Question about 1997 Dodge Dakota

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My 1997 Dodge Dakota will crank but not start on cool damp mornings when it is parked outside. It seams to be getting fuel but no spark. I have checked the coil and it is OK. Even on the bottom of the coil where they sometimes are prone to fail. I can get it to start by placing a small electric space heater under the hood for a few minutes which to me indicates that it is a sensor or something getting shorted to ground by the moisture. The underhood area is not noticably wet only damp air. Left sitting in the sun it will start later in the day. Once started it runs fine. Crankshaft position sensor?

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Distributor caps are notorious for doing this (hairline cracks), as are spark plug leads. I usually have a look at night time, to see if any sparks are going where they shouldn't.

Posted on Sep 13, 2009

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This may sound crazy, but more times than not, it's a corroded battery terminal.

Posted on Sep 14, 2009


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Flooded engine

If your car is fuel injected (no carb) then while cranking, try holding the gas pedal to the floor - this should cut off fuel supply to the injectors. If you need to crank multiple times, don't turn the key to the off position - turn back to ACC.

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Welcome to

check spark by pulling a spark plug wire and inserting screw driver init holding the insulator part of screw driver position metal part of it to ground 1/4 away as someone cranks engine

Thank you for using

Regards, Lee Davidian

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Air/fuel/spark. check the 3, and then do a dummy test. I know , im not insulting you, but my dakota wont start if my gascap isnt screwed down all the way, it throws a sensor and it wont start. So just do all the dummy stuff you know has to be done to start it, put it in park, close all the doors, stuff like that, never know, could be something simple. if not, as above, Air/fuel/spark. need all 3 to start an engine.

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