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post #1 of (permalink) Old 05-02-2007, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
 
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83 cj7 start issue-electrical

I tried to start my 83 cj7, 6 cyl, 5spd, carbed, this morning and encountered a problem. Usually when i turn the key to the "run" possition, the volt meter neddle comes up and shows the volts, radio comes on, and all the power accesories get juice. When i went to start it this morn, it turned over fine, but did not fire (normal for my cold chokeless engine). However, while the key was in the "run" possition, i noticed that i was not getting a reading on the volt meter, but the cd player, lights, and fan(heat) were all working fine, and the engine spun over as fast as usual. When i went to krank the second time, i just got a clicking noise, like i had a dead batterie, except i know its not dead becuase it turned over fine 15 seconds prior. I am kinda bewildered as to why my volt meter is not showing anything when the key is on, and now the starter, or solinoid is just clicking when i go to turn the engine over. So i sat there and played w/ it for about 10 minutes, tapped the solidnoid, starter, and key switch, -no crank. Then i gave it one last try before i gave up, I turned the key, and it cranked and fired right up, while it was running the volt meter was showing proper voltage, but it seemed to be not as steady as usual-the needle was fluctuating a couple volts per second! So i shut it off, and tried again, and was greeted w/ the same old clicking noise i had been hearing all along. and no volt reading. Any suggestions? I will check all grounds and clean everything up nicely after i take my calc exam tonight, but i am curiouse as to what yall think it might be! Thanks for reading the long post, and for any suggestions you might have. -Kevin
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 05-02-2007, 02:47 PM
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Clean your battery posts and cable ends. Check the ground too.

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post #3 of (permalink) Old 05-02-2007, 06:38 PM
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I've had the same problem.

Replace the ignition switch....and I don't mean the part that the key goes into....the actual switch is a rectangular module on the top of the column just behind the dash....takes all of about 15 min to swap out. It's a lot easier if you take the bolts out that hold the column up and let it drop a few inches...more room for fingers and wrenches...

Make sure you disconnect the battery before you start....too many things under that to short out...

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84 CJ7, SOA, 5.7LTBI, 4L60E, 35"x12.5, 4.10 gears, F/Det, R/ARB, Full Roll Cage,
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 05-02-2007, 07:58 PM Thread Starter
 
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ok, thanks for the replies, ill do both. I happen to have an extra switch, that i purchased but didn't need yet, so ill put that in tommorow, and let yall know if it worked.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 05-02-2007, 08:06 PM
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Wait... don't install the swtich yet... you can get in lots of trouble throwing parts at the problem. This is a case where you need to first troubleshoot the problem. Follow Taz's advice first. If the grounds are compromized, then you'll have no end of problems.... do the simple things first.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 05-02-2007, 11:11 PM
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Normally I would agree about checking grounds first......
BUT....
Besides the fact that I have had the same problem....I think we are not reading the post fully....
Quote:
Usually when i turn the key to the "run" possition, the volt meter neddle comes up and shows the volts, radio comes on, and all the power accesories get juice. When i went to start it this morn, it turned over fine, but did not fire (normal for my cold chokeless engine). However, while the key was in the "run" possition, i noticed that i was not getting a reading on the volt meter, but the cd player, lights, and fan(heat) were all working fine, and the engine spun over as fast as usual.
The ignition switch has several sections....the blades that feed the acc are not the same as the ignition...hence, a bad switch would allow power to the acc but not the ignition....

Yea....it could be a bad ground....but I'm still betting on the switch.

AKA DDawg16
84 CJ7, SOA, 5.7LTBI, 4L60E, 35"x12.5, 4.10 gears, F/Det, R/ARB, Full Roll Cage,
D44 Flat top in progress...
Link to my Frame up Restore
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 05-03-2007, 12:16 AM
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The same problem does not always result from the same cause.... The ignition switch switches in, and out, several circuits during varied mode changes.

It would be better to be assured the ignition switch is bad before it's replaced rather than take someone's word that its bad because they've suffered the same problem and the switch was the cause. That's just not good troubleshooting. Some other causes that would result in the same symptoms are:
  • A bad starter relay
  • A bad starter
  • A bad ignition switch
  • A bad battery (shallow charge)
  • Multiple contact/wiring joints
  • A bad fuse box
Those are just a few things I can think of of the top of my head that fits the bill.

Also, one problem many new Jeepers have is to introduce problems into the Jeep when they're throwing parts at the Jeep in an effort to fix the problem. They install a new switch on the column and don't know that it requires some degree of alignment. If they're not lucky, they introduce new problems and go chasing them. Then they bounce off all about the electrical circuits with gay abandon trying to find that introduced problem.

If Kevin86 has to ask about this problem, then I'm thinking he's not familiar with electronics. He said:
Quote:
So i sat there and played w/ it for about 10 minutes, tapped the solidnoid, starter, and key switch, -no crank.
I don't mention this to point out a failure on Kevin86's part. There's no real logical troubleshooting here, no voltage measurements, no procedure for diagnosing the problem in varied ignition switch modes except to bang on things and hope that cures the problem In my experience, I've only seen that discover an electrical problem once... a bad mechanical regulator. Electronic problems on a Jeep aren't easy to find for owners who are not schooled in troubleshooting, or in electronics. Most of us don't know everything... and electronics seem to be a mystery that soon turns into misery for most owners. I just would rather see Kevin86 have the best chance of a successful conclusion to the problem rather than taking a chance of introducing more. The problem is a rather simple one to find and cure. But you've got to start somewhere in troubleshooting it. I mean no disrespect to Kevin86, he's smart enough to know when he's over his head and ask for help. Now he's been given two paths to approach fixing the Jeep. It will be interesting to see which one he takes.

By cleaning the battery terminals and refurbishing the four grounds on the '83 CJ:
  • Battery to engine block
  • Engine block to frame
  • Frame to tub
  • Battery to tub
you remove many, many problems with the electrical system on this era Jeep. There is no downside to doing this procedure first.

Its cheap. Its easy. Its fast. There is more of a likelihood of fixing the Jeep's problem and less likelihood of introduction of a new problem with this simple procedure. And, let's say that this procedure does not fix the Jeep. You've only done what will have to be done anyway, now or shortly in the future (I think I can speak to that.. as I also own a 1983 CJ7).

What do you have to loose?
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 05-03-2007, 09:55 AM
 
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Red face

I'd just like to chime in here, and affirm Leve's words about good/bad/zero
troubleshooting. I just got through with a frustrating orgy of parts replacement
on my Suburban, because it began to just click instead of
start one day. Long story short, after replacing starter, starter switch,
battery cables, everything - it still just clicked. The battery had gone south,
too (yellow top Optima) so every time I tried starting the Sub, I would use
jumper cables to either the Jeep or the motorhome - and it was those
perfectly good APPEARING cables that had been the culprit through the
whole mess. They LOOKED good, no corrosion, no broken strands, they worked
on the Volvo and the Jeep, but they would NOT pass enough current
to turn a 350 over. I remember resisting suspicion of them out of a sense
of cynical belief that I was grasping at straws! I didn't even bother to measure
the voltage at the starter during cranking. I finally bought new jumper cables,
because of issues with other vehicles, and tried them on the
Suburban - VRRRROOOOM!

Don't be like me. Listen to these guys when they say check the simple stuff
first. Its amazing how deeply you can just believe that its something more
complicated.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 05-03-2007, 10:46 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the replies, I haven't made it out to try to do any trouble shooting, but i should have some time tommorow, ill start w/ checking/cleaning all connections and grounds. Ill keep you posted
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 05-04-2007, 07:20 AM
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Itís gotta be a fight, donít it?

I didnít just throw some comment up there to pad my post count. This is a classic problem that is almost always loose or dirty battery cable. I couldnít count how may Iíve fixed. The last one was a couple of months ago. I got as call from the daughter-in-law. She started to go to lunch and her car wouldnít start, starter solenoid just clicks. My son was out of town so she called me. I packed up some tools, not being sure what Iíd find, and headed out.

First thing I did was turn on the headlights. That will tell you a lot. Headlights bright but car wonít start, probably blown fuse or bad connection somewhere. Headlights dim, bad connection or bad battery. The headlights were dim but the battery had just been replaced last month, both are clues. Now I wonder, did the guy that replaced the battery get the cables tight? I grabbed the battery end of the first cable and it moved. Top post battery, posts not quite round, vibrations caused the cable end to turn to a point where it was loose. Twisted the cable back to where it was tight and called the daughter-in-law on the cel phone. Told her to bring her keys and come start her car (Note: I didnít even have the keys yet.).

She started it right up. I had her shut it down. I moved the cable back to the loosest point and tightened the clamp bolt down there so it couldnít move around again.


In this thread, Iím hearing,

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepDawg View Post
I think we are not reading the post fully....
I read it before I posted my thoughts.


Please explain this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin86 View Post
However, while the key was in the "run" possition, i noticed that i was not getting a reading on the volt meter, but the cd player, lights, and fan(heat) were all working
There is a logical explanation for it. Iím real sure these all come off the ACC feed.

We donít know about ignition, the fact that the engine didnít start does not mean that there was no current to the ignition.


We do have,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin86 View Post
When i went to krank the second time, i just got a clicking noise, like i had a dead batterie, except i know its not dead becuase it turned over fine 15 seconds prior.
Now the start contact is a different contact in the ignition switch so there is a problem there too.


Next;

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin86 View Post
I turned the key, and it cranked and fired right up, while it was running the volt meter was showing proper voltage, but it seemed to be not as steady as usual-the needle was fluctuating a couple volts per second!
Another problem.


Lastly,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin86 View Post
So i shut it off, and tried again, and was greeted w/ the same old clicking noise i had been hearing all along. and no volt reading.

Put ALL the clues together name the cause and explain why it caused each to happen.

CD and heater fan work but no voltage reading on the volt gauge
Starter solenoid just clicks
Erratic voltage reading when charging
Starts once, wonít start a few seconds later

There are 10 kinds of people in the world.
Those who understand binary and those who don't.

Last edited by CJ7Taz; 05-04-2007 at 07:30 AM.
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