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2008 Town and Country 3.8L
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So today I went to start my van and it wouldn’t start. I turned the key to the start position about 15 times total, never cranked nor started, just one “tick/click” each time.

Some background: sometimes the van doesn’t start, this is uncommon though. Over the past year I’ve noticed that it has gotten slightly worse (more frequent). But it still doesn’t occur that often, only a handful of times in a whole year, around 10 times I’d say. The strange part is that when it doesn’t start, I take the key out, put it back in and it starts right away or after a few tries. This didn’t work today.

I hooked up a jump pack to try to start it but it still didn’t start.

I jacked up the van and hit the starter a couple times and it started the second time I tried turning it on.

Took it to advance auto and had the battery, starter and alternator tested, everything was good. He said the voltage while the car is on is low, he showed me that it was about 12.6 volts. On my scan tool it was right about 14 volts at idle. He also pointed out some corrosion on the negative battery terminal which I cleaned up and I also put those felt pad things under both terminals.

For now the van is starting fine, I’ve started it a few times. Will update if it doesn’t start in the future

My question is why doesn’t my van start sometimes? Is there anything I can check? From the stores test, everything seems to be ok.
 

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Next time, try shifting to Neutral and see if it starts. If it starts regularly in Neutral the times it fails/clicks in Park, it could be the Transmission Range Sensor is the issue. That part is internal to the 62TE transmission. If it works, you may consider using Neutral as a workaround when necessary.
 

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2013 Dodge Grand Caravan
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Above advise is good, but it seems more likely that it could be the starter is starting to fail. (Hitting the starter wouldn't change anything if it's a NSS/TRS issue.) It could have one burnt spot on it. Most of the time it doesn't stop on that spot, when it does it refuses to start until you hit it.
 
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2008 Town and Country 3.8L
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys. Next time this happens I’ll put it in neutral as you stated. And yea the starter seems to be failing based on this.
 

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2008 Chrysler Town & Country Limited 4.0
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I'd say 90% chance it's the starter. Our '09 GC had similar symptoms and replacing the starter took care of it.
 

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How many miles on the vehicle?
How old is the battery?
 

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So, you hear one click, that's the relay, after that nothing. Any electrical problems other than the starting issue? If battery power were an issue, I would expect to hear a bunch of clicks from the starter solenoid trying to engage. You aren't getting that.
Hitting the starter gets it to work says something. The problem is at the starter either poor connections or a dead spot of sorts. Check the wiring and connections at the starter, clean and tighten as necessary, give the connections a spray of Fluid Film. If the problem repeats, replace the starter (or put some new parts in it).
Rockauto.com listing:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the reply Jeepman. The van does not have any other electrical problems.

The single click may be a relay like you said but what I mean is more of the engine turning over for a fraction of a second. I can’t explain it well but This video is somewhat similar to what I mean. Doesn’t sound like a relay, more like the starter trying to start. (It might be a relay but I think they aren’t this loud?)
at time stamp 01:05
In the video it ended up being a seized engine, but my engine is good.


I will definitely take a look into the connections and clean them up.
 

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That is sounding like the starter solenoid is kicking the bendix(gear) out but the starter is not turning. You could try to change just the solenoid and hope the motor is good or just change the starter as a whole and be done with it. I have seen that happen before but the motor soon went out. The motor was likely on its way and was destroying the solenoid. It was burning the contacts in it so it wouldnt send the connect to the motor... but it would still energize and move the gear out.
 

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So today I went to start my van and it wouldn’t start. I turned the key to the start position about 15 times total, never cranked nor started, just one “tick/click” each time.

Some background: sometimes the van doesn’t start, this is uncommon though. Over the past year I’ve noticed that it has gotten slightly worse (more frequent). But it still doesn’t occur that often, only a handful of times in a whole year, around 10 times I’d say. The strange part is that when it doesn’t start, I take the key out, put it back in and it starts right away or after a few tries. This didn’t work today.

I hooked up a jump pack to try to start it but it still didn’t start.

I jacked up the van and hit the starter a couple times and it started the second time I tried turning it on.

Took it to advance auto and had the battery, starter and alternator tested, everything was good. He said the voltage while the car is on is low, he showed me that it was about 12.6 volts. On my scan tool it was right about 14 volts at idle. He also pointed out some corrosion on the negative battery terminal which I cleaned up and I also put those felt pad things under both terminals.

For now the van is starting fine, I’ve started it a few times. Will update if it doesn’t start in the future

My question is why doesn’t my van start sometimes? Is there anything I can check? From the stores test, everything seems to be ok.
I have the 2009. It randomly doesn't start too!!! Grrrrrrr. The mechanics I've taken it too are still scratching their heads. They said take it to the dealership. We replaced the starter and the transmission. Wtf. Now it stalls only when I come to a stop after I've been driving it a while. And then, I try to start it and it takes a while. I'm sitting at stoplights while people honk at me! I'm trying to start it people! Ya know?! HELP!!!!!
 

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If you are handy, remove the starter from the van and do a bench test.

Replace the starter solenoid is the cheap way to start repairing.

So today I went to start my van and it wouldn’t start. I turned the key to the start position about 15 times total, never cranked nor started, just one “tick/click” each time.
…….
 

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Your old transmission was NOT necessary to replace. It just needed replacing torque convert solenoid. The symptom is very common in 2007-2010 generation minivan.


I have the 2009. It randomly doesn't start too!!! Grrrrrrr. The mechanics I've taken it too are still scratching their heads. They said take it to the dealership. We replaced the starter and the transmission. Wtf. Now it stalls only when I come to a stop after I've been driving it a while. And then, I try to start it and it takes a while. I'm sitting at stoplights while people honk at me! I'm trying to start it people! Ya know?! HELP!!!!!
 

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2008 Town and Country 3.8L
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I just changed all of the motor mounts and transmission mount yesterday and I noticed that the ground strap on one of the mounts was completely broken. Here is a picture of what I mean. I was reading other posts about the same issue I have that mention grounding issues and battery cables/connections, which I will look into. I will likely buy this part and install it even though the car starts without it. Maybe this could be the cause?

Edit: The picture I'm trying to upload is just coming up as purple so I deleted it, anyways the part number is MOPAR 4685816AA if you want to see a pic of what I mean.
 

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So today I went to start my van and it wouldn’t start. I turned the key to the start position about 15 times total, never cranked nor started, just one “tick/click” each time.

Some background: sometimes the van doesn’t start, this is uncommon though. Over the past year I’ve noticed that it has gotten slightly worse (more frequent). But it still doesn’t occur that often, only a handful of times in a whole year, around 10 times I’d say. The strange part is that when it doesn’t start, I take the key out, put it back in and it starts right away or after a few tries. This didn’t work today.

I hooked up a jump pack to try to start it but it still didn’t start.

I jacked up the van and hit the starter a couple times and it started the second time I tried turning it on.

Took it to advance auto and had the battery, starter and alternator tested, everything was good. He said the voltage while the car is on is low, he showed me that it was about 12.6 volts. On my scan tool it was right about 14 volts at idle. He also pointed out some corrosion on the negative battery terminal which I cleaned up and I also put those felt pad things under both terminals.

For now the van is starting fine, I’ve started it a few times. Will update if it doesn’t start in the future

My question is why doesn’t my van start sometimes? Is there anything I can check? From the stores test, everything seems to be ok.
You went to advance and said they tested the starter. So you took the starter out of the van and they bench tested it for you?
Otherwise how would advance have said they tested the starter while it was still in the van?
 

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2008 Town and Country 3.8L
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
They tested it right in front of me. And no it wasn’t a bench test. They hooked up a scan tool looking thing to the battery and the guy told me to start the van. After doing that and following some other instructions he’s showed me the results.

Either way I’m starting to think the starter is good and that it’s a ground issue. I’ve done some research showing it could be the ground that’s on the transmission behind the driver side wheel.

Also I scanned the van today, just because, and code P0706 came up, no check engine light though. The trans range sensor seems to be working good (nothing weird on dash and I checked the live data on my scan tool), which makes me think even more that it’s a ground issue. I also found a broken ground strap on the motor mount (posted above).
 

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2008 Chrysler Town & Country Limited 4.0
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I had the same test performed at a local Autozone, and they also told me the starter was fine. Continued to have starting issues more frequently, so I replaced the starter and didn't have another starting problem.
 

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i do hope it is a ground for you. your observation once you find the spot will determine that. probably the best way. if bad then repair ground. if all looks good then maybe try what is below.
you could just run electric wire or jumper to the starter shell from the negative pole of the battery or ground it somewhere else.
then run the positive jumper or wire from the positive pole of battery to the hot stud of starter.
and then jump a wire from the "s" connector of the starter to the red jumper on the battery and see if it starts.
this would then tell you if your starter is good.
of course i would jump the wire from "s" connector to positive jumper on battery several times during the day to confirm the starter is working.

just keep van in park when doing so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thanks for the info and hopefully it is just a ground issue.
 
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