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So, driving home tonight the truck was running great until I was about 3/4 of the way home. Then the truck just randomly died. Lights stayed on, battery connections are solid, no engine code, just dead. Here's the weird thing. After it died, it took about five minutes and then it would start right up. BEFORE that five minutes was up, there was absolutely no power to the starter. No click, no grind, just nothing. My question to you guys is, what the hell could it be? I'm at a loss. I mean, POSSIBLY a ground wire, but then I would think it would kill the battery too and there would be no lights... I'm just at a loss. Let me know.

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I don't have a voltmeter :( ... Nevertheless, it just doesn't turn the starter when I turn the key, like, no click, no wind, just absolutely nothing. If I let it sit a few minutes it will engage the starter and start right up. I was thinking faulty wiring somewhere, but it's so intermittent that it doesn't make sense (done it twice over three days).

Eagle - Crank or Cam? And would that cause a cut to the power on the starter?

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How does it die?  Sudden or sputter? - - - Next no start, if somewhere practical, begin at starter & work backwards looking for power - - - - Gonna have to get a volt meter or rig up a test light - - - - Inexpensive multimeters everywhere $3-$10 - - eBay HarborFreight Wal Mart . . . . 

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Those ignition switches are garbage anyway. Throw in a push button switch it will cost you ten bucks and that will rule out other problems. I once had a short in some wires that went to the ecu and my truck would randomly die whenever it rained or built up condensation. Check all that and the CPS like stated above.

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Ok, so I haven't been able to find issues yet. But today, the truck died and wouldn't crank at all. The three options I have come to are that it is A) the Crank position sensor, but won't it normally crank when it goes bad and just cut the spark? (anyone have pictures or good descriptions of how exactly to test the CPS with a multimeter? I have the cheapy from Harbor Freight, CEN something). B ) Ignition switch or wiring. But the only way I can think of that would cause it to die as it was running is if there's a connection in the switch or the key cylinder that would short out and cause the power to be killed from the ignition system. If it is the ignition cylinder or switch, how could I connect a starter button with a switch to ensure that the battery doesn't die from constant on? Or C) A bad starter/solenoid, but how could that possibly kill the truck as you're driving?

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Ok, so I haven't been able to find issues yet. But today, the truck died and wouldn't crank at all. The three options I have come to are that it is A) the Crank position sensor, but won't it normally crank when it goes bad and just cut the spark? (anyone have pictures or good descriptions of how exactly to test the CPS with a multimeter? I have the cheapy from Harbor Freight, CEN something). B ) Ignition switch or wiring. But the only way I can think of that would cause it to die as it was running is if there's a connection in the switch or the key cylinder that would short out and cause the power to be killed from the ignition system. If it is the ignition cylinder or switch, how could I connect a starter button with a switch to ensure that the battery doesn't die from constant on? Or C) A bad starter/solenoid, but how could that possibly kill the truck as you're driving?

 

 

You obviously haven't ever clicked on the link in my signature....

 

Start with the ground refreshing, the 13th write-up.

 

Then the 7th post, connector refreshing.

 

CPS testing is the 9th post.

 

Do these in the order presented above. 

 

The 15th post, Coil/ICM contacts.

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Ok, so I haven't been able to find issues yet. But today, the truck died and wouldn't crank at all. The three options I have come to are that it is A) the Crank position sensor, but won't it normally crank when it goes bad and just cut the spark? (anyone have pictures or good descriptions of how exactly to test the CPS with a multimeter? I have the cheapy from Harbor Freight, CEN something). B ) Ignition switch or wiring. But the only way I can think of that would cause it to die as it was running is if there's a connection in the switch or the key cylinder that would short out and cause the power to be killed from the ignition system. If it is the ignition cylinder or switch, how could I connect a starter button with a switch to ensure that the battery doesn't die from constant on? Or C) A bad starter/solenoid, but how could that possibly kill the truck as you're driving?

First, going back to a previous post, you have an '89. That's a Renix. The Renix system doesn't throw codes -- at least, not that anyone can read without the very expensive dedicated scan tool that even the old Jeep dealers have thrown away by now.

 

On to your questions:

 

1. CPS -- Engine would still crank, just no spark.

 

2. Ignition switch -- strong possibility.

 

3. Starter solenoid -- that would cause a no crank, but could not cause a random die-out.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you guys so much for all of your help. I was able to track it down to the switch. I am working on getting the upgrades done to it from Cruiser's advice. After two days of fighting, I was able to get the ignition switch out, replace it because it looked like someone got in there before me and bent it all to $#!&. I replaced the lock cylinder for good measure and will be replacing the cap, rotor, coil, and ignitor in the next few weeks, especially as I go through the truck and catch up to Cruiser's stuff. I truly appreciate all of you who helped me.

 

BTW, for those curious, when I got into the ignition and could see the problem, there was one harness that was barely attached to the ignition switch and would not plug back in. New switch in and all issues are gone! Thank you. I cannot tell you how much it means to me that I could get the help and get it fixed.

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