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Unread 11-17-2010, 08:13 AM   #1
tiber
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1996 XJ Cherokee 
 
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Location: Valley Forge, PA
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1996 Cherokee, won't even try to start

Hi all.

My wife has a 1996 jeep cherokee. I'd hate to part with it because I've put a decent amount of work in it (junkyard ressurection - totalled on front end damage as it was filled with BBQ) but this one has me stumped. It USED to start when we turned the key. One day, my wife drove it to wawa, came out, and suddenly it's not even trying to start. I searched around here and ran across the thread about the NSS: http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f11/j...ml#post4530299

I believe I have the correct plug, being above the oil filter in a group of three other plugs. However every illustration I have shows this being eight holes, I only have seven and a blank. I disconnected it and shoved a paperclip in there and I've got no success. Is this the correct plug by my description of the location and pinout? Is this the correct way to jumper this or should I actually cut the insulation off the wires? (Her backup lights worked, so I suspect this isn't the neutral safety switch).

I also opened the fuse box and swapped the starter relay with the fuel pump relay. Still no go. I have checked the fuses, none of them are blown. I do not have the cover to the fusebox under the dash, unfortunately, if someone could send me a decent picture of the disgram I would appreciate it as I haven't pulled any of those yet.

I also looked for something which would be the contacts to the starter to jump it from the battery. From other people's description I should see something near the battery. I have no idea what I'm looking for but I didn't see anything which stood out as obviously connect to the starter. Throw me a clue?

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Unread 11-17-2010, 02:52 PM   #2
CJ7-Tim
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1) Does the starter engage, make the starter sound, and cause the engine to turn ?
2) Does the starter not engage and you only hear a clicking sound ?
3) When you turn the key does nothing happen and you hear no sounds ?
4) Does the engine sputter and try to run, or does it not run at all ?
5) Does the engine start and run normally for a a few seconds and then die ?

Answer yes/no to all.
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Unread 11-18-2010, 05:21 AM   #3
tiber
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1 - no
2 - no. Starter doesn't attempt to engage.
3 - turning the key results in everything coming on except the engine. The battery was what I first suspected. Its good. Radio, headlights work and the dash lights up. Annoying headlight buzzer is in fantastic condition.
4 & 5 - no, the engine does not attempt to crank or engage. Its definitely either the starter or something preventing the starter from turning.

Thanks for the reply.
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Unread 11-18-2010, 06:44 AM   #4
tjwalker
It's the crank sensor!
 
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The NSS is a possibility here.

Try wiggling the shift lever while turning the key or try starting in neutral. If either of these techniques work, you have an NSS problem.

If you get stuck, proceed like this. Get a meter. With the key in the ON position, check for voltage directly at the starter. If you have approximately full battery voltage at the starter, the problem is the starter. If you have no voltage, the NSS and also the ignition switch are in play.

Here is a link to an article on a procedure that may restore function to the NSS and how to bypass it in an emergency (not recommended otherwise).

http://go.jeep-xj.info/HowtoNSSrebuild.htm
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Unread 11-18-2010, 01:23 PM   #5
Solomon7
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When you first turn the key to ON do you hear the fuel pump buzz/prime for a sec in back?
If no then probably the Crankshaft Position Sensor on the bell housing of the trans about 11 o'clock from the front. Real fun to change. If the CPS isn't functioning, pump won't work, nor will key or starter. Not at all. Everything else/lights, radio etc. will be fine.
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Unread 11-18-2010, 02:50 PM   #6
98Rubiclone
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Agree with walker.... Mine would only start in Neutral for a while.. Try that and see how it works for ya..
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Unread 11-18-2010, 06:12 PM   #7
tjwalker
It's the crank sensor!
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Solomon7 View Post
If the CPS isn't functioning, pump won't work, nor will key or starter. Not at all. Everything else/lights, radio etc. will be fine.
Not true. The crankshaft position sensor is not involved with the starter/cranking circuit. It is completely separate from the circuit that cranks the engine.

If the crank sensor is bad, the engine will turn over until the cows come home.

It just won't "START"

Also, depending on how the crank sensor fails, you may or may not have fuel pump function. I have seen it both ways a number of times.
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Unread 11-19-2010, 05:20 AM   #8
tiber
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Thanks for the replies.

I figured out the solenoid was on the starter which is a WTF of design choices. I ended up jumpering the solenoid with my channellocks and nothing happened. I pulled the old starter, slapped a remanufactured one in and she turned right over. Surely someone sells a cover which goes over this thing?
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Unread 11-20-2010, 05:35 PM   #9
tozier9
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This just happened to me today with my 96. Tapped on the starter with a hammer and it started right up.
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Unread 11-23-2010, 04:56 PM   #10
tozier9
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So just fixed my starter.

Followed this thread: Get to know your starter..... - Jeep Cherokee Forum xjTalk

And shes working great again. I did not even replace the starter solenoid.

Oh and I put the starter on the jeep in 0 degree weather, also its a blizzard outside here in montana
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