Help needed for troubleshooting a no crank, no start with a click - Taurus Car Club of America : Ford Taurus Forum
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post #1 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 02:05 PM Thread Starter
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Help needed for troubleshooting a no crank, no start with a click

Hi all. Thanks for reading. Sorry it's overloaded with questions, I do want to understand everything.
My 2007 Ford Taurus is having a no crank no start condition, only a click from the dash and starter relay.

I did do some maintenance by cleaning my MAF sensor and my throttlebody (with the correct CRC cleaners). I tested it immediately afterward to see if it was idling stable and it seemed to be fine (the car started normally). The next day, all I got was a click from the starter.

I had Autozone test the starter and battery, both were good, though only tested once (but I don't think they're the problem anyway). My battery was charged up by them from 75% to full.

I've also tested the starter relay fuse in the power distribution box and it is good. Are there more fuses below the steering wheel that need to be checked?

I have directly jumped the starter solenoid with 12v while attached to car and it makes a whirring noise, as if only the electric motor started and the charge never seemed to cross from the solenoid to the starter motor and the car never really cranked. Can someone explain why jumping that starter solenoid and moving my key to start was not enough to crank the engine?

I also tried jumping pins 30 and 87 with a paperclip on the starter relay. As far as my multimeter showed, with alligator clips on battery ground and the other clip attached to the pink/green starter solenoid wire ring terminal, no charge arrived at the wire when I connected the two pins (with car in park and key to on). Does this mean the starter relay circuit has a bad connection? Or do I need to either A: make sure I connect a ground to the starter relay pin (in case my NSS or PCM isn't sending the ground signal) or B: attach 12v to the NSS wires that signal it's ok to turn on the car or C: something else (like bash my head into the steering wheel)?


How do I go about testing my park/neutral safety switch? Does anyone have a wiring diagram for my NSS? I have tried jiggling my shifter around while turning key to start and no voltage went to the starter solenoid wire. I have tried starting in Park and Neutral, jiggling with both, but only receive a click

I do not have power going to my starter solenoid wire (the power wire to the starter is fine though, constant 11.8 or so).

The red/light blue starter wire, measured from the back of my ignition switch harness below the steering wheel says 11.8 or so when moving the key to start.

The starter solenoid wire is colored pink/green and it runs into a wiring harness or junction (not sure of the name). I don't get a reading from the back of wire 34 (where it seems the pink/green starter solenoid wire connects in the bottom right corner of the wiring harness box thing).

Also, is there a pink/green starter solenoid wire on the other end of this box or is it that same red/light blue wire that goes into the firewall and connects to my ignition switch harness? Or a few different colors that need testing which connect to the PCM and NSS?

What are my options at this point? What diagnostic procedures have I missed (or forgot to say I did)? Can I make a bypass to start my car? I would especially like one that still requires my key to turn and not opening my hood to access a jumper wire.
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post #2 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-19-2017, 08:50 PM
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I would suspect a bad battery or bad battery cables first followed by a bad starter second rather then all these other components that you are looking at. Just because you get 12 volts when testing a circuit means almost nothing when when it comes to a circuit being able to carry many amps like the starter circuit requires.

The 11.8 volts you referenced in this post are not indicative of a good battery at all. A very simple check might be to see what happens when the try to jump start the car with good high quality jumper cables with heavy gauge wires.
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post #3 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-20-2017, 02:24 AM Thread Starter
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I also think the battery's output seems low. But when Autozone tested the battery, the results were all good and it was giving an output of 12.6. So maybe my battery terminal connectors or the cables are corroded and need replacing. How do I go about checking this? I have cleaned them both decently well with a wire brush, and made sure they were tightened to the battery terminal. I went and checked the top of the battery terminals again and was getting about 11.78... maybe I need to check with both battery terminal connectors removed to see if that's why I'm not getting 12.6?

I tried doing a voltage drop test by putting the black multimeter lead on the top of the battery terminal and the red on the connector and measuring ohms (at 200). It showed about .3 for both sides, I moved the red around the connector and on the bare wire that shows on the other end of the connector away from the battery and it still showed that power wasn't really being lost from my battery terminal to my battery terminal connectors (I believe).

My starter was also tested by Autozone and it was fine. I also tried directly jumping current to the starter solenoid terminal, but I think I need to use jumper cables instead of the little alligator clips (it burnt some teeth off the alligator clips) and try that again. When I did directly give it power, the starter motor made an electric whirring, so AFAIK, the starter is not bad.

So shouldn't I still be seeing my starter try to crank, but too slow as if it wasn't getting enough power? Instead, I measure my starter solenoid wire and it doesn't receive any power when I turn the key. I can measure my starter pin at the back of the ignition switch wiring harness and it shows the 11.78 volts from the battery when I turn the key. That power is not arriving to my starter solenoid wire at all. Could the poor connection at my battery terminal connectors somehow preclude energy from reaching my starter solenoid wire at all?

I'm not sure what you're saying about the wires not being able to carry the amperage of the starter, can you explain further?

I forgot to mention that I have tried to jump the car with good cables, I received only a click. I did not measure for power at the starter solenoid wire or similar though (I was concerned about doing measurements while jumping, I guess I shouldn't be).

I still would appreciate anyone answering my original questions, in case I perform these battery checks (which I would also appreciate someone explaining how to perform) and it comes back good again. Specifically, the most important questions are: How do I test my NSS? What wires/does anyone have a wiring diagram link for the NSS? What happens to that starter wire at the ignition switch harness when it goes through the firewall? ((Though if someone did take the time to answer all of my questions, I would understand so much more and I would thank them every time my car started))
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post #4 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-20-2017, 06:56 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you Tom for your response and time. I changed my positive battery cable (I plan on doing my negative as well) and tried hooking everything back up, to no avail. I still only get a click. I do plan on changing my negative battery cable as well, but I strongly feel that my issue lies with either my starter solenoid cable that is still not receiving power when I turn the key to start, or maybe my neutral safety switch, or whatever else is down the line from my starter solenoid cable that would prevent power from reaching it.

I tried performing some tests again after changing the positive battery cable. jumping the car with heavy duty jumper cables, and received the same click. The car had 13.6 volts while being jumped. The starter solenoid did not receive power.

My car battery still measured 11.8 volts when I fully took the terminal connectors off. Apparently, that means it's a dead battery, but why would autozone have tested it as working fine? Even if it was near dead, there should be some voltage reaching the starter solenoid and it should chug along slowly like it's trying to work (Am I right about that?)
I can't find a wiring diagram for my starting circuit.
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post #5 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-20-2017, 07:05 PM
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Sounds like a bad solenoid or internal short in the battery. If the solenoid is clicking it is not the TRS
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post #6 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-20-2017, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
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The starter solenoid does not click because it doesn't receive power when I turn the key. I tried taking that starter solenoid wire off and measuring it while turning the key and received nothing. That wire should still show that it receives power when the key is turned to start even though it's not connected to the starter solenoid, right? I also tried measuring it while it was attached, and it did not receive power when turning key to start. How could I test to see if I had an internal short in the battery? Please correct me if I'm wrong, but shouldn't the focus be on the wire that does not receive power? My starter solenoid does not click, my starter relay does click.

So as far as I can tell from the diagram, it seems like that starter solenoid wire won't have current until the circuit on the bottom right closes as well. What is that circuit, near where it says 1093 TN/RD and then goes right?
I'm taking my battery to go get tested again tomorrow, I'll make positive they do an amperage draw test as well.

Last edited by noxxon; 01-20-2017 at 07:42 PM.
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post #7 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-22-2017, 04:17 PM
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A couple of points that you need to understand as far as all the diagnostics with a multi-meter. Reading the voltage on a wire and getting the reading is not the same as testing a circuit under a load. You can have a circuit that will read voltage with no load that is not near good enough to carry enough power under load.


Look at how simple that circuit is at the starter.

On the power side, one wire the heavy one supplies power to the solenoid at all times. The other wire to the starter is switched via the starter relay. When that terminal gets power the solenoid engages and powers the starter.

On the ground side a heave wire supplies the ground to the block.

So I think I would jump with a wire from the battery terminal to the small terminal on starter with the wire disconnected. If the starter does not spin the motor over, you have this down to just a few components. This is no different then how they are tested on the bench.

Lastly 11.8 volts is not right! I have had a number of batteries that read good voltage and will turn the lights on just fine. They will not however crank over a car. Replace a battery and all is good again.

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post #8 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-22-2017, 06:00 PM
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post #9 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-29-2017, 11:05 PM
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Have someone start your car while the headlights are on. Stand in front and observe if the headlights dim significantly ..test the battery with a DVM, measure at the battery terminals while cranking and then move the black lead to another ground point on the engine. You should be above 12v. Measure the ground resistance from battery negative to engine.
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post #10 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 06:46 AM
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Always start by cleaning your battery terminals.
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