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Unread 04-04-2014, 05:47 PM   #1
TGL
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1984 CJ7 
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: austin, tx
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Key won't start my rig. Potential electrical issue(s)?

The other day when my 84 CJ7 wouldn't start (starter wouldn't spin fast enough, then slower, then not at all) I noticed black smoke coming from the pos battery cable and solenoid, so I figured the starter was bad. After replacing the starter, solenoid and all cables leading to/from the solenoid I thought I had the problem licked. Then, when I turned the key, the starter began to turn but did but not start the engine (though seemingly much quicker than before, it probably would have started with a few more tries). I turned the key back to the off position but the starter kept turning... Even when I took the key out. So after disconnecting the battery, I replaced the ignition switch and ignition lock cylinder. Now when I turn the key I get nothing. I have electricity to my guages, wipers etc., but bupkiss from the starter. Any ideas would be welcome. Thanks.

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Unread 04-04-2014, 06:08 PM   #2
crouse11c
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Foes the solenoid work. Have you checked it with a volt meter. Although it depends on what you have done to your jeep. Is it stock ignition. Check if you have spark. You can have a bad solenoid or starter relay what ever you want to call them. It would allow you to turn over but never give the power to the distributor. I would look at that first, you can jump the solenoid and see if it will run but will have to remove the jump to turn off. If it was my jeep with my HEI distributor I would know that it is the solenoid. But more info on your setup or a pic will help.
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Unread 04-04-2014, 06:25 PM   #3
LumpyGrits
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Try a fully charged battery
LG
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Unread 04-05-2014, 06:07 AM   #4
Mike Romain
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The low battery welded the contacts in the fender solenoid by arcing out. This keeps the starter turning after the key is off.

You will need a new one And a battery recharge.
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86/00 CJ7 Laredo, 33x9.5 BFG AT's, 'glass nose to tail in '00, 'New' frame,wires and plumbing in '09. Carter BBD Carbed 4.0 HO in '10.
89 YJ Renegade. BBD Carbed 4.0 HO. Locked front and rear with 33x9.5 BFG AT's
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Unread 04-05-2014, 02:44 PM   #5
TGL
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I replaced the solenoid, as well as the starter and all wires between the battery, starter, solenoid and alternator after it wouldn't start the first time. It wasn't until I replaced everything that the starter turning on its own issue began. So I am not sure how the new solenoid could be causing this, unless you are saying a low battery has been the cause of all of this, and will continue to fry all solenoids that I may put in. but if that is the case, how did my original starter go bad?
I had the battery checked and was told that it is good and has enough power. To clarify, the key currently has 0 functionality, and when I hook up the battery I get all of my electrical things work but I get nothing from the starter. Then when I hook up my jumper cables to it suddenly the starter begins to turn... Very slowly and not enough to start the engine. Also, if I let this go for more than a few seconds the neg battery cable begins to smoke at the terminal and all my wires get hot. So really I have 2 problems:

1. The starter turns on its own when it does get enough juice.
2. It doesn't spin fast enough to start the engine.

I had the my new starter checked this morning and it passed. It would probably help if I knew a little more about how electric systems work, but I don't. Also, I don't have (or know how to use) an amp meter. My setup is pretty much stock with the dealer option AC kit. Thanks again for your time.
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Unread 04-05-2014, 03:15 PM   #6
LumpyGrits
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Was the battery load tested for amps(what should have been done after charging)or just a surface reading of volts(tells you nut'n)?
Do you know the difference of those 2 tests?
How old is the battery?
Have you even charged the battery since this issue started.
The starter pulls 100X more 'juice', than anything else ever will in any vehicle.
The battery is 'god' here-
AGAIN, I WILL SAY-GET ANOTHER BATTERY!
LG
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Unread 04-06-2014, 05:59 AM   #7
Mike Romain
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Hot wire or smoke = Bad connection!

Your negative cable has a bad connection. The connection where it hooks to the engine is notorious for a sneaky bad connection. The battery clamp also needs cleaning.

The cable can Also get a rotted connection where it goes into the battery post clamp, but I would clean up the ends first.

This will also make your battery go dead because it doesn't charge well through a bad connection.

That solenoid is also welded to be 'on' by the sounds of it.
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86/00 CJ7 Laredo, 33x9.5 BFG AT's, 'glass nose to tail in '00, 'New' frame,wires and plumbing in '09. Carter BBD Carbed 4.0 HO in '10.
89 YJ Renegade. BBD Carbed 4.0 HO. Locked front and rear with 33x9.5 BFG AT's
Some Canadian Bush Jeep Runs and Build Photos: http://mikeromainjeeptrips.shutterfly.com (10 new albums added Sept 16/10)
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Unread 04-06-2014, 08:19 AM   #8
John Strenk
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I've had brand new cables go bad. One I pulled on the cable and pulled right out of the terminal.

On the solenoid, make sure you use two wenches to tighten the post. You can twist the post causing the plunger to jam.

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Unread 04-06-2014, 08:44 AM   #9
Mike Romain
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Oh, your battery sure sounds dead now, it will need a good charge so it doesn't fry another solenoid. Those Ford style solenoids are a pain that way. Have had starters cook before we could get the battery cable off even.
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86/00 CJ7 Laredo, 33x9.5 BFG AT's, 'glass nose to tail in '00, 'New' frame,wires and plumbing in '09. Carter BBD Carbed 4.0 HO in '10.
89 YJ Renegade. BBD Carbed 4.0 HO. Locked front and rear with 33x9.5 BFG AT's
Some Canadian Bush Jeep Runs and Build Photos: http://mikeromainjeeptrips.shutterfly.com (10 new albums added Sept 16/10)
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Unread 04-08-2014, 01:11 PM   #10
TGL
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So I have now replaced the battery, negative bat cable and got a new solenoid. Which means I now have a brand new bat, solenoid, starter, and all wires/cables connecting or touching all of them. I cleaned the heck out of all of my connections as well. So now the key operates the starter as it should, and when I turn it she cranks strong (thank you for your advice on making that happen)... But does not actually start. This is strange because it never was an issue before. Starter turns, engine turns, all electrical units seem to operate properly, but it won't start. Ideas?
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Unread 04-08-2014, 02:02 PM   #11
crouse11c
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Have you checked your spark. What type of ignition do you have. HEI or what. If you can turn the engine fine and it doesn't start at all or combust then I would check ignition. Maybe you hooked something up wrong or forgot to reconnect something.
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Unread 04-08-2014, 02:22 PM   #12
Mike Romain
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Where the battery cable hooks to the fender solenoid are a couple more loop connectors. You wouldn't be the first one to have dropped one down when putting that back together.

If they are all there, then check the first 6" of them which is fuse link wire. This can get blown when boosting if the cables touch wrong. Look for burns or gently pull on them to see if they are dead. These 6" pieces end at big rubber crimp connectors. The fuse link wire is 14 ga and can be purchased by the foot at most parts stores.
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86/00 CJ7 Laredo, 33x9.5 BFG AT's, 'glass nose to tail in '00, 'New' frame,wires and plumbing in '09. Carter BBD Carbed 4.0 HO in '10.
89 YJ Renegade. BBD Carbed 4.0 HO. Locked front and rear with 33x9.5 BFG AT's
Some Canadian Bush Jeep Runs and Build Photos: http://mikeromainjeeptrips.shutterfly.com (10 new albums added Sept 16/10)
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Unread 04-08-2014, 02:31 PM   #13
LumpyGrits
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You have fuel in the carb bowl?
LG
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Unread 04-08-2014, 03:37 PM   #14
TGL
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Funny you mention the carb. Just did some looking around and the carb and fuel lines are bone dry (tank is full). Poured some fuel down the carb and she started right up, until it burned up the gas I poured. Fuel lines still dry. Looks like its got a mechanical fuel pump on the side of the block, tried sucking gas through to undo any blockages but that did not work. Someone mentioned I might want to prime the float in the carb (its the stock Carter) but I am not exactly sure what part of the carb that is, or how to do that. What should I do next?

It is strange that this fuel issue is happening now, it was never an issue before my electrical problems. It must be related to my electrical issue somehow, but I cant see how. Did I create some kind of blockage in/near the pump while repeatedly trying to start the engine? Or did I maybe short out something that affects fuel flow? Is there a fuse I should be checking? I appreciate all the help.
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Unread 04-08-2014, 03:50 PM   #15
LumpyGrits
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Don't trust a Jeep gauge ever.
How do you know the tank is full?
Make sure ALL fuel line connections are tight so your FP is NOT suc'n air.
Is fuel get'n to your fuel filter??
No fuse....
LG
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