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1999 Intermittent No Crank, Starter Engages but no Crank


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Hey guys, I had a problem come up on my 99 on Friday. I came out to start the truck after it sitting for maybe 4 days to go dirtbike riding and the truck started at first, I moved it to the spot I load my bike and then the truck wouldn't start when I went to leave. I watched some videos and did some reading and got the truck to start by unplugging and re plugging the connector right out of the fuse box with a single brown wire. No loose battery connections and just looking around I couldnt find any loose grounds anywhere. I took the truck and it was fine the rest of the day, started fine probably 5 times. Today I went out and it happened again. No crank, clicks every time like the starter is engaging but wont spin. It isnt a relay click, definitely louder and more solid. Unplugging the batteries and letting the truck reset did nothing and neither did the brown plug the first time. Second time I unplugged it and blew it out and it started fine.  Started 3 more times no problem.

Any help is appreciated!

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17 minutes ago, Reaper22 said:

Hey guys, I had a problem come up on my 99 on Friday. I came out to start the truck after it sitting for maybe 4 days to go dirtbike riding and the truck started at first, I moved it to the spot I load my bike and then the truck wouldn't start when I went to leave. I watched some videos and did some reading and got the truck to start by unplugging and re plugging the connector right out of the fuse box with a single brown wire. No loose battery connections and just looking around I couldnt find any loose grounds anywhere. I took the truck and it was fine the rest of the day, started fine probably 5 times. Today I went out and it happened again. No crank, clicks every time like the starter is engaging but wont spin. It isnt a relay click, definitely louder and more solid. Unplugging the batteries and letting the truck reset did nothing and neither did the brown plug the first time. Second time I unplugged it and blew it out and it started fine.  Started 3 more times no problem.

Any help is appreciated!

Sounds like the strater might be failing. If the clicking is coming from the starter the contacts are most likely worn out. 

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28 minutes ago, dripley said:

Sounds like the strater might be failing. If the clicking is coming from the starter the contacts are most likely worn out. 

Thanks for the reply! The truck starts perfect when it cranks, seems like the starter is strong when it cranks. Would this be irrelevant of worn contacts?

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I would just try replacing the starter contacts in the solenoid, mine did that a long time ago, and replaced the contacts, still cranking on the original starter at 350k, back then napa  was stocking them, but you can still get them on order, I know Genos or Larry B’s still stocks them

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On most bigger diesel starters there are 2 things that happen when the key is turned.

1. the bendix is thrown into the ring gear first

2. starter spins  as the bendix is fully engaged or slightly after full engagement

This protects the starter teeth and the flywheel teeth by making sure the teeth have full engagement, it happens very quick and the eye may not even be able to see it 

I don't know whether these starters are the same as I've never had one apart but as said above a good click then nothing is usually starter contacts

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Ok guys I’m still having this problem. Ordered the new contacts and plunger from Genos and replaced them, still had the same problem. Bought a new starter just to see if maybe I had done something wrong and again same problem. Strong click but no crank. Where can I go from here? Really bummed since I want to tow my trailer this weekend, any advice helps. 

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  • 4 weeks later...

@Reaper22 did you ever figure out what the cause of your truck not starting was? I am experiencing the same problem. I crank the starter but all I hear is 1 click and nothing happens. Had the batteries tested and they test good. Currently waiting on a new plunger and contacts from Larry B. 

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1 minute ago, Bcoan55 said:

@Reaper22 did you ever figure out what the cause of your truck not starting was? I am experiencing the same problem. I crank the starter but all I hear is 1 click and nothing happens. Had the batteries tested and they test good. Currently waiting on a new plunger and contacts from Larry B. 

Hey man yeah I figured it out. The cable that goes to my starter itself was corroded inside the jacket. I cleaned the terminals and the block connector on the positive of the main battery and it started but it did it again in a day or two. Checked the starter cable itself and the corrosion was inside that wire. Cleaned it and no problems since. 

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