Question about Dodge Ram 1500

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Truck starts intermittently, when ignition key is turned engine clicks but fails to start. After several attempts the engine will start. After driving approx 10 miles the engine is turned off and the key is re-tried. The engine starts right up. After truck has sat from 1-2 hours when the key is turned it fails to start. The ignition switch and battery have been replaced and the started relay has been checked. What is the underlying cause of the intermittent starting?

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  • edbdjune Sep 08, 2009

    Thank you for your response. This is a 1995 Dodge Ram 1500. Would it be the starter if, once we get it to start and arrive at our destination, then we turn it off, wait a few minutes and then try to start it and it starts right up? Because this happened yesterday, he drove to his location and it repeatedly started on every try. After sitting for several hours is when it has a hard time starting.

  • edbdjune Sep 08, 2009

    It is just making the clicking noise when you turn the key if it doesn't start. This morning it started right up, first try and has turned right over every time today.

  • edbdjune Sep 08, 2009

    Thank you for your help, we will replace the starter. I will finish the process to Accept your solution. You have been extremely helpful.

  • edbdjune Sep 08, 2009

    This solution was very helpful. This expert worked with me to make sure I had defined the problem correctly so that I would get the right solution.

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If the engine just only clicks ( but not cranking over ), the starter itself maybe the main cause.
Ignition switch and starting relay check out fine. You have already replaced the battery which would rule out the weak cranking amps coming from the battery.
Most auto-parts stores can do a bench test on the starter itself for free. That way you can test it out first before you buy a new one. If it turns out you need to buy a replacement, have them test the new starter before you leave the store. I've gotten a couple of new starters that were bad before.

Posted on Sep 08, 2009

  • Devon Sacco
    Devon Sacco Sep 08, 2009

    Is the truck engine cranking over when it tries to start? Or, is it making a just a clicking noise only when it tries to start?

  • Devon Sacco
    Devon Sacco Sep 08, 2009

    OK. I would say it's the Starter itself then. Over the years use, Starters get weaker and the solenoid wears out. A solenoid is part of the Starter that slides the gear onto the flywheel for it to turn the motor. At the same time the solenoid presses against a set of contacts to engage the Starter motor to turn.



    The clicking noise you hear is the gear sliding out of the Starter, but not sliding far enough to press the contacts like it should. Basically, the solenoid is starting to stick. This would be an intermittent problem for the Starter. And there is really no way of telling when it will finally give out.

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