Minivan doesn't start reliably


Old 12-29-18, 07:46 AM
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Minivan doesn't start reliably

2007 Town and Country. New battery because that was what we thought the issue was.

Most times the van will start without issue. Occasionally, like today, there will be a single click, all the lights on the dash light up, then nothing. I attached the battery charger then went back 15 minutes later. The charger said the battery was full. I tried again and still just the one click and lights.

I turned the key back then forward a few times and on the third try the car finally started. It was a weak start though, as if the battery was low.

My research online makes me think either the ignition switch or the starter need to be replaced. Or maybe it's something else I haven't found yet.

Can anyone shed any light on this situation?
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Old 12-29-18, 08:49 AM
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Battery connections first. Check/clean at the battery and at the starter. If the battery terminal end(s) have ever been replaced with one of the bolt-on replacements, they are notorious fore eventually giving bad connection. Starter more likely than ignition switch. Can check this when it doesn't crank by rapping on the starter housing with a hammer (moderate tapping, don't beat the crap out of it and watch what you are hitting). If then immediately will crank, likely starter bad.
Old 12-29-18, 10:21 AM
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Check/clean at the battery and at the starter.

Dont forget the ground connection, they are as critical as the positive connections!
Old 12-29-18, 10:38 AM
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Also, consider bad cables. Its not unusual for corrosion to work its way from the battery post connection & under the plastic covering. If that's the case, you'll never see it. The corrosion will keep voltage from making its way through the cable. If your gonna trace the cables, just spend a few bucks & replace them while you're at it.

Another cause is the solenoid. Check connections & cables on there (some mfg's put the solenoid on or in the starter). I don't know what Chrysler does now so, if its separate, check that before replacing a starter.
Old 12-30-18, 06:53 PM
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Thank you for all the good advice. I know what I'll be doing tomorrow.

Happy New Year
Old 12-31-18, 11:20 AM
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How old is the battery? Sometimes a battery charger will show a charged status, but the battery is failing. Probably a low electrolyte, or a failing cell.

If four years or older, you probably just need a new battery. Get a Costco one, they are well made at a price that is hard to beat.
Old 01-02-19, 05:11 PM
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New battery because that was what we thought the issue was.

From post #1 ........................
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