Question about 1998 Ford Ranger SuperCab

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I can't start the truck with a key I can use a screwdriver to jump it at the solenoid. it must be a loose wire but which one?

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It sounds like a bad starter solenoid try replacing it.

Posted on Sep 03, 2009

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what is year--make--model? Are you saying you jumped the starter solenoid to get it to start? At the starter usually two circuits for cranking, one is battery voltage, hot all the time. The other circuit goes hot with key in the crank position and is wired through either the neutral or clutch switch depending on the tranny.

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Bad solenoid on the starter. Car should keep running tho if the key is on when you jump the solenoid with the screwdriver. If it doesn't, you have other problems, like a bad ignition switch or wiring. NOT the key switch, the one down low on the column the key switch activates.

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Could be a bad starter. Try tapping on it with a large screwdriver or hammer, then try starting. If it starts that time, bad starter.
If you know how to jump the starter solenoid to the starter motor, you could check starter operation. On the solenoid is a purple wire. Use a small screwdriver (key off, car in park) and bridge that post with the purple wire to the large battery terminal on the starter. If starter is good, it will start cranking the engine. If you just get another click, the starter is bad, assuming the battery cable connections are clean and tight.

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check the fuses. its possible he could have popped one when hooking up the Hot wire. if not that then the start solenoid could be bad. but i feel the answer lies with the fuses though

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I'm trying to jump start my 99 F250 7.3l but when I put the jumper cables on the trucks batterys, the truck keeps trying to start on its own. Keys not even in the ignition.


Hi, the likely problem is the hot wire to the solenoid shorted to the start terminal. It's easy to do when tightening the nuts on the solenoid. One of the terminals will twist around and touch the other one. Get under there with a screwdriver and separate the 2 terminations, and you should be good to go.

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Easier to test in the car. Put starter back in the car. First, please try to jump start the car. If it will jump and start, starter is OK. If it will not jump start, go to the starter with a screwdriver. Use the screwdriver to short the big red-wire terminal to the small terminal on the solenoid. Be very careful not to short the big red-wire terminal to anything else, or you will get a big spark. If the battery, starter, and solenoid are good, the car will crank. If it does not crank, try again while jumping the battery to another car. If it cranks, the battery is low or the terminals need to be cleaned and tightened. If you have more questions, please reply.

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98 Ford F150 4.2 Liter Engine will not crank keeps blowing fuse #21 (15amp) as soon as I turn the ignition key. Was running fine just stopped to gas up and it wouldn't crank. Jumped the posts on the...


Sounds like there's a grounded wire somewhere between the ignition switch and the solenoid. When you bypass the switch with the screwdriver you don't ground out the line, but with the switch the ground shorts the circuit, blows the fuse, and then won't start the engine.

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If you've applied 12VDC to the solenoid and it does nothing, not even click, then the solenoid is toast!

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