'93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

'93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby hecktor [OP] » October 19th 2010, 3:35am

Greetings,

New member here hoping to get some insight/advice on fixing this problem I'm having with my 1993 Astro Van (4.3L RWD).

So, the other day, I climb in to get started with my daily commute. Started with the usual process of pressing the remote security pad to active ignition before turning the key. Pressed remote pad and turned key to try and start my van and got nothing. Actually a faint click can be heard, but definitely not cranking. Tried to jump the battery, but still nothing. Seems like something may be wrong with activation/deactivation of the anti-theft system???

To note, I just had a new fuel pump installed, along with a new starter (by a mechanic) last month. Its showed no signs of the battery dying to this point (no rough cranks to try to start, etc.). Checked to make sure battery side terminals were tight. Haven't had other diagnosis done yet.

NEED HELP!!!!! Thanks in advance
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby astroturf » October 19th 2010, 3:55am

Hecktor,

It sounds like you will have to rule out your security system first.

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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby RECox286 » October 19th 2010, 4:14am

X2. Add on electronics packages such as remote starters, and security systems can create gremlins. What I would do is go under the truck, and at the starter solenoid:
1. Take a test light to the small terminal, have someone turn the key to START. This will affirm if the ignition switch and associated wiring is viable.

2. If the light fails to light, then start looking up stream from the starter: Security system, ignition switch, connections, wiring, cable connections, etc.

3. If the test light lights, try jumping out the small terminal on the starter solenoid to the large terminal to see if the starter is still alive. It is not unheard of to get "bad" parts.


Good Luck

Bob
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby junwa » October 19th 2010, 5:53am

So what type of remote security pad are you using? Are you refering to a key fob or a 12 digit numeric key pad.

Today, I was just considering ways to secure my van... The Club, Brake Lock, ignition kill switch, standard alarm.
I figured I could do something funky like the old clifford number keypads...oops this is starting to feel like a hi-jack.. off
to start new thread...

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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby LEVE » October 19th 2010, 12:55pm

Seems like something may be wrong with activation/deactivation of the anti-theft system???
Why do you center in on the anti-theft system? If you've got a clicking going on... that tells me that the system may be working and there's a problem in the start system. I'd try turning on the radio (if it's got a LCD display) and see if when you start the engine if the display dims.. .or does the radio loose it's presets. If so, it's a problem with the battery, or the system drawing too much current.

Have you at least pulled the starter to check it, or checked the starter solenoid on the starter?
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby Phantom » October 19th 2010, 1:22pm

Keep us posted on this , I have experienced this before , and it was one of the 3 fuses for the remote start system that was blown , Turn on headlights and see if they are as bright as they should be, that will indicate if battery is well charged if you do not have a meter , have you experienced anything in the past that may indicate some component that is worn/weak ?
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby LEVE » October 19th 2010, 3:50pm

Turn on headlights and see if they are as bright as they should be, that will indicate if battery is well charged if you do not have a meter
This is not always true. A battery with a shallow charge can still power headlights nice an bright and fail during start. If the weather's turned cold recently, that could easily have killed a battery that's on the verge of a shallow charge.
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby Phantom » October 19th 2010, 4:55pm

This is a way to determine how well the battery is charged , if the battery has a shallow charge then that may be the reason why there is a no-start condition, if the weather has turned cold and has this problem then that would be yet another indication that the battery is weak or low on a charge,, because if the battery is in good condition and fully charged the weather should have no effect or little effect , a good battery will still turn over an engine well below 0* degrees F*
It was not a claim that is ALWAYS the case ,, but is a good way of checking on voltage if you have no other means to check it ,, ,, But if you turn on headlights and flash to brights and dims and try other electrical s such as hazards , if the battery is fully charged it will be able to handle the load with no problem, if a battery is low on charge the headlights cannot burn as brightly simply because they need the voltage to do so ..you have to be able to distinguish how bright they should be , and if the battery is low it will be easy to see,

If that kills a battery then that is a good indicator the battery is weak and low on charge because a battery in good condition with a full charge will not die just because it is cold weather.

if they are as bright as they should be then it is indicative that the starter or some other component is failing,
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby Phantom » October 19th 2010, 5:00pm

[quote="junwa"

Today, I was just considering ways to secure my van... The Club, Brake Lock, ignition kill switch, standard alarm.


Jun[/quote]

http://www.astroflex.com/Products/RemoteStart.aspx

Very Good products
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby RECox286 » October 19th 2010, 5:49pm

When I owned a Maverick, I replaced the fuel pump so many times that I decided to go to an electric, which I did. I mounted a semi-hidden switch under the dash, and that was my "security system", not that anyone would have been intrested in stealing a 15 year old Maverick with 150k on the odo (at the time) to begin with.

I suppose that A Large Black Barking Junk Yard Dog could be considered a low tech security system. Also, consider the fact that if some person is truely dedicated to the idea that your truck should belong to him (or her) there is absolutely no device that can't be overcome by some means. Putting some business cards in the doors, getting low-jack,
having a fuel pump kill switch, are probably the best bet. If the truck is stolen, how much damage can a frustrated person do in a short period of time?

Next, Checking the battery is an excellent suggestion, one that I did not mention, due to the fact that, if I am not mistaken, I was led to believe the engine was starting OK before the starter transplant took place.

Batteries are stressed during the winter, because of the conditions in the summer. Most people tend to forget that. I watch the fluid level in the cells closely year round, and mostly during the summer when the battery "cooks". When it' time for a new battery, I'm looking for the (forget what the store guide recommends) biggest, baddest, longest lasting mother on the shelf. figure 100 CCA for 60 or 72 months is not enough. Measure the battery tray and "fill it up to the max". And forget about maintenance free, there ain't no such thing. Get one that has caps so that you can see into the cells, and add distilled water when needed. When I get into the truck, I want to hear vrooom, not click.

Bob
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby LEVE » October 19th 2010, 6:46pm

biggest, baddest, longest lasting mother on the shelf. figure 100 CCA for 60 or 72 months is not enough. Measure the battery tray and "fill it up to the max".
You can get batteries that are sometimes 30% more CCA than OEM to fit in the tray, but you can actually be doing yourself a disservice. This is another misnomer. The problem with this thinking is that the way the manufacture makes the battery capacities CCA larger is to increase the plate size. However, to to that the plates must be places closer together. These plates then can be more subject to heat, vibration and sulfation than if the original smaller CCA battery was installed under the same circumstances. These batteries, over often fail sooner than the OEM battery.

If you're going to follow this method of battery selection you may want to try gel-cells or spiral wrapped batteries. These type of batteries are not as susceptible to the same problems of normal lead-acid batteries.

If you're really worried about CCA's in deep cold winters then consider a dual battery system (which can bring up a host of other considerations).
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby Phantom » October 19th 2010, 7:46pm

They also make batteries specifically for vehicles are are more prone and subject to vibration and , vehicles bouncing around on rough off-road terrain ,such as dune buggies and rocky trail driving, the cases and plate design are engineered for these conditions and can handle vibration much better than those for average car .
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby Lumpy » October 20th 2010, 6:27am

RECox286 wrote:When I owned a Maverick, I replaced the fuel pump so many times that I decided to go to an electric, which I did. I mounted a semi-hidden switch under the dash, and that was my "security system"...




I had a Pinto that all the bad guys wanted to steal the 8 track tapes from.
I mounted two car horns just inside the door on the B pillar, wired to the
door pin switches. Low tech, but it worked. Bad guy gets a bunch of decibels
in his face when he gets the door opened. I turned it on/off with a simple
SPST key switch mounted on the fender.


Don't Mess with my Jethro Tull 8 tracks!... :evil:

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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby LEVE » October 20th 2010, 1:37pm

I had a '72 Pinto I prayed someone would steal. I even left the keys in it... and no one ever took me up on the deal. How I hated that car.
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby hecktor [OP] » October 20th 2010, 3:58pm

Hi Everyone,

First want to say THANKS to those who had responded to my post! Aprreciate the time taken to try and help!!

Didn't had the time yesterday to try any suggestions, but looking to do so today. I think I'll look into testing out that new starter I had installed last month to see if its good (take the suggestion of putting a test light on it with key in start position...thanks for that piece of advice!). If that checks out, I'm leaning towards testing my battery.

Hoping it's not the alternator, since the only way I know definitively if that went bad is if I knew that the battery was good and wasn't charging as a result (meaning, if I go buy a new battery and it eventually died again soon there after, chances are it was then the alternator all along?!).

I'll be posting again on my progress either way. May need to tap into everyone expertise as I move forward with the process of elimination to determine what's wrong and how to fix.....

Thank you again!!!!!
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby hecktor [OP] » October 20th 2010, 4:13pm

To answer Jun's question, my remote secury pad has only 2-buttons on it (first button '1-dash' symbol, second button has a 2-dash symbo. They sit side-by-side on the remote pad).

To answer Leve's question,when I try to turn the engine over (turning the key in the ignition) the LED lit clock on radio and dashboard 'check Engine Light, etc. all go 'dark' in the process (while trying to start the van).They come back lit up when I stop trying. And yes, I have headlights, dome, etc. Still need to try Phantom's idea to check and see if headlights are as bright as they should be (with high beams on, hazard flashers on, etc....thanks for the idea too!).
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby hecktor [OP] » October 20th 2010, 9:06pm

OK, here's the latest on trying to solve my problem with Astro Van not starting:

Found a disconnected wire under the hood and re soldered it to find I re-instated the theft siren (that previous owner obviously had disconnected). That woke me up!!!

So, from there, I went through suggested battery check by turning on high beams/hazard flashers/interior dome all at once and looking fine (oh ya, tested the theft siren too, ha ha!).

Also, inspected four fuses that appear to be linked up/incorporated within the anti-theft lines (two 30 amp fuses located in fuse box under dash box, 1-15 amp fuse incorporated in the wiring near module under dashboard and 1 very fine 'blow-out' fuse that is hook in to the trigger wire under the hood). They all appear to be fine.

Again, I'm starting to think that there's something wrong in communication between my remote security pad and the anti theft system. The reason why I'm thinking this again is that typically, I would open the driver's door to get in and anti-theft module would beep intermittently (flashing red light on the dash) until I clicked the remote security pad to activated ignition, which then the 'intermittent beep' would turn to a 'steady beep' signifying the activation of ignition allowing me to start the vehicle. I'm not hearing that 'steady beep' sound when I push the button on the remote security pad (btw-the red light on dash would stop flashing and remain steady as well when ignition was activated and could start the vehicle!).

Can't find my test light to check starter, so if I don't get any different feedback from you fine folks (with this new information I'm supplying here), I'll probably give that a go tomorrow when I have helper (extra set of hands).

It's such a mystery to me....really hoping someone can shed some new light on the subject for me?!

Thanks in advance!!!!!
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Re: '93 Astro-Turn key in ignition and ....NOTHING!

Postby Phantom » October 21st 2010, 12:16am

Do you have a owners manual for the security system?
Maybe it can show you a way to over ride the system , if you can over ride it and it cranks and starts , you'll know the starting system is ok, Maybe it needs to be re-programmed or, perhaps when the starter was installed a wire got pinched or broken in either the starting circuit or the wiring for the security system ,is it possible to run a jumper wire across the starter solenoid to see it it will engage the solenoid or crank the engine? Just some ideas to throw in :think: :)
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