07 pacifica: starter intermittent.

Last Edited By Krjb Donovan
Last Updated: Mar 11, 2014 07:46 PM GMT

Question

QUESTION: Have a 2007 Pacifica, touring 4.0, 88K. Periodically when starting the car it will just "Click" like the battery is dead, but all lights on the dash board are on, stereo works, etc. If I pull the key back and try it again the car will start no problem and run like a champ. Thought it must be the starter as the battery tested good, the dealership agreed, and had the starter replaced yesterday. Today it happened twice, first attempt to turn the engine over, "Click", pull the key back and try again starts just fine. The dealership has no clue and wants me to leave it for a few days. Do you have any idea what could be the cause? The problem started around February this year. Other than this issue the car runs and drives great, very happy with the Pacifica. Thanks for the help!

Quinn

ANSWER: Hi Quinn, By 'click' I wonder whether you mean a loud click that comes from the switch on the starter motor proper, or a soft click that comes from the starter motor relay in power box under the hood. Have a helper try the key while you listen with the hood open to ID from whence the sound is coming. Then we can focus on the possible reasons for this situation. I think we can fix this. Please 'rate' my answer (see below). Thanks, Roland

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hey Roland,


The biggest issue with trouble shooting this, is it will be fine for three days, five days, a week, no problem then it will happened two or three times is a day then be fine for a while, then it will act up again, it may happen for couple of day in a row. This started back around February this year. I travel to customer sites for my job daily, this car is stopped and started at least 10 times per day on average. The dealership ask me to look at the PRNDL lights on the dash board when this happens, before I pull the key back to see if the circle is around the P or all five letters, the circle is only around the P. BTW, my parents owned a chain of aftermarket car repair shops in Ohio, I grow up working in the shops so I do have a little higher than average understanding of cars and the mechanics behind them. Of course this was back in the day before all the on board computers and electronics!! I do imprecate you knowledge and help with this. Thank you.

Answer

Hi Quinn, The circuit is very conventional for the starter motor. There is one 40 amp fuse (#7) in the power box of the engine compartment that powers the starter motor relay and also the current from that relay that flows to the starter motor solenoid to close that switch. The battery is directly connected to the starter motor through solenoid switch. So it sounds like a matter of checking through the wiring of the starter motor circuit, including the 2 ground wires on the -post clamp of the battery for corrosion, both at the battery and at their far ends where they ground, the ground for the engine proper, and checking the condition of the fat red wire from the + post of the battery to the starter for corrosion, the starter motor relay contact points may be flaky, or fuse #7 may be cracked but not open, the wire from the starter relay to the solenoid switch could be flaky or poorly connected at either end. There is not much else that I can see that is connected to the battery when you initiate the starter via the key so I can't see how the battery could be being dragged down by problems elsewhere. I can copy the circuit for the starter motor and for the ignition switch and you can use that as a road map to trace over the circuit. To do that you need to send me a NEW question, where you click on the box to make it PRIVATE, and then in the text of the question tell me your email address. Then I will send the pages as an attachment to an email I will send to you directly. You have to follow these instructions or I won't learn what your email address is. That is how I would suggest you resolve this issue. Thanks for the rating and nomination. You can do it again for this response if you would be so kind, Thanks, Roland

I am available now if you would like to send me your email address.

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