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Jerry, Master Mechanic
Category: Dodge
Satisfied Customers: 1704
Experience:  ASE Master tech, 30 years exp. troubleshooter, driveability tech
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I just purchased a 2005 Dodge stratus about a week ago. Over

Customer Question

I just purchased a 2005 Dodge stratus about a week ago. Over the last couple of days, an intermittent problem surfaced. Sometimes when turning the ignition key, the starter would not engage. Other times, the engine would start, but only run for a few seconds and turn off. It is obvious that the previous owner replaced the starter and the alternator, because they are both shiny new. Perhaps they thought one of these items was the problem. The battery has a full charge, and all battery cable connections are solid. This appears to be an ignition interlock problem of some kind....maybe a problem with the shifter unit or ignition switch? Another think I noticed is that the shifter handle appears to be very sloppy going from park to reverse, neutral, drive, etc. (not a solid click in any of the positions.
JA: Can you turn the steering wheel at all? And what about the key? Is it worn or damaged?
Customer: Yes, no problem with the steering wheel.
JA: Are you fixing your Stratus yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: Replaced positive battery cables, cleaned all surfaces (starter, relay block, battery post, etc. Charged battery to 100%.
JA: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?
Customer: That's it
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Dodge
Expert:  Mike S. replied 1 month ago.

The interlock just prevents shifting from park unless your foot is on the brake.

It is probably a security issue and either the key is dirty or there is an intermittent problem with the security system.

Is the security light coming on as well as the check engine light when you first turn the key to run, the fuel pump prime for 2 seconds then after 10 seconds, the security light go out as well as the check engine light go out or does either stay on or flash?

Also, try cleaning the key and try it 10 times in a row.

Expert:  Mike S. replied 1 month ago.

Is this a floor or column shifter?

Expert:  Mike S. replied 1 month ago.

Is there is no security issue, perhaps the shifter sometimes doesn't complete the neutral switch circuit, that is of course if this one is located on the shifter.

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