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Discussion Starter #1
I just bought this, and while the starter has lots of power to crank it, sometimes it will not crank it. I press the clutch, thinking it has a safety switch on the clutch pedal, and sometimes that works, but sometimes it does not. Sometimes it will start to crank if the key is held to the start position for 20 seconds.. Insight would be helpful. Thanks.

329 Posts
First thing to do is to eliminate possible causes of the problem
Clean battery posts and cable terminals. Follow negative cable to chassis.
And clean grounding points. Inspect engine ground strap and clean as necessary.
Inspect ignition wire to starter solenoid and clean as necessary.

When the starter will not crank engine, locate starter relay.
Take test light clip to ground or battery negative post.
Probe the socket of starter relay.
There should be two pins with power with the key turned to crank engine.

Determine pins 87 and 30. That is the load side of relay going to the starter motor.
A jumper between 87 and 30 should crank engine.
Note: Do not short pins 85 and 86!! That will damage the ECM.
If it does not then circuit from relay to starter is faulty
If it does then control side of circuit is suspect.
This means from ignition fuse to ignition switch to clutch safety switch to relay and all wiring in between are suspect.

Another way to test starter is to put 12 volts to starter solenoid.
If starter does not crank then using a stick hit the starter.
If it cranks then starter is failing.

Note: I had intermittent no crank, no start
and I cleaned everything and replaced ignition switch
And had no problems afterward. Your experience may differ

Super Moderator
13,514 Posts
How about you stop guessing and get a test meter out? Does the car actually have a clutch safety switch - it would take me less time to find that out that it does for me to type this - by looking under the dash at the top of the clutch.

Don't spend too much time trying to locate the starter relay to jumper it - Suzuki didn't fit them on a 92 Sidekick - the only relay in that circuit is the starter solenoid.

Put a test light on the starter solenoid control terminal and turn the key to start, if the lamp doesn't light and the engine doesn't crank, 75% probability you have a defective ignition switch, the other 20% is the clutch safety switch and the remaining 5% is a loose connection somewhere in the wiring, if the lamp doesn't light, the problem will be the starter solenoid or the starter and the associated wiring.
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