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Thread: Click-No-Start (Starter, Ignition Switch and other Culprits)

  1. #21
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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    The starter has 2 wires going to it, the large battery cable & the smaller trigger wire. If you got a mechanic's remote starter switch, all you have to do is unhook the small wire (pulls right out of the starter), put one clip of the switch to the vacant starter terminal, and put the other clip to the stud for the big wire. Now when you push the button the starter will crank. If the starter goes "click" then the problem is in the starter. If it cranks, then the problem is in the trigger wire circuit. If you mess around with this, I'd recommend not making it permanent. Switches like this are helpful for troubleshooting, but not as a permanent solution. Bad things can happen if the vehicle is started accidentally at a bad time. Vehicle could also be started in gear.......with you underneath it......stuff like that can ruin your whole day.

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    Tim

    Pretty much what I had in mind. A have a momentary plunger switch(30A) from another project that isn't in use right now. I was planning on using that with some 14 gauge wire for the time being. My plan was to splice into the ignition wire for one side and the starter solenoid for the other. Although the link you provided looks good for diag I need a slightly more useable solution. The starter is less than a year old. I pulled it the other day and it benched fine. I'm positive it's the neutral safety switch at this point.

    The only other thing I can think of is to bypass the neutral safety switch. That seems like it would be more involved than just doing the starter bypass.

  3. #23
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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    The way to test it is to have somebody try to crank while you're checking voltage at the starter trigger wire. If it reads more than 2 volt less than actual battery voltage (during the same scenario), then you'll want to track the circuit backwards towards the power source until you find the place that's losing volts. 2 most likely places are the starter switch and the neutral safety switch. Of course every connection point is a potential trouble spot. Sometimes you'll find "accumulated losses" (little bits of loss at multiple locations). Tim

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    That's been tested. Like I said it's doing the click full time now. I've got the better part of 6 hours after work into it at this point. The voltages are all within acceptable tolerance. That's why I'm sure it's the NSS. Just so you understand the steps I've taken a used this post of yours to trouble shoot. As well as most stuff burntboot has posted in numerous threads. I can't find any fault in the sytem other than the NSS. And ,honestly, right now I can't afford to replace it. That will change in a few months but I'd rather have use of the van in the meantime.

    EDIT: Sorry about the crappy link. I'm two tired to fix it right now but click the p in post. lol

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    So how many volts are at the starter trigger wire when it goes click?

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    It reads about 11.7 give or take a few hundreths. According to your post I thought that to be acceptable. If you think not I'll start chasing wiring. Maybe not until next week though as it's hitting 104 here for the next few days.

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    11.7 is good. Sounds like a bad starter. It does happen, I've seen it a few times. Pull the cover where the plunger and contacts are. If there's a problem with any of these parts, replace them. If they look good, replace the starter.

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    I should have mentioned pulling and benching the starter has been done. It benched fine. Hence why I think it's the neutral safety switch. Have you seen many go bad or do you really think I'm barking up the wrong tree?

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    If you have 11.7 Volts at the starter trigger wire and all it does is click, assuming the starter case is grounded, the problem is in the starter. If the starter case isn't properly grounded, that could explain a few things. Check your battery ground cable. It goes from the battery to the frame, then over to the driver's side motor mount bolt. If there's any corrosion, loose connections, frayed wires, etc, replace it. the stock ground cables are okay when everything is new & shiny. They can become the source of issues like yours when they become 20 something years old. Here's a few pics of my old cable next to a new one I made up.






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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    Tim

    First thanks for pointing to the starter. I'm so stressed for time my brain seems to be not functioning. If I have good voltage at the starter wire than it can't be the NSS. I don't know how I managed to miss that. lol

    As far as the ground wires go I replaced them all about a year and a half ago when I was going through the charging issues. I used 4 gauge instead of the factory 8 but I'll get under and double check them again. I'll also pull the starter again and inspect it more closely. I still can't figure out how it's benching and not engaging when in the vehicle.

    As always thanks for the insight and catching my error.

  11. #31
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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    It's not common, but as a mechanic I've had starters before that would bench test good but not function in the vehicle. Bench testing provides the starter with "best case scenario" when it comes to trigger wire voltage, large wire voltage, and the fact it's operating at no load. Sometimes a starter with a problem will function in such an environment, but not in the "real world" environment the van provides. You should also take a very good look at both battery terminals and the positive wire from the battery to the starter. Tim

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    And the results are in.
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    Ground wire issues. Not the ones most users would think of. With a couple of amps, inverter, and a dedicated charging solenoid, all hooked up to a marine battery.


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    The second amp is to the left on this photo. The charging solenoid is visible directly under the amp.

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    Here's a bad shot of the full system. Notice the detached grounds from both amps and the marine battery?

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    Notice again how crappy these ground leads are? That's why I detatched them. There has to be a better way.

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    So the better way, for me, was to wire both the amps to the marine battery negative. Then find a solid ground for the marine negative. Tim, you can hate me later for the ground I've used. It was the shortest route. You guessed it. The seat belt holder.

    If I get shocked I'll know why.

    Long story even longer now. When I first tested the van after my charging circuit issues it had 13.35 at the battery and the solenoid. Now it has an astonishing 14.25. Grounds do matter. And it takes a van geek such as yourself to point that out to the rest of us wanna be van geeks.

    When the toaster has run it's course it's yours. Even if I have to drive it up there.

    More thanks than you know.

  13. #33
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    Re: Ignition switch question.


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    Re: Ignition switch question.




    and


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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    Quote Originally Posted by thetoaster View Post
    f it doesn't send a flat bed to Cali and you can HAVE an 89 Cargo van. lol

    As always thanks in advance for the help.

    Quoting myself here to thank Tim again for the oversight on my end. I'm also quoting myself here because I didn't include body shots of the toaster in this thread. . Being a man of my word and thankful for all the issues he(and others) have helped me resolve, and knowing in other threads, Tim has expressed interest in owning a cargo van I fell complied to post thetoaster in full frontal. So here's the rest of my 89 cargo van(2wd).

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    Sorry about the photos taking with my phone being horizontally challenged. Rest assured I'm on the phone with Google, the NSA, and the sites servers to find out who is really to blame for this visual blunder. lol

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    Thanks for this great write up! I too have recently had a van won't start issue, my click sounded like "mulunk" from both the steering column and up near the glove box. Had it towed into my mechanic, not the starter, needs a neutral safety switch. May be available from Toyota for about $300, plus install. There is an Airtex/ Wells part available off rock auto for $145 plus shipping. There are a couple of vans at near pick n pulls, that are automatics. My questions are several. How often does this switch die? Can I pull it off a used van and expect it to last a while? ( my van has 207,000 miles, is this a freak failure?) If I can't go used, can I go with the rock auto one for half the price? Thanks!

  17. #37
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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    I've had several vans with more miles & have never had a neutral safety switch fail. I'm sure it happens, but just not very often. I wouldn't hesitate to trust a used one........even a well used one. Tim

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    Re: Ignition switch question.

    I got a neutral safety switch for $200 plus $27 shipping From toyota parts overstock online. Right after I ordered it, I pulled one from a used van from a pick n pull ( helps me learn how to install it). Installed the new one, van starts up. I can sell you the old one I pulled for what I got it for plus shipping. My email is fmchester@gmail.com

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    Left for Japan for 2 months and now I turn the key and get 1 click.... fml

    just charged the battery today and going to put it in tomorrow, pretty sure Im going to get 1 click again. Van isnt throwing codes either

  20. #40
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    Re: Left for Japan for 2 months and now I turn the key and get 1 click.... fml

    Highwind, I had that happen to a van sitting for about that time here in Fla also. I knew the battery was good, I remembered toying with the transmission shifting and actually got it to turn over. I went from neutral to park as I was holding the key all the way forward a few times and its worked. I'm not sure what damage I could be doing but so far so good. I've also tapped on the starter with a hammer (lightly) as someone else is turning the ignition over and got them to go. Sorry this infos' hillbilly but its worked for me..

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