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Old 12-11-2011, 11:48 AM   #1
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This is driving me nuts!

I know my battery was 6 yrs old and most probably ready to drop dead at any time so before I could go get one, my son went ahead and got me a red top Optima.

Once I installed the battery I noticed that when I turn the key to on, the battery guage only goes to a hair over 12 volts and not to 14 like the old one did when it was new. Also, my problems with the starter are still there, I thought it was a dying battery causing the problem but nope!

What happens is sometimes when I go to start the truck - whether I have my seatbelt on or not, I turn the key and all I hear is a CLICK from the starter, like the battery is dead. It's not a repeating click like when you have a bad starter solenoid, just a single click. Ok, so I open the door and close it and lock it and try again, sometimes this works and sometimes no. If that don't work - with the key in the on position - I put my foot on the break, shift through all of the gears and then put it back in park and let go of the brake pedal and try, usually this time it starts.

If it were the key switch then I know other problems would show up but nothing else is wrong. It's not throwing any codes at all so I'm kinda stuck between a rock and a hard place trying to figure if it's the starter solenoid or the keyswitch, fusebox or what????????????

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Old 12-11-2011, 11:48 AM   #2
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This is driving me nuts!

I know my battery was 6 yrs old and most probably ready to drop dead at any time so before I could go get one, my son went ahead and got me a red top Optima.

Once I installed the battery I noticed that when I turn the key to on, the battery guage only goes to a hair over 12 volts and not to 14 like the old one did when it was new. Also, my problems with the starter are still there, I thought it was a dying battery causing the problem but nope!

What happens is sometimes when I go to start the truck - whether I have my seatbelt on or not, I turn the key and all I hear is a CLICK from the starter, like the battery is dead. It's not a repeating click like when you have a bad starter solenoid, just a single click. Ok, so I open the door and close it and lock it and try again, sometimes this works and sometimes no. If that don't work - with the key in the on position - I put my foot on the break, shift through all of the gears and then put it back in park and let go of the brake pedal and try, usually this time it starts.

If it were the key switch then I know other problems would show up but nothing else is wrong. It's not throwing any codes at all so I'm kinda stuck between a rock and a hard place trying to figure if it's the starter solenoid or the keyswitch, fusebox or what????????????
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Old 12-11-2011, 12:02 PM   #3
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I wonder if the battery temp sensor is not happy. Is the bottom of the Optima flat? If it doesn't contact the sensor well, maybe the sensor thinks there isn't enough juice.
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Old 12-11-2011, 12:41 PM   #4
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My '92 Chevy had these same symptoms for a bit. I wound up chasing it all over the place and wound right back up at the starter solenoid.
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Old 12-11-2011, 01:06 PM   #5
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There was nothing in the bottom of the tray when I cleaned it and removed all the dust/dirt - at least I didn't see anything
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Old 12-11-2011, 01:08 PM   #6
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Starting to think maybe the solenoid too - don't remember if it was my diesel or my Bronco that had a similar problem and I had to replace the solenoid...
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Old 12-11-2011, 01:20 PM   #7
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Sounds like a bad starter very easy to change
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Old 12-11-2011, 01:38 PM   #8
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Sounds like a bad starter, they dont always click repeatedly, usually just once. I think the things you've been trying, opening and closing doors, seatbelt, shifting gears, standing on one leg while rubbing your belly and patting your head are coincidental you just need to keep cycling the key, or replace the starter before it gets worse.
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Old 12-11-2011, 01:57 PM   #9
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I'm guessing solenoid...or starter.
I had a similar problem yesterday on my Gator. After I had driven to town to get a new battery... Had it checked and it was good. Figured I was going to have to buy a starter. When I was taking the starter off I noticed that the ground moved easier than I thought it should. Sure enough that was the problem... Same symptoms you have.
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Old 12-11-2011, 02:11 PM   #10
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Starter. Dont cost much and not hard to change
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