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2003 Grand Caravan, no crank

09-20-2007, 06:56 PM
I have a 2003 Grand Caravan, 3.3L, 75,000 miles. The van suddenly will not attempt to start. The strange thing is that when the key is turned to RUN I cannot hear the fuel pump. The normal 2 or so second on growl at the initial key turn is not there. When turned to start the clock on the radio goes out and no crank. I have found that the start relay is not passing on the signal to the starter. If I jump across the two pins going to the starter, the starter cranks fine. The van will still not start because I believe it has no fuel,due to the fuel pump not running. I thought first that it must be the nuetral safety switch but does that have any control of the fuel pump also? I have found that the nuetral safety switch reqiures that I remove the valve body for access. I am not very sure that it is the problem. Does anyone have any thoughts or a similiar experience ?


09-20-2007, 07:30 PM
Need to clarify a bit to be sure. You are jumping between no start and no crank. To me you are descibing a no crank issue. When you turn the key the engine does not begin to rotate correct? Do you hear a click when you turn the key either from the starter solenoid on the starter and/or starter relay in the fuse/relay panel next to the battery.

09-21-2007, 01:20 AM
No, I do not hear a click. I have measured at the starter relay while it is connected with a VOM. The control side of the relay gets 12.5 volts when the key is turned to start on BOTH poles. Meaning that one pole is not getting a connection to ground and therefore cannot pass the current to get a click which is the sound I should hear when the relay is energized. When I stated I jumped across the relay, I mean the other 2 poles that connect the starter solonoid to the battery. This is OK, it will crank if if shorted with a piece of wire. That told me the problem was not at the starter but at the relay or at what controls the relay. It appears that one pole of the relay never gets grounded, I believe that is the pole which may be controlled by the nuetral safety switch and probably some other things I do not know of.

Keep in mind that even though I could force it to crank ( by shorting the 2 pins on the relay socket) it did not start. That was my reference to the fuel pump that I never hear now.

09-21-2007, 02:26 AM
Oh no! This may or may not apply but a schematic for a 98 shows the ground for the starter relay coil comes from the PCM. Might check the contacts on the PCM connector. Of course it doesn't even show the neutral safety switch but, you and I both know it's in the circuit. Can't expect much more from Haynes.

If fuel squirts (not dribble) out the shrader valve test port on the fuel rail, the pump is working. If there's no squirt try checking for spark when you jumper the relay and make it crank. If there's no spark either, maybe the ASD relay has been deenergised or has failed. That sure doesn't explain why you're not cranking though. Big stretch but, maybe you have an abnormal fail mode in the PCM. Not a usual step for a no crank issue but, have you checked for codes?

Though I know it's possible, I don't recall a no ground at the starter relay coil issue in the forums. You may be making forum history.

09-21-2007, 05:32 AM
sounds like you need a start relay... possibly. i believe the radio and instrument lights going dim is normal --- vehicle uses all battery power to start. first check your relay...I think its the same relay as the other two beside it(check part numbers) and swap it out. also test relay and circuit by...
Relay Test
The starter relay is located in the Power Distribution Center (PDC) in the engine compartment. Refer to the PDC label for relay identification and location.

Remove the starter relay from the PDC as described in this group to perform the following tests:

A relay in the de-energized position should have continuity between terminals 87A and 30, and no continuity between terminals 87 and 30. If OK, go to Step 2. If not OK, replace the faulty relay.
Resistance between terminals 85 and 86 (electromagnet) should be 75 5 ohms . If OK, go to Step 3. If not OK, replace the faulty relay.
Connect a battery B+ lead to terminals 86 and a ground lead to terminal 85 to energize the relay. The relay should click. Also test for continuity between terminals 30 and 87, and no continuity between terminals 87A and 30. If OK, refer to Relay Circuit Test procedure. If not OK, replace the faulty relay.Relay Circuit Test

The relay common feed terminal cavity (30) is connected to battery voltage and should be hot at all times. If OK, go to Step 2. If not OK, repair the open circuit to the PDC fuse as required.
The relay normally closed terminal (87A) is connected to terminal 30 in the de-energized position, but is not used for this application. Go to Step 3.
The relay normally open terminal (87) is connected to the common feed terminal (30) in the energized position. This terminal supplies battery voltage to the starter solenoid field coils. There should be continuity between the cavity for relay terminal 87 and the starter solenoid terminal at all times. If OK, go to Step 4. If not OK, repair the open circuit to the starter solenoid as required.
The coil battery terminal (86) is connected to the electromagnet in the relay. It is energized when the ignition switch is held in the Start position and the clutch pedal is depressed (manual trans). Check for battery voltage at the cavity for relay terminal 86 with the ignition switch in the Start position and the clutch pedal is depressed (manual trans), and no voltage when the ignition switch is released to the ON position. If OK, go to Step 5. If not OK, check for an open or short circuit to the ignition switch and repair, if required. If the circuit to the ignition switch is OK, see the Ignition Switch Test procedure in this group.
The coil ground terminal (85) is connected to the electromagnet in the relay It is grounded through the transmission range sensor only when the gearshift selector lever is in the Park or Neutral positions. Check for continuity to ground at the cavity for relay terminal 85. If not OK with an automatic transmission, check for an open or short circuit to the transmission range sensor and repair. It is grounded by the PCM ( if the conditions are right to start the car. For automatic trans. cars the PCM must see Park Neutral switch and near zero engine rpm. For manual trans. cars the PCM only needs to see near zero engine rpm. To diagnose the Park Neutral switch of the trans range sensor refer to the transaxle section for more information. Check for continuity to ground while the ignition switch is in the start position. If not OK and the vehicle has an automatic trans. verify Park Neutral switch operation. If that checks OK check for continuity between PCM and the terminal 85. Repair open circuit as required. If OK, the PCM may be defective.let us know if that helps.

09-21-2007, 07:37 PM
Thanks for your thoughts they have all been very helpful. I have verified that both the fuel pump and the starter relay are controlled by the PCM and both are not getting a signal to turn on. I have also verified that the PCM IS getting the signal from the start switch (key switch) at its input. My last hope is the nuetral safety switch. Does anyone know what pin and what connector of the PCM this is connected to? I have heard that a defective PCM must go to a dodge dealer and you must buy a new one that is programmed with your VIN. I was so hoping for a junkyard part. If no one knows I will buy a subscription to alldata as my last resource for the connection point of the nuetral safety switch.

09-22-2007, 03:33 AM
I appologise if I missed it but, did you ever check for codes? A P0601 (scanner code) or MIL code 53 (key dance method) means your PCM is toast. You can have your PCM repaired.

No help otherwise. This guy is going to hate me but, try sending RickMN a private message. Third time today. If anybody can give you more info, he can. 1thunder is another.

A little PCM info:

09-22-2007, 09:35 AM

I have tried the key dance and cannot get any code. It should at least display the battery disconnect code and it does not. All I get is the vehicle miles on the indicator. I know this function did work because I used it about 6 months ago. I cycle the key, on-off-on-off-on, right? Could this be an indication of the PCM not working?

09-22-2007, 10:21 AM
Hey agian,
this problem sounds like something simple and overlooked. Please check to make sure the shift lever is in the park position. the transmission range sensor has several inputs from the trans. cycle the lever thru and back to park. check other things too. does your vehicle have a transmission mode switch (auto stick feature). check the position of that switch and also your cruise control lever position.
( my sequia had a similar problem because my 2 year old moved the cruise control lever down while vehicle was parked and not running --- ignition would come on but could not turn vehicle over-- i sat there in the heat for 25 minutes b4 i figured that one out.)

You where asking about terminal information on the nuetral safety switch... the switch (range selector) has several terminals on it and only sends a sense to the pcm (don't know if that is a ground or not). park/ nuetral is connector pin 10 on the switch and pin 76 on connector c2 of the pcm.

other posters-- any help on my post about relays clicking and short to ground problems -- any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

09-23-2007, 07:38 AM
jodos4633 I appreciate your help.

I was hoping for the something simple solution also. Believe me I have tried everything I could think of many times. My last hope was the nuetral safety switch. I checked it at the PCM connector with an ohm meter to ground. Park and nuetral are a short and all other positions have 600 or so ohms resistance. It therefore appears good.

The reason I get no code readout (with key dance) has me suspicious that the PCM is dead, I know it should show the battery disconnect, it just gives me the milage like it is not working at all. Does the PCM have to be installed by the dealer? What are my options there? I see a recent poster has replaced one himself from ECU DIRECT (although now has other problems). Can they do the VIN programming also? It all seems expensive but the dealer is always extremely high. Anyone with recent PCM replacement experiences ?????

09-24-2007, 01:06 AM
Bit more info:

This talks to the key dance on your generation van (2001-2007): The PCM is the heart of the self diagnostic system. Yes it could cause you not to get codes. Before you jump there I would either buy a scanner or find someone who has one. Thats the best way to read the codes. AutoZone reads them for free but, you have to get the van there.

I've read in several places the PCM has a Federal Emissions warranty of 8 years and 80,000 miles. Might check with your dealership if it comes to a PCM change.

Found this:

09-26-2007, 06:00 PM
UPDATE: Van is covered under 80,000 mile 8 year warranty. I had it towed and the dealer has confirmed the PCM is bad. They should have a new one tomorrow.

Strange that it went bad on start up, or maybe it was is in a limp mode and my wife did not notice when she last drove it. Anyway, I'll post if anything new is learned. Thanks for all your help everyone!!

09-27-2007, 02:28 AM
Only the second time I've heard of a no-crank going to the PCM. Glad to hear the dealership is taking care of you. Waiting to hear you're on the road again - without a tow truck.

09-28-2007, 04:45 AM
Can you explain this warranty thing on the PCM? Just wondering cause I have chop off an arm and two legs to pay for mine. It had 73,000 on it at the time it went. Thanks

09-29-2007, 08:12 AM
The Chrysler warranty covers the PCM for 8 years or 80,000 miles. My van had 76,000 miles and is a 2003, therefore it was still covered.

I picked up the van yesterday and all is well.

06-29-2015, 07:35 PM
This forum helped with mi no crank issues. Just to add after asking all the checks that were referred to I concluded that the ecu was bad. I had a black key so I just went to a junk yard and found a non security ecu with the identical part number and to my surprise after hook up the vehicle started without a glitch. Thanks people

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