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Ghostrider
04-09-2010, 06:56 AM
Vehicle: A4 2.8 quattro Mileage: 115,XXX Year:1998

Symptoms: Occasionally, no start- turn key, nothing- idiot lights, gauges go up (fuel, etc), but no turn over. Ignition switch replaced, starter rebuilt two years ago. This morning, I hit the key, it somewhat engaged, but didn't turn over. Turned key off, it took six or so tries, and it started.

Neutral start switch?

FNK
04-09-2010, 07:28 AM
My father who previously had my current car had this problem.
He changes a lot of thing to not cure the problem.
He was burning coils often.

I changed the sparkplug, et voila! No more problem. They where very worn.

Just like when your battery charge is to low, the car will not try to start.
I believe it is related to an electric problem. A ground wire is going bad or something is not charging propertly...

Ghostrider
04-09-2010, 07:36 AM
Starter was rebuilt due to worn armature. Ignition switch was replaced due to failure of headlights, climate control, signals, etc. I am not the type who "throws parts" hoping for a solution.

MattzWarsteiner
04-10-2010, 12:00 PM
I would check the heavy + wire going to the starter for good connections at both ends and the engine ground strap. Also check the small wires for a good connection at the starter and the battery connections.

Now that the connections are done**, when it acts up, put a DMM on the battery terminals and see if the voltage drops by 1V or more. That could indicate a bad starter if you have checked the connections thoroughly. If there is no drop in voltage, either the solenoid/contactor on the starter is bad or there could be neutral safety/key/wiring problems. If there is a big drop in voltage when it doesn't start (around 5V or more) you might have an intermittent battery. Hope this helps.

**Wiring to started and engine block must be cleared as ok for these checks to be valid.

walky_talky20
04-10-2010, 12:49 PM
There is a relay in the start system. The "load" contacts of the relay sit between the ignition switch and the starter solenoid. The "coil" contacts of the relay get positive from the ignition switch (same as the load input). The last coil contact gets ground through the clutch switch (for a manual car) or the Neutral Start Switch (Multifunction Range Switch) on an Auto car.

You can eliminate the relay (called the clutch relay or "park/neutral position" relay) and the associated switch by removing the relay and just jumping the load contacts together. This will remove the safety and connect the ignition switch directly to the solenoid. Real simple like.

Also, checking the starter case ground *during cranking*. If you see the case have voltage potential during cranking, it is not getting a good enough ground through the engine/tranny ground(s). Also, check the voltage at the starter solenoid input. Make sure you don't have much voltage drop. Sometimes that little solenoid wire can get corroded or otherwise crappy so you don't get full voltage to the solenoid.

Hope some of that helps.

PM me with your email if you need a diagram.