Jeep Enthusiast Forums banner
1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First off I want to say thanks to the forum and it's members for helping me numerous issues I have had with my 99 XJ over the last few months. This has been a valuable tool as I have tackled the issues my XJ has faced. That being said, I have not been able to find an answer for this problem yet and I am wondering if anyone can help point me in the right direction.

Backstory: I recently wanted to tune up my ignition systems in the Jeep. On Monday I replaced the distributor cap, rotor, and ignition coil (and the turn signal relay too). After replacing these, I have had a no crank no start condition that I cannot resolve. I have tried reinstalling the old parts with no luck. I have also tested the relevant fuses in the pdc and in the passenger footwell. No luck. Today I tried to jump the starter with a screwdriver to see if that would help and I could hear the starter whirring around but still no cranking. I am at a loss for what I could have done. The only thing that I can think is that somehow I did something to the antitheft (aftermarket that came with the jeep), though my ignorance on antitheft issues makes me wary of chasing that without guidance. Also, because I know it will be asked, 4 weeks earlier I had installed a new battery and brand new wiring from the battery and grounds in the engine bay. The Jeep was starting up fine until I messed with the ignition coil and the distributor. And yes the battery is charged and verified with auto parts store.

Please, if anyone can help give me an idea as to why i might be experiencing this. I would really appreciate the help.

Jeep is a 99 XJ 4.0.
 

·
Real Jeeps have dents
Joined
·
29,308 Posts
If issues pop up it is logical to suspect the most recent maintenance/repairs/modifications as a primary suspect. Make sure the work was done correctly, and anything that was loosened, moved aside, removed, or replaced is where it belongs, hooked up and plugged in, and snugly attached.

Everything is hooked up and plugged in, and installed in the correct order ?
  • Firing order of the plug wires is correct ?
  • Did you jostle break or otherwise upset anything else doing the recent work ?
  • Have you tested the coil ?

What is missing, spark or fuel ?
  • You should have a snapping blue spark from the plugs. A red or yellow spark is weak and probably will not spark in the cylinder.
  • Do you hear the fuel pump prime for 3-5 seconds when you turn the ignition key ?

Why didn't you install fresh spark plugs wires ?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
So the starter spins when you jump it without engaging the flywheel to crank the engine? But not when you turn the key to start it? Or am I misunderstanding what you said about using the screwdriver?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So the starter spins when you jump it without engaging the flywheel to crank the engine? But not when you turn the key to start it? Or am I misunderstanding what you said about using the screwdriver?
The starter is not engaging at all when I turn the key. when I jump the starter it whirs, but does not result in any cranking.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
If issues pop up it is logical to suspect the most recent maintenance/repairs/modifications as a primary suspect. Make sure the work was done correctly, and anything that was loosened, moved aside, removed, or replaced is where it belongs, hooked up and plugged in, and snugly attached.

Everything is hooked up and plugged in, and installed in the correct order ?
  • Firing order of the plug wires is correct ?
  • Did you jostle break or otherwise upset anything else doing the recent work ?
  • Have you tested the coil ?

What is missing, spark or fuel ?
  • You should have a snapping blue spark from the plugs. A red or yellow spark is weak and probably will not spark in the cylinder.
  • Do you hear the fuel pump prime for 3-5 seconds when you turn the ignition key ?

Why didn't you install fresh spark plugs wires ?
I replaced spark plug wires as well. Fuel is definitely not an issue as the pump kicks on and pressurizes the fuel rail. I haven't been able to test spark yet but am doing so tomorrow AM
 

·
Real Jeeps have dents
Joined
·
29,308 Posts
The starter is not engaging at all when I turn the key. when I jump the starter it whirs, but does not result in any cranking.
Additional data shifts the focus of the troubleshooting. If the ignition switch is not defective, and there are no Neutral Safety Switch issues, this suggests a faulty starter or loose/corroded wires.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Fourspeedman

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
Assuming the xj has the auto trans same as mine, have you checked the NSS? It has wires near the area where you would have been working that could have come unplugged or been broken while working on it. Only one possible thing and may not be the most likely cause but it's easy enough to check it to rule it out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,736 Posts
The starter is not engaging at all when I turn the key. when I jump the starter it whirs, but does not result in any cranking.
How are you jumping the starter? You should connect the small terminal post to the big one with the battery cable. I use a small screwdriver or short piece of wire. That will engage the solenoid, drive the bendix out to engage the flexplate/flywheel and spin the starter to crank the engine. DO NOT make contact with the other larger terminal.

You can also use a voltmeter between the small terminal (do not contact either large one!!) and ground and see 12v when to turn the key to start (assuming you're in park/neutral).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,857 Posts
You have been in the power distribution centre under the hood so you may have disturbed one of the other relays.

What test equipment do you have?

One of the most useful is a 12V test lamp. various designs exist or you can make your own. basically you are looking for power.

I would then start at the starter. Seems appropiate.

in Start are you getting electricity at the solenoid? If not , you need to investigate further back.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top