHT AS WELL
---IF THE BATTERY CLAMP IS NOT CONNECTED TO THE FAT CABLE---OR THE CABLE IS LOOSE OR ON A PAINTED SURFACE AT THE ENGINE----OTHER POSSIBILITIES ARE THERE TOO----IT'S THE SAME AS NOT HAVING THE BIG CABLE THERE AT ALL!!!!
SEE THIS LINK----LOOK IT OVER, ALL THE WAY TO THE END
ANY DAMAGED WIRES OR INSULATION WILL NEED ATTENTION....A WIRE HARNESS FIRE KEEPS FEEDING ITSELF AS IT SHORTS MORE AND MORE WIRES!
RETURN WITH GOOD NEWS AND A GRIN!
January, 15, 2013 AT 11:12 PM
Ok so, I put a ground wire on to replace the crispy one. Truck started and I at least got it home. Turned it off tried to start again, nothing. Wire isnt cooked though so thats good. I did notice the 2 ground wires off the battery, one is a lil broken so im gonna replace that tomrrow and the other looks god, the broken one is a small one the goes tothe frame, the big one that looksgood goes to the engine blck on the front. The ground I replace I used a jumper cable wire that I had cut and put the ends on, cleaned the surface I could reach and the other well I couldnt get to it. There is something somewhere (thinking other than that particular ground) that is causing this issue. Just not sure where to go from here other than the ground off the battery, if that dont solve the problem then I have no clue.
January, 15, 2013 AT 11:18 PM
The one that is broken is a body ground strap. The only other thing I want you to have checked is the starter. It could be drawing too many amps. Most parts stores will check it for free.
Keep me updated
January, 15, 2013 AT 11:23 PM
Ok so just saw your reply (medic). Makes sense, and hoping no fires occur. Im going to take the grounds off tomorrow and clean them real good, (the big one from the battery) and make sure it is on a clean surface and a good wire (gonna buy a new one) cause the current big ground wire looks good, for the most part but there are at least 2 of the many itty bitty wires that are broke (just the ones I can see) and the little wire off the battery negative pole is about to fall off with just a couple wiggles, maybe held on by 4-5 itty bitty wires of the many. After I found that today I was thinkig that might be a problem. Only thing that doesnt make sense is that ive been driving the truck for about a year after having the engine replaced and its been fine other than the weak starts, but never had a problem with anything else til now. Is this something that just happens. Because from what I can tell these wires have been broke for some time. Also could the grime and such on the engine interfere with the ground there? ( I know kinda a dumb? But had to ask anyway) should I replace the ground starp I put in today with an actual ground strap or would the jumper cable wire be ok?