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Old 06-22-2007, 18:00   #1 (permalink)
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my 2001 windstar won't start

Windstar has been acting up lately (surging) and OBD II codes reading EGR insufficient flow and bank 1 too lean so I replace the EGR valve and 02 sensor. Cleared the codes and the same ones came back on after new parts installed.

Then, couple of times driving around town I got in and turned the key and no start. The next day turned the key, all panel lights come on; turn all the way and all panel lights black out with NO noise whatsoever coming from under the hood ie.... starter clicking, fuel pump humming, etc.

Got in the manual (Haines) and diagnosed the starter by running wire from the POS battery terminal to Solenoid and starter fired the engine right up. Starter and Solenoid are good, Right?

Moved on to the ignition switch, diagnosed it w/ multimeter per the manual... good.
Then to the Transaxle relay thingie aka "neutral safety switch" from autoZone; checked the harness w/multimeter per the manual and it's good. Replaced the Neutral safety switch and still got the same problem.

Checked the fuel pump shut-off, the ignition switch relay, most other relays by switching like ones around and all fuses in the engine compartment and inside the cab box.

After using the search feature I have come up with a few more possible culprits;
Smartlock?, coil, voltage regulator, ignition control module? Could the starter solenoid still be bad? Now when I "hot wire" the starter it will crank but the engine will not start.

Any Ideas before I give in and take it to the "Dreaded Dealer"?

Thanks in advance,


MODS, posted this in the van forum but don't know how to link it, sorry for the dbl post
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Old 06-22-2007, 19:19   #2 (permalink)
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Re: my 2001 windstar won't start

When you run a wire from the battery pos. to the other side of the solenoid, you are bypassing the solenoid. The solenoid may or may not be bad, since you are bypassing it, you are uncertain if it works or not. When you try to "hot wire" it now, and it cranks but does not start, make sure you have the key turned to the on/run position. I would definitely check all connections from battery to solenoid to starter. They must be clean and tight. Also check the wire under the insulation, to be sure it is not corroded under it. If it finally cranks but doesn't start, you need to find out if it is fuel or spark problem. Check for fuel pressure at the fuel rail, and check for spark at the plugs.
Good luck and keep us posted!
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Old 06-22-2007, 19:42   #3 (permalink)
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Re: my 2001 windstar won't start

I replied in the other thread.

"Is the "Theft Light" flashing rapidly?"
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Old 06-23-2007, 08:26   #4 (permalink)
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Re: my 2001 windstar won't start

Johnny, I'm at work today so I'll have to check for that flashing light this evening butI don't remember anything flashing rapidly on the instrument panel.

Fonz, as for the solenoid I'll have to do a real good inspection on the wires but when I looked them over there wasn't anything out of the norm. Also, there are three posts coming from the starter/solenoid; when I hotwired them, 1 did nothing (the ground I presumed), 1 made a constant whine like a small electric motor turning by itself, and the other one cranked the engine but still the engine wouldn't start. My book says the starter/solenoid cannot be replaced separately so if I took it to autozone would they be able to tell me if it was bad for sure?
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Old 06-27-2007, 14:58   #5 (permalink)
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biggrin Re: my 2001 windstar won't start

Well after taking the starter to autozone where it failed the test on their machine, I got a new one and problem solved..........WRONG!

I decided to go back to the start and started checking fuses and relays when I noticed a humming sound from around the battery area when I turned the key to the Run position. I couldn't identify the exact location of the noise so I started replacing relays. Low and behold the "Powertrain Control Module" relay was the culprit. $4.99. So $130.00 worth of parts that I didn't need is still better than a trip to the dealer for me; at least I know my starter isn't going to go out anytime soon

Well, now on to the A/C compressor seized clutch in my Contour.........

Thanks for the help
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