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Starting problems (the not normal ones)

 
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Old 27 Apr 2011, 05:39 pm
MechaniChick's Avatar
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Angry Starting problems (the not normal ones)

I have a 2001 2.4, AT, with 199,000 miles on it.
I turn the key, the cluster lights come one, the starter does not engage, the engine does not attempt to turn over. We have all heard this story before, I know. This is a little different.

My positive battery cables have already been upgraded from 8 gauge to 4 gauge. The battery is fine. The starter and solenoid are fine. Power to the starter from the battery is 12 volts. Power to the PDC is 12 volts. Ignition relay is fine. Starter relay is fine. ASD relay is fine.

There is no power on pin 6 in the ignition harness. (again, relay is fine and there's 12 volts going to the PDC.) On the PDC there is no power going to the connection for pin 4 on the starter relay (it's supposed to be 12v when the key is in the start position, pin 5 is hot with the key in start position). And there is no power going to the little wire that sends the signal to the starter to kick in.

What the hell am I missing here? The only thing left that I can think of that's left is the ECM. I know Chryslers are notorious for ghost electrical problems, but jeeze. And I refuse to take it to the stealership or a shop.

Help would greatly be appreciated.

Last edited by MechaniChick; 27 Apr 2011 at 05:43 pm.
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Old 28 Apr 2011, 05:31 pm
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Default Re: Starting problems (the not normal ones)

Oh, and the car doesn't seem to be grounding out. I moved the ground cluster on the fender wall already, so that can be ruled out.
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Old 28 Apr 2011, 05:58 pm
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Default Re: Starting problems (the not normal ones)

You're the 3rd person in the past few days to have such a problem.

You know that red led that flashes a few times (on your gauge cluster) when you insert a key and put it in the ON position (before starting), does it stay on?

I had this issue before but the cause was something completely different. Bad OBD2 cable on my Diablosport caused my SKIM security system to kick in and disable the car. Fortunately, Diablosport reflashed my PCM free of charge and replaced the data cable on my DSP....all mailed to and fro overnight at their expense.

Anyway, if the red light remains on then your SKIM is activated.
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Old 28 Apr 2011, 06:29 pm
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Default Re: Starting problems (the not normal ones)

Bigger than crap, I went to chect if the SKIM was disabling it, and bingo... the car started. It started 4 times actually. So now that we know the culprit (and it also flashed the P1684 code, for what its worth) whats the fix? New PCM? Flash the existing PCM? Gasoline soaked rag and a lit match? I've got to get this car back on the road. LOL my Mazda eats way too much gas and its a work in progress.
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Old 28 Apr 2011, 06:54 pm
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Default Re: Starting problems (the not normal ones)

It's weird for it to just kick in and disable the vehicle.......

Are you using the grey key or just a spare black one? Stick with the grey one.

Since your car started now, I wouldn't go through the hassle of reflashing it (unless you can get it done for free). Very few dealerships even have the tool capable of reflashing our PCM, much less know how to use it so take that into consideration.

How about going to a pick n pull/junkyard and grabbing a PCM from matching year/tranny vehicle and have that flashed to your car?......then again I don't know if more is required on your part since you've got an older PT which utilize both a separate PCM and TCM.
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Old 28 Apr 2011, 07:18 pm
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Default Re: Starting problems (the not normal ones)

We have 2 keys. Both are coded to the car. SKIM was locking out the car on both keys. This also isnt the first time it's done it. The first time was about 3 months ago. It did it once, and then started right up. Second time (weeks later) it took a few times to get it cranked. It got progressively worse, taking more tries, and acting up more often, until two weeks ago when it wouldn't start at all no matter what you did. This is the first time in 2 weeks it has started.

When I managed my old shop we would send all our Chryslers that had to have a PCM or TCM flashed to one dealership. Fortuantely, I live close to Atlanta, so I know where I can get it flashed if need be. Last thing I need is for the problem to present itself again and refuse to start.
Even if I get a PCM out of the junkyard, I still have to flash it. So really its a question of getting another PCM, flashing the one I've got, or having to replace something else on the car.
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Old 28 Apr 2011, 08:08 pm
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Default Re: Starting problems (the not normal ones)

Unless someone chimes in, what I would do is just get a PCM (and possibly TCM) from a junkyard. It shouldn't be much, I've seen them go as little as 20-50 bucks around here.

Have you looked at possibly getting the SKIM module removed? Probably a long shot but if someone's done it, I'm sure it'll be posted somewhere. Plenty of cars use our SKIM security module, even the SRT-4.
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Old 28 Apr 2011, 08:25 pm
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Default Re: Starting problems (the not normal ones)

Thought about getting the SKIM reprogrammed? It's $130 at my dealership here in NC, and probably less trouble and cost than going the PCM route....
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Old 29 Apr 2011, 01:11 pm
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Default Re: Starting problems (the not normal ones)

Reprogramming the SKIM is $85 here. With no guarentees that it will fix the issue. I may just have to replace it.
SKIM (from everything I've read) cannont be disabled, unfortunately. If anyone knows anything different, please chime in!
There are no codes indicating that the PCM is shot. There are actually no codes on it at all.

So I am going to drive the car and see if I can get it to pop some codes in hopes that I can get some more insight as to whats up with it. Unfortunately I'm not in a position to just throw money at it. If I were I would just replace the SKIM and PCM and be done with it.

Last edited by MechaniChick; 29 Apr 2011 at 01:35 pm.
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Old 29 Apr 2011, 01:45 pm
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Default Re: Starting problems (the not normal ones)

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Thought about getting the SKIM reprogrammed? It's $130 at my dealership here in NC, and probably less trouble and cost than going the PCM route....
I suggested getting a used PCM and getting it reflashed because it could be cheaper than getting the SKIM reprogrammed (at the price you quoted).

Really though it's a shot in the dark as to what's making the SKIM disable the vehicle. For me, it was my PCM.
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