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Discussion Starter #1
Ok so 1997 f250 7.3l zf5 4x4

I got in the truck today and tried to start it. The starter engaged and did did one jerk clunk basically tried to turn over and immediately stopped and does nothing. Like the gear was stuck or something. If I pull key back and try again it's the same thing the starter does a quick try and then nothing.

I'm guessing the starter went out but I dont want to get one and it's not the problem.

Please help.
 

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Check the batteries and check all connection ends for cleanliness and tightness. My 94's starter did exactly the same thing when it went out, but you can take yours off and probably have it tested at your local auto parts store. Cheers!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks I'll try the starter. I checked all the wires and batteries are good I jumped from the solenoid and it did the same thing. I guess I'll pull the starter.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Ok got a new starter and it does the exact same thing.
 

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it could be bad batteries, bad connections, bad cables, bad neutral safety switch, or bad starter relay.
to name a few things
 

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Check your other thread.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'm cleaning the batteries and cables but I dont see how it could be that. The batteries get power to the starte and when I turn key to start is turns well it jerks like it's going to start and the whole truck moves but it's for like a split second then nothing. It's like it has power and then it loses it instantly. So frustrating.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So cleaned cables and terminals and nothing.

Could this be something in the ignition? I'm lost
 

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Did it just start happening or has the truck been sitting for a while? Automatic or 5 speed?

Have someone check the voltage on the batteries with a digital volt ohm meter when you try to start and see what the volts do.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Truck ran great yesterday no issues then sat all night got in this morning like 0930. And clunk. Batteries are at 14 volts and I'm waiting for a buddy to come so I can try the ohms on start. I feel like it has to be something dumb. Zf5 speed
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Ok so I did some reading and I checked starter and I have 15 volts on big read cable. Then i turned key to the on position and checked the small red wire and it had zero volts. Is that normal?
 

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With the trans in neutral can you turn the motor over by hand (a wrench on the crank pulley bolt)? If the truck wants to "move" when trying to start it, is there play in the clutch rod bushing or brake/clutch pedal mainshaft bushings? Does this truck have the factory dual mass flywheel? Maybe get under there, remove the inspection cover and check for any weirdness in there (excessive play, busted damping springs, etc.). Cheers!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I can turn by hand. Pedal and all looks good. Not sure on the dual fly. Or what that is.
 

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Have you checked the starter relay on the passenger side fender? Cheers!
 

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...key to the on position and checked the small red wire and it had zero volts. Is that normal?
Depends which small red wire you're talking about, and where the meter's black probe was.

But the important thing to check is voltage from the starter's large terminal (with the BIG red cable) to the Right battery's negative post (NOT the clamp around the post) during cranking. Particularly after the clunk, and the starter stops spinning, hold the key in START long enough to read the meter.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
So I am waiting on another starter. I'll get it in the morning. Before I took it out my buddy came over and he thinks that its hydro locked. So I guess I will start pulling glow plugs one at a time and turning the engine by hand. And then find which one or ones spit out coolant or fuel is this correct? One question though if it was hydro locked would I still be able to spin the engine manually with everything still buttoned up?
 

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Why would he think that it is hydro locked?

You can turn the engine over by hand with a socket and a breaker bar without doing anything else.

Back when I asked you to test the voltage I wanted you to connect the meter and see what the voltage does when you turn the key to start and hold it there for a second.

On the small red wire off of the fender mounted solonoid that goes to the starter, you won't see any voltage on it until you turn the key to start.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Bug man. When I get the starter in the morning I will test the small red wire while I have the wife start it and leave the key forward. I'll post what it does.

My buddy thought that it could be hydro locked because the starter engaged for a split second and then nothing it jerks/shakes the truck from left to right like its locked up. My thought was if I can turn the engine by hand then it wasn't hydro locked but he said it could still be locked and by hand there is no compression so I could turn it but when starting it builds pressure. I dont know if this is true or not. He also said that I could have gotten a bad new starter as well. So I'm not sure but I'll stay with the starter tomorrow and volt reading and post that.

When I test the small red wire going to the starter tomorrow while trying to start. What reading should I be looking for?
 

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No, it's not true. If a cylinder is full of liquid, you won't be able to turn it by ANY method. You can't create compression by hand, but the piston still has to move through that volume. And it can't if there's liquid there.

So you should disturb as LITTLE as possible, and continue testing before replacing ANY parts. Check voltage on the starter cable after the clunk while the key is still in START. You can set up your meter so you can see it from the driver's seat, without any assistance.
 

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The small red wire off of the fender mounted solenoid goes to the starter solenoid located on the starter which when activated closes a contact which puts the 12 volts from the large red wire to the starter winding's to engage the starter.
 
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