weird random keyswitch disfunction

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Jan 12, 2008
West MI near GVSU
My wife's '95 hasn't been starting so well lately. The starter works fine, but it seems like something is goofy with the keyswitch. It seems worse when the temps overnight are at or below 0F. Once the truck has warmed up and has been driven, the issue doesn't appear so readily.

Today I removed, cleaned and installed the switch-too many times...

After cleaning it, I had the guts of the switch 180* off and had to take it all back apart. With clean contacts, it still had the weird hesitation on a cold start.

Does anyone have any suggestions?
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The battery is fresh, the alternator is fresh, but this problem started arising when the extreme cold set in outside. On Wednesday while trying to start the truck for a warm up, in the start position nothing happened until I smacked the bottom of the column/kick panel with my left hand. Thursday the smacking trick didn't work, but 5 minutes after I gave up I tried again and it fired.

It's all or nothing. It's related to the cold. I cleaned the contacts up inside the switch, but won't know how effective this was until my wife drives it a bit.
Something inexpensive to try - a brand new cut key. Maybe the cold is constricting the metal in the key switch just enough for you not to get contact. Just a wild guess. I had a worn key that made starting difficult.

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