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2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no crank/start


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NaymzJaymz
User

Jun 14, 2015, 5:38 PM

Post #1 of 18 (2338 views)
  post locked   2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no crank/start  

Hello,
The vehicle in question is a 2000 Ford Expedition with a 5.4L Triton motor and 206000 miles. This car has been a warhorse for our family, but this week we've experienced an intermittent no start condition. The vehicle will not turn over on occasion. There is no "click" we commonly associate with a bad starter. I've checked the battery connections, and they appear to be clean and tight. Battery must be fully charged, or it couldn't have sat for 2 days before starting this morning. Oil and coolant levels are normal. There are no warning lights present. When the vehicle does start, it does so immediately and runs fine. A mild shadetree like myself would think towards a starter issue, but why does it start sometimes? I always apologize for the naïve sounding questions. The help I receive is greatly appreciated.


(This post was edited by NaymzJaymz on Jun 19, 2015, 4:05 AM)


Discretesignals
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

Jun 14, 2015, 6:15 PM

Post #2 of 18 (2331 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

Probably should start by having the battery tested to be sure it is good. Also make sure your battery connections are clean and tight. Does this have an aftermarket alarm or remote start system? If this is PATS, is the PATS indicator flashing while your attempting to crank the engine.





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.

(This post was edited by Discretesignals on Jun 14, 2015, 6:17 PM)


NaymzJaymz
User

Jun 15, 2015, 6:48 PM

Post #3 of 18 (2310 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

Thank you, sir. Sorry it took so long for me to respond(16 hour work day). I will follow your advice, as always. If you have time, in my own desire to gain knowledge, could elaborate on what could be wrong with the battery in my situation? Thank you for the help.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Jun 16, 2015, 6:57 AM

Post #4 of 18 (2298 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

OK - DS as we call him wasn't here fast so I'll try not confuse you for this question. I dare say he was suggesting begin ruling things out with the battery and connections first would be a good idea.
Miles/time a no click suggests to me no power getting thru or not available from the battery so it's first IMO too. Then connections along the way to starter itself and ground cable from battery to engine block is as important as any too. It all matters.


If this resets clock and other things when no sound and starter motor requested by key that really suggests a total loss of power even if things look good they need to test good a well. Starter could be involved but if just the starter shouldn't cut out all power to the vehicle - connections or wire failure more likely,


T



NaymzJaymz
User

Jun 17, 2015, 2:20 PM

Post #5 of 18 (2287 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

Thank you, Tom.
I was somewhat interested in what could be happening inside the battery to make it act this way(I know that it's obviously going bad, if it's the battery). I know batteries can behave in funny ways. No, there is no power loss other than to the starter. When the key is moved to the run position the dash lights all come on, then there is no start when key is moved to start position. I was just a bit surprised that I didn't hear any click or feel warm battery cables(the starter isn't warm either) that a mild shadetree like myself might look for with a bad starter. The connections all seem tight. Thanks for your help, Tom. Once again I apologize for the naïve nature of my question, but I have to think that is at least part of what a forum like this is for. Thanks.!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Jun 17, 2015, 3:47 PM

Post #6 of 18 (2283 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

OK - taking odds and intermittent probably NOT the battery itself yet. Usually when they fail they stay failed if shorted inside and if connections that weak all lighting would go out when starter is requested if it got the trigger signal. Next would be to see if the trigger wire at starter solenoid is clean and in place and if it lights up a test light when starter requested. If so and connections there are good, no resets of things or all lighting going out it does point to a bad starter solenoid which comes with a new starter. You can have them tested, just a solenoid but most go for at least a rebuilt.


It might work if you gave the thing a love tap with a hammer but that isn't a fix but a good clue that's the problem,


T



NaymzJaymz
User

Jun 17, 2015, 4:03 PM

Post #7 of 18 (2279 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

Thanks Tom, I think the next step will be to take the starter off and have it tested. The tapping with a hammer had no effect. I've just been told by my wife and son that when the key is in the run position, that the radio will now not function. Any hints there? I probably should have called this thread "2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no crank/no start".


Discretesignals
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

Jun 17, 2015, 5:31 PM

Post #8 of 18 (2275 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

How about the theft indicator? Is it flashing or on when your trying to start the engine?





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.


NaymzJaymz
User

Jun 19, 2015, 4:00 AM

Post #9 of 18 (2257 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

I will check this, sir. Today the car started. A mechanic we know said we should clean the key, which my son did. I think we are on the right track. The mechanic said it could be the ignition switch or the relay. How does this sound to you? Thank you for your response. Sorry it took me so long to answer(another 16 hour work day).


Discretesignals
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

Jun 19, 2015, 6:21 PM

Post #10 of 18 (2224 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

Cleaning the key doesn't do squat. The PATS system, if your vehicle is optioned, uses a transponder in the head of the key that transmits a radio signal to the reciever in the dash when the key is near the steering column. You can clean the key and lock cylinder all day long and it won't fix a PATS issue.

Do you have another key and tried it? Make sure the other key is a PATS key or it won't work.

Once you let us know if the vehicle has PATS or not and the theft indicator isn't on or flashing while your trying to crank the engine, we'll proceed to the next step.





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.

(This post was edited by Discretesignals on Jun 19, 2015, 6:24 PM)


NaymzJaymz
User

Jun 20, 2015, 7:53 PM

Post #11 of 18 (2199 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

The latest chapter is that no, the "theft" light is not flashing during the start attempt. It goes off at the same time the other dash lights go off. Today we turned the key to the run position and jumped the terminals on the relay and the engine started on every attempt. We should now suspect the ignition switch, right? If we get a new key switch assembly(ignition lock cylinder), will that cure the problem? If you have time. could you explain the PATS system, and how do we tell if our car is equipped with it? Stupidly, we only have one key for this car. What would the process of changing this part entail to comply with the PATS system. Thank you, sir.


Discretesignals
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

Jun 21, 2015, 5:45 AM

Post #12 of 18 (2188 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

It is unlikely to be a PATs problem if the theft light goes off after three seconds and stays off while your attempting to crank the engine. There is a lot of info on PATs on the internet. The best way to know if you have PATs is by looking at the key.

How did you jumper the starter relay? Do you have a 12 volt test lamp or mutimeter and know how to use them?

If you move the gear shifter to neutral, will the engine crank?





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.


NaymzJaymz
User

Jun 21, 2015, 4:30 PM

Post #13 of 18 (2178 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

Today we went ahead and changed the ignition switch, following the instructions in the manual. To our dismay, it did not solve the problem. I don't know if we were right to do this, but part was inexpensive and may have been the original switch on 200k+ vehicle, so I think it didn't do any arm. I might note that I also tried to start it by simply moving the pin on the ignition switch, with obviously the same result. To answer the questions you asked a in the last entry:
We jumped the relay in the most primitive way, with a screwdriver. I know that millions have done it this way, but is it going to cause damage? I do have a remote starter somewhere.
Yes, when we put the gear shift into neutral, it does start immediately (when jumped at the relay).
Yes, I do own a Craftsman multimeter. I'm not well schooled with it, but I did test an alternator with it once with the help of some Youtube videos.


I now must go to the next step of trying to find the problem. Could it be the relay itself? Thank you for your patience and continued advice, which I will continue to follow.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Jun 21, 2015, 10:42 PM

Post #14 of 18 (2174 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

Get a dang test light - NAPA even, an LED one for under $10 and check some things. You don't have power getting to the trigger wire it's clear, why is not yet. Maybe it does get to the wire but not the terminal at the solenoid?


So it "hot forced" the starter with a screwdriver in neutral. What does that mean - nothing. It would do that with a starter on the floor if empowered.


IDK, DS has led you and asked you and you aren't sure. You said you work a lot of hours so maybe it would be faster to just send this out if you don't have time for it tools or not.


Know your possible vehicle systems and what they are intended to do factory ones or possible aftermarket. Does this thing stay running with the screwdriver trick at the starter? That "trigger" wire is only needed for the time starter is engaged then does nothing. Probably an eyelet end on a stud. Test light the eyelet for power when requested and see if stud it's on also get power then if not that's the spot. If so or nothing at either that's the issue.


Ignition switch: You should have known if power was sent on to starter before you replaced it or not or did you replace the ignition key/lock and think that was the ignition switch?


If so you may have caused a new problem?


Subject line says this is or was intermittent suggesting the dang trigger wire isn't getting power to the starter as it works with a screwdriver and no that doesn't hurt it if you don't short everything out doing so. DS asked if it worked in "N" to see if a neutral safety switch could be the fault and still could be from what I've read so far. Not putting words in his mouth but that would be a test that either worked or didn't for that info.


Your call. If no time for this and not enough test tools plus don't know if it has theft what or not (any info in glove box or owner's manual?) then send it out and be done with this hopefully in a day.
If this is still playing "intermittent" with you and starts and runs fine sometimes and plain works fine for a tech and nothing for other clues it will be difficult,


T



NaymzJaymz
User

Jun 22, 2015, 7:34 AM

Post #15 of 18 (2157 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

Tom,
I realize that I may be very near the point where I must simply get some outside help from a professional who could solve the problem quickly. I was just trying to save a few bucks, which has already backfired somewhat with the purchase an unnecessary part. I think I will go ahead and get a test light and see what I can find out. I can only gain a bit of new knowledge. I mentioned earlier that my questions must seem naïve to people like yourself and DS, but this is the internet age, and hopefully a forum like this will help a guy like me. Thank you for your help.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Jun 22, 2015, 7:50 AM

Post #16 of 18 (2156 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

We are trying to help you. IDK the current or local price of one of these but would be handy and end a guessing game right at the starter........... Pic if it shows below........

That one was once $5+ at WallyWorld and works fine. Alligator clip under that red boot shown you clip to ground and like a scratch awl end to item to test for power if present lights the handle.


No kidding. That trigger wire at the starter could light the light on the wired eyelet to wire but not make it to the stud of the starter that works when you screwdriver it. It would just end the search there if that proved itself right there. Understood it may be very difficult to get at a see exactly where you are poking and have a helper trigger the starter to watch for it.


That wire then if nothing goes thru a neutral safety switch such that you can't start this while in a gear only in "P" or "N" and that can fail. I would trace where it cuts out or know that is the way any alarm/anti-theft device is supposed to work and if aftermarket something the trouble would be there with a high % kinda hacked into wiring,


T



NaymzJaymz
User

Jun 25, 2015, 6:44 PM

Post #17 of 18 (2115 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

To Tom Greenleaf and Discretionals,
After following your advice the problem was traced, to the best of our abilities, to the starter relay. I waited a couple of days to write this just to make sure. We changed the relay and the rig has been running fine for 2 days now. Dozens of starts without any no starts. Thank you for help. This is mechanic kindergarten to you gentlemen, I'm sure. To me it was a learning experience and great to save a few bucks on labor. Thank you for your help!!!!


(This post was edited by NaymzJaymz on Jun 25, 2015, 6:46 PM)


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Jun 25, 2015, 7:18 PM

Post #18 of 18 (2110 views)
  post locked   Re: 2000 Ford Expedition intermittent no start.  

Appreciate your posting your find and results that it seems to be the problem so far.


I'll close thread as solved and YOU can ask any moderator to reopen it upon request,


T







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