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  #1  
Old 12-16-2007
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Starter Problem

I have a starting problem that is baffling. It is on a 1993 Ranger Super cab 2wd 4.0. 5 spd. One day 2 wks ago my kid calls me and says he can't start his truck but all lights work. I tell him if he can bump start it, bring it home and I'll try to diagnose it. The battery tests good, The starter tests good, the fender mounted solenoid tests good. I checked for corrosion and cleaned the terminals and coated them again with dielectric grease. I checked for voltage at the fender mounted solenoid with minimal voltage drop. I also checked the starter for voltage drop the stater is losing about 1/2 volt with the switch turned to start. both solenoids are receiving power when the switch is turned to start. I can feel them. In desperation I replaced the fender mounted solenoid. The starter was replaced(warranty) because I'm running out of ideas. My next step is the replacement of the positive and negative battery harnesses for a hundred bucks from the dealership. If anyone has had this same problem please let me know what you did to fix it. My kid needs his truck to go back to college in a couple of weeks and I don't want to pay a mechanic's rate to fix it.
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Old 12-16-2007
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If the truck is an auto transmission, check the neutral safety switch located on the transmission where the shifter connects. If it is a manual transmission, check the clutch pedal position switch located under the dash directly on the pedal assembly. If the truck is an auto tranny, set the emergency brake, turn the key on, shift it into neutral and try to start it, if it starts, the nss may just need to be adjusted.
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  #3  
Old 12-17-2007
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I think the clutch switch is working, because if you don't push the clutch in there are no audible clunks from the solenoids, and as soon you push the clutch in you can hear them clunk.
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Old 12-17-2007
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Check all of your grounds also. Are you sure the engine isnt seized?
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  #5  
Old 12-17-2007
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Grounds are clean and tight and you can bump start the truck fine. I also put a wrench on the crank pulley bolt to see if the engine was tight and no problems.
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  #6  
Old 12-17-2007
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A real quick test is to pull the lights on and try to start it. If the lights go off or dim down heavily and the starter relay clicks repeatedly its probably a low battery or bad connection. If they dont dim at all then its an open circuit somewhere. Check across the relay to make sure your getting power to the starter side when you turn the key to start. Check at the starter B+ term to make sure its tight and your getting power with the key in start. If you know for sure the battery is fully charged, the relay is working properly, and the lights dim heavily, then I would suspect the start is frozen or the engine is sized.

If you have a set of jumper cables hook the battery + straight to the relays starter side terminal and see what happens.
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  #7  
Old 12-23-2007
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Fix

Had the same type of problem. My daughter who is in college 500 miles away gives me a call 2 months ago and says her truck ( 99 with a 4.0 auto ) wont start just a "click" Long story short she had the truck towed to the local ford dealer and they replaced the starter at a cost of $275.00 which killed me because I do all my own work and know what is involved (not much) well she came home from school for xmas and last night same problem shows up, go to start and just a click that's when I found this site. So this morning I start to check things and find the red wire that goes to the solenoid on the starter has a spade connector on it, while it seemed tight upon further testing it was found that this connection was the problem. My theory is after time and at different tempetures this hard plastic around this connection expands and contracts, some times making a connection and some time not. Anyway I have replaced the connection and all seems good for now. Hope this helps somebody else out. Merry Christmas
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  #8  
Old 12-24-2007
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Thanks for all the suggestions. I decided to cut into the battery cable harnesses and check for corrosion. I found several of the smaller wires on both the negative and positive cables corroded so I ordered them both new from the dealer. After pulling both harnesses out together and re-wrapping the new ones as the factory had done, I was able to install everything as original. The truck starts fine now. As an added bonus the power windows work again so I don't have to tackle them.
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  #9  
Old 12-24-2007
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I have found corrosion to be the culprit many times . corrodes inside the insulation .
I have founds an inexpensive in excellent repair , that won't require replacing the factory harness .
Honda civics , accords , etcetera , have a cable splice block .
I have used many of these , they are a cable , with about 6" of cable , and then a led collar , with a plastic housing , and screw lug to hold the cable .
I use dielectric grease when I assemble them , and have saves a ton of time and money .
Do some jy scrounging .
Ashley
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  #10  
Old 12-27-2007
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Hi I currently have the same problem. I have replaced the Starter, Starter solenoind, Battery, Battery harnesses (worked for a week) And now all I get is the solenoid clicking again..... Any advice?
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  #11  
Old 12-27-2007
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Yes, somewhere you have a bad connection or terminal crimp. You can take a volt meter and test the voltage at the starter terminals to see what it is when you try to start it. If the voltage is low, like 9v. or less, then start checking at each place the wires or cables terminate at going back toward the battery. At some point in the search the voltage should be what ever the battery voltage is on one side and low on the other side. That is where your problem is.

I have found corrosion inside crimped terminals that was not visiable outside. I have found battery cable ends that looked good but inside they were corroded or if soldered the solder joint was defective.

It's not always easy to find even when you find where the voltage drop is located.
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