Apologies for starting as a noob and going straight into the plea for help; but was wondering if anyone had any ideas...
I have an '02 Jeep GC Ltd Edition automatic which has been in the family since new, it has 133k on the clock and other than a recent problem with the speed sensors has been relatively trouble free.
In the past month it started to be very hard to turn the key, my husband though he had sorted this with a squirt of WD40, but since then the car has become progressively harder and harder to start although the key has become easy to turn.
Initially it just would not start very easily if I leapt out to drop my daughter off at breakfast club, you would turn the key, lights would come on all over the dash but the key would click into the "firing" position and nothing would happen, so you'd have to play around with it retrying until it caught and fired up. But then when I finished work 8 hours later it would start fine; now it is only starting when first tried at the start of the day in the cool of the morning.
So far my husband has taken out the ignition and checked that is ok, disconnected the battery for 30 mins, tried to jump start it, hit the starter motor with a hammer and connected the starter straight to the battery. One proviso with the stuff that relates to the starter motor though, we're having difficulty actually confirming that what we think is the starter is actually so because I am unable to find any engine diagrams online.
We've checked for error codes too, there are none.
The only thing that has changed recently is that we had a problem with the gearbox that resulted in the battery being changed and the speed sensors. Whilst I cannot say all the problems happened straight after this work was done it has all started not long after they handed the car back to me.
Having read up on similar problems in more recent models I was wondering if anyone had encountered this in their car and if they could point us in the direction of something else to try before I ask my local garage to replace the starter motor.