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Starting Issue - Click

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by local523, May 19, 2023.

  1. May 19, 2023 at 6:09 PM
    #1
    local523

    local523 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    For the electrical gurus out there:

    About once in every 10 starts when I turn the key there's a click and everything goes dead. I then open my door and the car starts making the familiar "ding-ding" chime associated with having the keys in the ignition and the door open. The truck will then start normally. The battery is less than a year old and tests fine.

    Does this sound like an ignition switch problem or is the solenoid in the starter going bad?

    Thanks in advance for any advice!
     
  2. May 20, 2023 at 5:56 PM
    #2
    Dm93

    Dm93 Test Don't Guess

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    Sounds like a poor connection at one of the battery cables, have you verified the battery cables are clean and tight?
     
    Laxtoy and Bivouac like this.
  3. May 20, 2023 at 6:03 PM
    #3
    OldSchlPunk

    OldSchlPunk A legend in my own mind!

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    Sounds like a bad ground to be more specific.
     
  4. May 20, 2023 at 6:16 PM
    #4
    Hardscrabble

    Hardscrabble Well-Known Member

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    A little of this and a little of that.
    This site contains affiliate links for which the site may be compensated.
    #4
    coopnugz likes this.
  5. May 20, 2023 at 6:40 PM
    #5
    coopnugz

    coopnugz Well-Known Member

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    I second the starter contacts, but yes check battery connections too. There are several threads on removing the starter motor to replace the contacts, it’s a bit finicky getting the motor out but a quick and easy job, and the kit is cheap. You’ll know if the contacts are worn, mine looked like the photo below.

    I had the same symptoms as you, intermittent “click” every 10 to 20 starts. If it ends up not wanting to start on you at all you can tap on the starter motor with your lug wrench or something to get the solenoid/plunger unstuck and get you home. I did that for weeks on occasion, but the final straw was having to rapidly tap on the starter while a buddy turned the engine over, in the rain. I replaced the contacts the next day.

    FF746E4F-2CC8-4C5D-936B-CA323DC1B91A.jpg
     
  6. May 20, 2023 at 6:50 PM
    #6
    Kwikvette

    Kwikvette Chief Executive Officer at Kwik Fab

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    Single click no start is easily the starter.

    Rebuild as mentioned.
     
  7. May 20, 2023 at 6:59 PM
    #7
    Dm93

    Dm93 Test Don't Guess

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    Bad starter contacts shouldn't cause the loss of all electrical power.

     
    Bivouac likes this.
  8. May 20, 2023 at 7:00 PM
    #8
    Kwikvette

    Kwikvette Chief Executive Officer at Kwik Fab

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    Correct, but maybe he meant when you turns the key?

    My power would shut off as the vehicle would crank, even when the starter didn't engage and did its single click.
     
    Dm93[QUOTED] likes this.
  9. May 20, 2023 at 7:11 PM
    #9
    Dm93

    Dm93 Test Don't Guess

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    Could be, maybe the OP can clarify.
     
    Kwikvette[QUOTED] likes this.
  10. May 20, 2023 at 7:59 PM
    #10
    local523

    local523 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for everyone's replies. When I turn the key to crank the engine, the entire car goes dead. Nothing works in the ACC position, no lights, car stereo, etc. It happened again today. Power was restored through some combination of opening and closing the driver's and front passenger door. Once the doors were opened and closed with the key in the ignition, the chime was restored indicating keys in the ignition. The truck started up as normal but I did notice that the clock had reset along with the all the settings on the aftermarket car stereo. When this problem first started months ago, I was able to restore power by disconnecting and reconnecting the negative cable of the battery (I have a quick disconnect). Now that I can restore power by opening and closing doors, I no longer need to pop the hood and adjust the negative cable of the battery.

    I'll mention that I've done the "Big 3" electrical upgrade and also upgraded to the GM alternator. The battery terminals are all new. Based on everyone's comments, I think I need to check:

    1. All grounds
    2. Starter solenoid (I purchased a new starter)
    3. Negative battery quick disconnect terminal (possibly defective)
     
  11. May 20, 2023 at 8:02 PM
    #11
    Bivouac

    Bivouac Well-Known Member

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    Check the easy things first before pulling the starter . Even Terminals that look clean and tight can cause problems.

    X2 a poor connection

    Worn contacts I think you would have more then 1 in 10 failures to crank
     
  12. May 20, 2023 at 8:32 PM
    #12
    Laxtoy

    Laxtoy Dog is my backseat driver

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    Sounds like a ground issue, check the main ones, might look at the ignition too.
     
  13. May 21, 2023 at 5:16 AM
    #13
    skeezix

    skeezix Well-Known Member

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    If you're thinking about replacing the starter contacts, check out Timmy the Toolman's excellent video and it shows every detail in removing the starter. However, when I replaced my starter contacts (which resolved my problem, BTW) I didn't have the total electrical shutdown that you are experiencing.
     
  14. May 31, 2023 at 7:58 AM
    #14
    local523

    local523 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    04 Crew Cab 4X4 TRD
    King coilovers on Camburg UCAs and Icon rear res shocks. Icon AAL with extended shackles. Icon Alpha 17" rims, BPV, Extended rear brake line. Front diff drop. Pioneer 2440 NEX head unit, Jenson amp, Gorilla sub amp, Polk component speakers, sub box, RAAMmat, Ensolite all around, ARB front bumper, Relentless Fabrications rear bumper, Icon Snugtop shell, pinch weld mod, deckplate mod, AFE air fliter, 1.5" wheel spacers, ditch lights, rear bumper lights, Tundra brake upgrade, homemade sliding anti-sway bar disconnects
    Just wanted to thank everyone for their input. I found one ground that had some play in it and also replaced my negative terminal quick disconnect with a standard battery connector. I've had 20+ starts without interruption since the changes and the truck sounds much stronger when starting now.
     
  15. May 31, 2023 at 11:02 AM
    #15
    Bivouac

    Bivouac Well-Known Member

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    Remains to be seen I bought the tires and wheels the rest came along
    Glad you got it sorted out!
     
  16. Jun 2, 2023 at 9:02 AM
    #16
    skeezix

    skeezix Well-Known Member

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