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Old 07-04-2009, 08:08   #1 (permalink)
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Escape wont start stuck in park...

Last night, 2 minutes after turning off the enigine when working just fine I went to start it up again to move my escape. I turned the ignition and the engine would not start. The radio will come on as do the warning lights that normally come on when trying to start.
However, if I hit the brakes to try to get it out of park all lights go out and the radio quits. Also, if I turn on the headlights I hear a clicking from the power distribution box in the engine compartment.
I have tried the WD-40 on the key trick but dont have an extra key for the tapping with the hammer trick. Anyone have any ideas what might be wrong?

Thanks

EIDT: I just rememered something when reading some other posts. When I try to start the engine as I turn the key the tack, speedo, temp and fuel gauges go wacko. They spin around in random directions for a second before setting back to the normal positions when the engine is turned on.
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Old 07-04-2009, 15:30   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Escape wont start stuck in park...

The gauges going wacko sounds like it might be a loose battery cable. maybe?
That's what the Escape does after disconnecting then reconnecting the battery, then turning the ignition switch.
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Old 07-05-2009, 15:28   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Escape wont start stuck in park...

The battery cables havnent been taken off since the battery was replaced about 2 years ago and are on the posts securely so I dont think thats the problem. I also dont think that its a bad battery because all the lights and radio come on of the ignition is just in the accessories position.
I think it has something to do with the shifter not being able to be moved and the clicking coming from the power distribution (fuse) box in the engine compartment.
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Old 07-05-2009, 18:24   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Escape wont start stuck in park...

I'm just a guy who owns an Escape & an old KZ motorcycle.
I try the easy stuff first. Is there any chance the battery needs replacement?
Even though it's only 2 yrs old? But verify its age - time flies & people loose track.
Another guess would be the starter solenoid. The clicking could be the starter solenoid relay. The Chilton manual outlines a number of checks in the Starter motor section & there's a procedure for testing the relays.

It might be helpful to mention what year, engine & drivetrain, just in case someone w some experience chimes in.

PS: WD40 may not be the best thing to use on electrical components.
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Old 07-05-2009, 18:43   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Escape wont start stuck in park...

Thanks Hurk, I didnt mean any disprespect if you perceived any in my reply.
That battery is actually closer to 3 years old so that might be the issue but since it was so sudden, literally no problems starting it before this instance ill have to get a meter on it to check its output.
Thanks for the advice on the starter solenoid aswell. I'll look into it
Oh, and the WD40 wasnt sprayed on anything electrical. The advice somewhere else on this forum was to spray your key with it and cycle it through the ingition on-off a couple times in the hopes that maybe the tumblers are ketting stuck and the WD40 would help loosen them up and allow the car to start.
BTW, its a 2001 2WD V6.
Thanks for your advice, I appreciate it.
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Old 07-05-2009, 18:55   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Escape wont start stuck in park...

No offense. I just wanted to clarify that I'm not a mechanic. hee.
As for the WD40, it may cause no harm, but I wouldn't use it on my key or the switch.
It may attract dirt & dust and stain your clothes. A graphite or dry lubricant is preferable. I mentioned the battery because it it might be easy to overlook & it seems like these vehicles are kinda dependent upon good electrical supply. If it is the battery, I would look into testing the alternator.
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Old 07-06-2009, 09:22   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Escape wont start stuck in park...

As it turns out you were right :) I talked to my uncle who has been a mechanic for about 30 years and he instantly said it was the battery. The reason why I could not take it out of park is because of the safety relay between the brake and the transmission using up too much amperage from the battery and not leaving enough for the engine to start. (Same thing with the dash lights and radio going out)
You're right, sometimes the easiest thing is actually overlooked and is the proper fix. Thanks for your help!
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Old 07-06-2009, 17:28   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Escape wont start stuck in park...

I'm glad it was something easy. The gauge sweep was a clue that it might have something to do with the battery.

Edit: others have stated that the alternator on the Escape is kinda wimpy. I don't know if there's a better aftermarket unit available.
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Old 07-07-2009, 07:22   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Escape wont start stuck in park...

Quote:
Originally Posted by hurk View Post
No offense. I just wanted to clarify that I'm not a mechanic. hee.
As for the WD40, it may cause no harm, but I wouldn't use it on my key or the switch.
It may attract dirt & dust and stain your clothes. A graphite or dry lubricant is preferable. I mentioned the battery because it it might be easy to overlook & it seems like these vehicles are kinda dependent upon good electrical supply. If it is the battery, I would look into testing the alternator.
Graphite is crap and old school. It won't do anything for sticking wafers. The ignition locks come with a grease similar to white grease. Over time, with dirt, lint, and age, they get gummed up and stick. WD40 is a much better choice, followed by a silicone based lubricant.
Of course, if the key is turning the lock ok, then lube is not the solution.
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Old 07-07-2009, 10:00   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Escape wont start stuck in park...

That is good to know. I used a dry lube in my Ranger (had it for 21 yrs) & never had a problem w any of the locks. I'd still have a hard time using WD40, though. I use it for stuff that's in poor condition, but otherwise I put it in the same fixit category as duct tape. hee.
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