I've had an intermittent problem starting my 97 Dakota 318 club cab
automatic the last few days. Every once in a while when I turn the ignition
switch to start I get no lights or apparent electrical response of any
kind - I may occasionally see a very dim idiot light but that's it. And it
doesn['t seem to matter whether it's hot or cold. No starter action or gas
pump noise of any kind. So far after several attempts it's started right up
like there had been no problem. And most of the time it starts right up on
the first try. Is this most likely the starter motor, solenoid or something
Thank you for any help you may be able to give.
Last time I had a similar problem there was an intermittent problem with the
ground connection between the display/switch panel that cause the
An aside we also had problems with floating grounds that cause the aluminum
radiator to corrode. (easy to test with a cheap digital volt meter -- any
voltage above a couple of millvolts between the metal and battery ground
post suggest a potential problem)
Thanks Mike and to everyone who responded to assist with this. I cleaned the
battery terminals and sure enough it hasn't happened again. I haven't
checked the battery yet but will do so this weekend. Will post back if the
days when you got plenty of warning that the battery was going - now
there's so little metal in the cell interconnects that they fail open
resulting in total or near-total death.
As others have stated - loose battery connections can also do it.
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