1988 Wrangler intermittent no crank issue


KenO88Wrangler

New Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2021
Messages
4
Location
Brielle NJ
New to forum - tIa for assistance

New to me (3 days) 1988 Wrangler w/ Manual tranny - intermittently when turning key, starter does not turn over - hear relay (or what sounds like relay) but it will not crank. Leave it for 20 mins, and it will crank and start. PO had a mechanic look into it - cleaned up contacts from starter backwards (not sure how far he got) - issue went away (as per PO) but came back after I purchased and took it home (great).

thoughts on where to start? anyone else experience this? Appreciate it
 

Gilaguy23

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Joined
Apr 12, 2021
Messages
139
Location
Q town New Mexico
Electrical can be a challenge for sure. Bad battery cables that look perfect, dirty connections, a bad starter. Might sound screwy but next time it wont crank over take a hammer and tap on the starter body a few times and see if that does the trick.
 

jeepjoe43

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Lifetime Supporting Member
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Dec 4, 2020
Messages
546
Location
Black Canyon City, AZ 85324
Had a similar issue that turned out to be a poor crimp on the cable to the starter.
Found it when checking the battery connections and it pulled completely out of the connector.
 

Gilaguy23

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Joined
Apr 12, 2021
Messages
139
Location
Q town New Mexico
I cant say Im sure the early wranglers had a clutch interlock device. Ive seen perfectly good looking cables be bad internally with corrosion you cant detect. Probably gonna be tough without a digital volt meter. You could check resistance of cables,voltage drops, see of the starter or other areas are even getting voltage when turning the key,bad grounds, that sort of thing. Bad as it is being its getting worst may be a good thing to help pinpoint the source once completely dead.