1993 FZJ80 startup problem (1 Viewer)

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Jun 22, 2020
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Florida
I bought this 80 a few months ago and it's been flawless until now. One day when I went to start it it acted like a dead battery, one click and nothing. After messing around with battery diagnostics, I pulled the negative cable off. Battery tested fully charged. I put the negative cable back on, started right up and ran fine. This morning it happened again for the third time in about 2 weeks. Click, nothing. Pull the negative cable and put back on, starts right up. Seems like ECU to me, I've checked both ECU fuses, they are fine. Anybody hear of this before ?

Thanks
 
Joined
Oct 19, 2016
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Colorado
Instead of pulling the battery terminal, does pulling the EFI relay for 5-10 minutes result in being able to start? I would also check the fusible link on the positive side, it could be that you are jostiling that just enough in the process.

It also is not just about voltage of the battery, but the cranking amps it can put out.
 
Joined
Jun 22, 2020
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Florida
I will try the EFI relay, I haven't looked at that. The fusible link is ok, and the battery cranking amps test good. It's a new battery and cranks strong. Whatever this is isn't pulling down the battery at all.

Thanks
 
Joined
Jun 22, 2020
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Florida
The click is very quiet and sounds like its coming from near the firewall. Unfortunately I can't really test anything until it won't start again, and I never know when that will be except it's always the first time you try to start it in the morning. Once it starts it will keep starting just fine for days or even a week.
 
Joined
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Olathe, KS, USA
 
The click is very quiet and sounds like its coming from near the firewall. Unfortunately I can't really test anything until it won't start again, and I never know when that will be except it's always the first time you try to start it in the morning. Once it starts it will keep starting just fine for days or even a week.
Next time it does it, get under the truck with a hammer or breaker bar and thump the bottom of the starter. If it starts right up after that, it's definitely contacts.
 
Joined
Jul 19, 2006
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Boulder, Co
 
 
Another test is to bring the battery voltage directly to the start terminal of the starter via a direct wire. This bypasses all of the starter contacts behind the dash, the neutral start switch on the transmission (make sure you're in Park!) and at least two or three wiring spices in the regular wiring path. If the starter cranks when being "hotwired" like this, then it could well be degradation in any one or more of those components in the starting circuit. Do some searching on this forum and you'll find several threads - some are seriously long where the saga lasted years until a fix was implemented. Some folks replaced factory components, others tried that yet still didn't have a satisfactory result and ultimately chose to augment the existing circuitry with a new relay circuit. (Full disclosure, I chose the latter path.)

Does this problem get worse when things are warm/hot? If so, that's another clue that the starter circuit is degrading. Heat increases electrical resistance.

Of course it could be a degraded starter circuit AND worn contacts in the starter, too.
 
Joined
Jun 22, 2020
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Florida
This truck is in show condition. Every wire and terminal is clean and tight. You could eat off the differentials. It's pretty insane, it was like that when I bought it. That's what I find so unusual, the simple act of disconnecting the negative cable and reconnecting and it cranks and starts instantly. No drawdown on the battery and no apparent change to the ECU or any electronics. You disconnect and reconnect and its like nothing ever happened.
 
Joined
Dec 8, 2006
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New Jersey
 
 
the simple act of disconnecting the negative cable and reconnecting and it cranks and starts instantly.
That is screaming "bad connection" to me.
Unless you have calibrated eyeballs, it's going to be difficult to diagnose a poor connection by looking at it.
This truck may be "really clean" but it is still 24+ years old.

However, another possibility is some sort of anti theft device (starter circuit cutoff) that is failing and needs to be periodically reset.
 
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Joined
Jun 22, 2020
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Florida
It's true, simple things first. I'll start looking at the connections. I guess I was hoping for a magic bullet, someone reads this and goes,Oh thats easy this is what's wrong :) Not to be.
 
Joined
Apr 13, 2020
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Los Angeles, CA
This happened to me this past weekend. Took my LC to the mounains to do some light offroading. After the first break the LC wouldnt start but all lights worked. It must have been the starter. I switched the ignition on/of repeatedly until it started up and after that no more problems with starting up. If that didn't work i was going to bang the starter but it didn't come to that.

The engine overheat 3x after that and my brakes overheated and gave up on me as I was going downhill. I need alot more work done on the LC. I'll post on the forum some questions I have sometime this week since I'm trying to do this all myself.
 
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Jun 22, 2020
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Florida
Just an update for anyone following this, the problem still hasn't reoccurred so I haven't been able to try anything. I haven't found any suspicious looking connections either.
 
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Jun 22, 2020
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Florida
Ok, it happened again. Same fix worked, disconnect/connect the negative battery cable. I tried the banging on the starter idea first, no good. Can disconnecting the battery reset the starter solenoid ? It sounds like a solenoid click.
 
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Nov 9, 2012
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Olathe, KS, USA
 
Ok, it happened again. Same fix worked, disconnect/connect the negative battery cable. I tried the banging on the starter idea first, no good. Can disconnecting the battery reset the starter solenoid ? It sounds like a solenoid click.
It can make it start in a different place or release it if it's stuck, but I wouldn't exactly call it "reset".

I would be inclined to think that maybe new battery cables are up next for you if banging on the starter did not help. I forget, did you replace the fusible links? If not, this would be a good time for that as well.
 
Joined
Oct 26, 2019
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Garden Grove
i agree with @jonheld. I think your problem is the starter cut off relay for the alarm system. If you have the factory install alarm system, its located under the driver seat. And if you have the aftermarket one, its should located under the driver side steering column.
 

davidp14

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I've had a this same situation happen to me twice before (2 different vehicles). Both times it ended up being either a ground wire or positive terminal cable.

Both times the wires looked fine.
 

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