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Discussion Starter #1
Well, just when i have the Bronco running pretty good she is starting to have some electrical malfunctions. My buddy and I were planning on going to the junkyard today to see if we could get some odds and ends. My Red Battery light on my dash was on and my battery incidated was dead on 11volts. So, we took off to Advanced Auto to check my charging system. The guy came out with his tester on wheels and said my battery is fine. I turned it off so he could hook up to the alternator. When i went to crank it my truck wouldn't start. Note. Sometimes you have to turn the key slowly to find the sweet spot. It will sound as if it dead but it will eventually start after a few attempts. Well, it didn't start this time. So, we chanded out the starter solenoid there on the firewall by the battery. I jumped in and she fired up. I even tried it 3 or four times in a row. It has never fired up so easily. We left it running while we waited for our tech to come back out with his wheel-a-tester. The little red battery light was still illuminated. He checks the alternator and says it's fine. So, i cut off the truck and go to crank it again after he is done and i get NOTHING. No chime, no sounds, NOTHING. We figured we would use his handy dandy handheld jumpstarter. He hooked it up and it drained it in about .2 seconds. Okay we thought. Shit happens. We will jump it off. This is where the fun starts. We pull up the auto S-10 jumper on wheels. When we put the jumper cables to my battery the thing started to turn over a little on it's on. No key in or on. Confused, we stood there thinking what could it be. So, i came home and jumped on FSB forums and did some research. I read about Fuseable links, voltage regulators, and a possible ignition switch among others but this was the major stuff. Back off we go to save my baby. Meanwhile my batter was getting a 1hr quick charge. Oh yeah, i read something about testing the starter. When we got back we took off the starter and had it check. It was fine. We brought the freshly charged batter back out with us. We then threw the battery in but we didn't hook up the leads. We wanted to exhuast leads and we were looking at all the stuff we researched on here. We tooks out the ignition switch from the steering column. Came out fairly easily. We had read that could be faulty and we kept it out while we hooked up the leads. We put on the negative and when the positive hit the battery the engine started turning right over. Let's say we weren't expecting that to happen at all. Scared the sh%t out of us. We managed to get the leads back off. We looked at one another and said hell, there isn't a damn key in it or ignition switch. Last resort was to change the solenoid again. Maybe a bad part, huh? We put it on, threw the ignition switch back in and stuck the leads on the battery. Everything was normal. Turned the key on, had a chime and lights. We tightened everything up and got ready so if it cranked and there were no sparks. We were hauling butt to the house. It started and it drove home fine. However, the Red Battery Light is on. Needlesss to say we didn't get ANYWHERE. My dash does show i have 12 volts though. I don't know how long that is going to last. So, does anyone have a clue what could be causing it. We have checked for faulty wiring. Didn't see any. Nothing is on. I don't have any extra lights or a "system" in my truck. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Sorry for the long story but we both thought it was pretty comical today. By the way, we still didn't make it to the salvage yard and i'm the proud owner of one good and two bad starter solenoids.


J:banghead
 

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What is the voltage at the battery terminals when the engine is running. It should be 13 - 14 volts. If not either your voltage regulator or the alternator is probably bad.

Good luck,
 

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i was readin a thread on hhere the other day bout falty alenators and that might be it
 

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alternator/regulator whatever, yes that will make it not charge

but if you read his whole write up you will see he has a bigger problem. There seems to be a short somewhere or something hook up wrong to cause it to crank without the crank wire being triggered.

could be in the ignition switch. The switch not the key cylinder. You said it has a sweet spot. it shouldnt. that tells me there is some kind of problem there.
 

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I've jumped the solenoid/relay on the fender wall. I've had to do that because I wasn't getting a good connection, which is what I had later found out. Might want to soak your cables in Coke. I did that on my friend's van. The cables were oxidized, and just dirty. Soaked them in Coke for about 1-2 minutes and they came out clean. The Coke looked like homemade apple cider when you get to the bottom of the jug. Little bits of junk floating around in the pop. Did that, charged the battery, worked fine after that. My truck will act like it's dead sometimes if it isn't able to get the correct amount of amps it needs due to a poor connection.

And you replaced the solenoid/relay, so that should be fine. I could see a bad alternator. Might want to go to that junk yard and pick up a spare, see if it'll fix your problem.
 

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sounds like your getting constant power to your starter solinoid. You need to take an electrical tester and trace the wires back to find the short/stuck closed switch.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Okay guys. I got in the truck to go to work this morning and it cranked fine but the battety light was still illuminated. Left work and the same thing.

I haven't checked my voltage yet but i'm going to do that this evening so i'll get back with you.

Steve i actually pulled the lock cylinder out. We couldn't figure out how to take the column apart right there. It looks like you have to pull the steering wheel completely off???

My solenoid has two identical post. I read on here as long as you have the battery cable on a post alone and all the other cables on the other post you are good. No matter which side. We tried the cables on both sides yesterday just to make sure it wasn't changing anything. It didn't and I even replaced the solenoid to make sure it didn't fry anything. Reminds me, guess it didn't and I can take the other one back. Thanks for the assistance. I will check my voltage this evening. Sheeesh I hate chasing wires. Espeically when you don't know how to read diagrams and know what half of them are.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Okay I read the thread and what you are saying is the starter needs it own post and everything else goes on the post with the battery cable? If that is so then yes i have it reversed. I have everything else with the starter and the battery has its own post. I don't have a front and rear post. If you stand and look down at the solenoid from the right side they are left and right. I think i have the little wire hooked up right since there is only one. I've read so many threads i'm getting confused. :banghead
 

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IIRC there is 4 or 5 wires that should share the post (Big post) with your battery, do you have ALL these wires hooked up? (We arent talking about the starter signal wire anymore that slides onto the little post)
 

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Forgive me if I am wrong, but if the starter wire and the battery wire are connected to the same post then wouldn't that make the truck crank without the key since it is getting direct current from the battery to the starter?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Well, i'm at my wits end. I went and bought a new battery, new positive battery cable, and a multimeter. I got home and changed out my battery and cable. I hooked up the negative and when i stuck the positive cable to the battery it started to shoot sparks everywhere and IMMEDIATELY ate my NEW battery terminal and cable. WTF...I have to clue what is causing this. I took my multimeter and checked for some resistance around the battery area. None that i could see. Any ideas? I've done what you guys have told me to try and nothing is working. Any other suggestions???????
 

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Discussion Starter #13
NEED HELP FAST

Alright, i'm still searching for a way to make my red battery light on my dash go away. I've changed the starter,alternator, starter solenoid, battery, both cables. I've talked to several people and everyone, even me, thought it could be one of those. Well, now everyone is beginning to think there is a short in the wires somewhere. Any clue on where i can start looking? The problem is that when you stick the positive cable to the the battery post the truck turns over and not to mention it tears the hell outta my battery post and cable. I even tore up under the dash and disconnected the ignition switch and tried putting the positive calbe on the battery post. Still the same thing. I would greatly appreciate any more advice on where i could I start looking. I just want to start tracing every single wire under my hood. I'm looking at the wiring diagram and trying to figure out where i could start. Thanks.
 

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I am not an electrician, but I do have some lucky chicken bones.
Found them on a dead guy after he was attacked and killed by a pack of squirrels. $15 shipped if you want um.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Steve that's what i've been doing. But what should i do? Are you saying that so that i can trouble shoot? OR is there a way to "rig" the starter so i can crank it some other way?
 

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Sorry if i mislead you. If i have everything hooked up excluding the positive battery post or negative, it doesn't matter everything is good. As soon as i put the last battery wire to the battery it throws sparks and eats up my terminal. However, if i have my starter wire disconnected from my solenoid it doesn't do it. I have now purchased three of those solenoids. Same thing will all 3. I will go take a picture for you.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Well, it's been over a week and i'm still stumped at what is wrong with my Bronco. Looks like i'm going to have to take her to the professionals and let them figure out. My luck they will tell me it was a burned out light bulb or something silly like that. We will see. I will keep you updated.
 

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is the truck turning over right as soon as you touch the terminal to the battery?, if so you either have the lead that should go to the starter on the same lead with the one directly off the battery or your solenoid is stuck for some reason. if they are on separate posts pull the s terminal (the slip on terminal) off and try to hook it up again if the truck cranks right away again as soon as you touch the terminal to the batt than the solenoid is stuck, replace it. if it doesnt crank right away than touch the s terminal to its post if it cranks then with no key than there is a short in the wiring from the ign. switch or your ign. or switch is shot. also one other thing, are you deffinately using the s terminal and not the i terminal right if you bought a solenoid at advance it will have both and stockers only normally have the s. and as far as your charging light check connections and make sure your fusible links aren't blown, probe on each side of them with a test light. also the look for burnt spots on the plugs goin to the alt.
 
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