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Old 07-01-2011
Fenech627's Avatar
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99 Ranger- Random No Starts/Electrical issue?

Hey everyone,

As the title suggests I have a question regarding my 99 ranger (Specs are below) (approx. 143k miles).

I can trace some starting issues back to about 2 months ago. The problem is when trying to start the truck all power goes out. No lights, dings or any sign of power, except, an interference noise that comes out of a CB radio mounted in the cab. The radio is not functional or used but is hooked up to power. I found that when the interference noise was coming out of the CB a tap to the brake pedal ended the sound. Once I let off the pedal the interference began again. Since I have pin pointed the CB radio as making the noise I have turned the device off, but, it is still connected to the power source. --Now on to what I have done so far--

Every time it has happened to me thus far I have been in my driveway (knock on wood). I end up pulling out the jumper cables and getting my brothers car hooked up to start it. Each time I have done that I get no spark on the battery when hooking up the cords and the cords were tested to see if they conduct and are good. Most of the time the truck will sit or a few minutes or few hours and start right up again. (It even happened a few minutes after the power drain I noticed my dome light turned on with the door open). About a week ago I jumped in my truck to go somewhere and I had no start. The next day I looked at it and again no start. So I ruled out the battery by testing it at the store. They said it is good but shows 50% charge. I took the battery from the store to my house and completely reconnected the clamp which connects to the positive terminal. As soon as I put the negative clamp back on the battery I had spark which I knew meant a good connection. I jumped in the truck tested all the lights and fired it right up. I drove the truck around a little and for the weekend all was good. Then Tuesday morning I was pulling out of my driveway to go to work and as soon as I was in drive the truck stuttered and turned off. (Everything was out: No power steering, lights, radio etc.) This time I had enough and called a wrecker to take it to the Ford service center. Of course the truck sat all day and was not looked at until the next morning.......and of course it started up when the tech went to look at it. (not blaming the techs but its my trucks stubbornness) They ran diagnostics but the truck was running good and they couldn't find anything wrong with it. I had them keep it for a little and run local errands with it but no issues arose.

Now I have the truck back in my garage and will only keep it there or close to home because I know the issue will come back up in a matter of starts. The dealer is closed for the holiday until Tuesday morning so if it poops out anytime this weekend I'm just gonna have to tow it home.

Any suggestions on what you guys may think? I am still going to take it back when it happens but would like to get input from you guys. I basically ruled out the battery, alternator and starter. I feel like its an electrical issue and the interference from the CB is one reason why. Only thing that confuses me is the CB has been in there for probably close to 2 years when J Higgs installed it. Never a problem. My moms Buick had a problem with an ignition module sensor and showed the same symptoms. I asked the service associate about that and he didn't think 99's have that.

Thanks guys, looking forward to hopefully getting some feedback.
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Old 07-01-2011
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Mine did it too. I think I pretty much fixed it, but since she hasnt ran since september I can't really say. I would always get mine to start by cleaning off the battery terminals. But i am interested to see what the solution to your problem is, as it could help me out too.
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Old 07-01-2011
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Northern IL
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Pull the terminals and clean them with the wire brush tool for the job. Just because you ruled it out, don't be stubborn and not do the 5 min maintenance task.

I am at 160k with an issue like this but less frequent. Either my terminal is loosening or I have bad power wire to the starter. Once running my truck will not die.

After that you should look at all the grounds under the hood. The should look clean and the wire not brittle if they are these are weak points for current. Being in the land of winter salt I am willing to bet you have a corrosion issue with some wiring.
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