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View Full Version : HELP! Car won't start after driving 2 miles & parking- have lights, key on get click



89SCfan
07-28-2015, 09:18 PM
Drove car Saturday for an hour locally, no issues, but didn't turn it off. Tonight drove to 7-11 to get slurpees, just two miles away. Came out and went to start but car just did one 'click' sound then nothing. I have all lights, fans, etc. Battery measures 12.0V resting. Tried to jump start, but got same one 'click' sound then nothing. Engine doesn't turn over. I hear the brake booster pumping up, but not sure if I hear the fuel pump kick on when the key is turned. I pulled the battery out and took it home to put on the charger. It draws a heavy 5 amps and stays there.

Does that mean my battery is bad even though the voltage is reasonable 12.0V?

Will the fuel pump prime every time the key is turned even if pressure is already up? Any suggestions what to look for?

The only thing I can think to do right now is charge the battery till the amp draw drops off, then try it in the car again. If that doesn't work, I will have to have it towed 2miles back to my house so I can work on it in more depth at my leisure.

figulaz
07-28-2015, 09:43 PM
Sounds like the starter. I just changed mine on the ranger ..battery was fine...jump didnt help. Pulled it out and tested it with jumper cables..the solenoid would push the gear out and make the solid click sound but the run circuit was done. Try starting it with the screw driver at the starter solenoid on the driver side fender...or if its manual push start. If you can get underneath check for solid connections at the starter

zbird1
07-28-2015, 09:46 PM
I had the same issue with my 92 last fall everything worked with the key on but I got nothing when I went to start it. I spent about 300$ changing a bunch of stuff ignition, cables ,relays, ignition switch and I even took the starter out and had it checked. First time it tested ok. Put it back in it started once. I took it back up to Auto zone second time it failed. Put in a new starter and haven't had any problems with it. It's free to have it checked just trying to save you some money. Hope this helps.

89SCfan
07-29-2015, 09:12 AM
Well, I charged the battery overnight. It was down to less than 1/2 amp draw and up to 13.5V this morning. So I took it over to the car, installed and tried to start. No crank! Same thing as last night. I get a single click which sounds like it's coming from the fender solenoid. I hear nothing at the starter. I can hear the fuel pump prime. All fuses look OK. Grounds and battery cables are clean and tight.

I used a screw driver to jump across the two large studs on the fender solenoid to see if the starter would spin and all I get is the click of the starter solenoid, but the starter won't spin. I took a hammer and tapped the starter casing about 4-5 times and tried it again. No luck. starter won't spin with key or jumper of fender solenoid.

So I guess this means my starter died? I plan on removing it, testing in the garage and then having it checked at Autozone before buying a replacement. I hope to attack this again this weekend and get it back on the road soon.

David Neibert
07-29-2015, 11:22 AM
Well, I charged the battery overnight. It was down to less than 1/2 amp draw and up to 13.5V this morning. So I took it over to the car, installed and tried to start. No crank! Same thing as last night. I get a single click which sounds like it's coming from the fender solenoid. I hear nothing at the starter. I can hear the fuel pump prime. All fuses look OK. Grounds and battery cables are clean and tight.

I used a screw driver to jump across the two large studs on the fender solenoid to see if the starter would spin and all I get is the click of the starter solenoid, but the starter won't spin. I took a hammer and tapped the starter casing about 4-5 times and tried it again. No luck. starter won't spin with key or jumper of fender solenoid.

So I guess this means my starter died? I plan on removing it, testing in the garage and then having it checked at Autozone before buying a replacement. I hope to attack this again this weekend and get it back on the road soon.

Check the fitment of the small wire on the starter, AKA trigger wire. Many SCs have a push on spade type connection and if it gets loose the starting will become difficult or you won't get anything at all. Suggest checking it and crimping it and reinstalling and if it's not the problem then I'm 99% certain you need a new starter.

David

KMT
07-29-2015, 11:27 AM
A common issue is the multi-wire ignition switch down on the right side of the steering column - it can come open over time, so at least eyeball it carefully to make sure it's not contributing to your issue. AZ should have new ones.

89SCfan
07-29-2015, 11:43 AM
Thanks for all the feedback and suggestions everyone! I believe it will end up being the starter, because I bypassed the other areas by jumping out the solenoid directly, heard the starter bendix engage, but starter won't spin at all. I'll know more this weekend when I tear it apart.

KMT
07-29-2015, 11:57 AM
As well, don't ignore engine grounds - make sure the cables aren't ancient. Check the one from the pass. side motor mount over to the body and replace it, and clean the contact point on the body, if it shows any corrosion...remember, corrosion can hide under the sheathing, so if in doubt, replace it.

BirdofPrey97
07-29-2015, 12:36 PM
What KMT said, Check the grounds. Easy enough to stick a new ground on the post and run it to the frame or engine and see what happens.

SCarSC
07-29-2015, 02:49 PM
Check the fitment of the small wire on the starter, AKA trigger wire. Many SCs have a push on spade type connection and if it gets loose the starting will become difficult or you won't get anything at all. Suggest checking it and crimping it and reinstalling and if it's not the problem then I'm 99% certain you need a new starter.

David

Mine does this from time to time...it's always this little wire...just lay on the ground on the passenger side and look up to make sure this wire is connected.

89SCfan
08-02-2015, 12:07 AM
I replaced the starter with a brand new REMY starter from Rock Auto. And the SC is back on the road :D!

I found out the starter that failed was a 1990 replacement (per markings on it) some time in this SC's past.

Anyway, I'm back on the road!

SCarSC
08-02-2015, 06:19 AM
thanks for the update...good to see someone comment on a problem resolution.