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Vincent
Vincent, Ford Senior Master Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 1450
Experience:  28 years as Tech.
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2000 Ford Expedition wont start, ...

Customer Question

2000 Ford Expedition won''t start, won''t crank, just dead. Battery warning light came on dash. Any suggestions?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
The battery warning light being on, means that the alternator was not charging the battery or running the electrical system. The vehicle was then running on the battery alone. Chances are the battery is sulfated and will need to be replaced. The alternator will definitely need to be changed out.
Vincent, Ford Senior Master Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 1450
Experience: 28 years as Tech.
Vincent and 7 other Ford Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Reply to Vincent's Post: I had heard from other owners that the Expeditions had slow leaking windshields where the water could get down into the cjb and gem causing them to short out. Could this be my problem too? I have had the blower fan go on after I have turned the vehicle off and removed the keys as well as the locks locking and unlocking on their own when the car is turned off and the key is out of the ignition. Please advise. Thanks.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
The reason I brought this up is that I thought when the alternator goes out that it would completely drain my battery. My battery still has a charge. All interior lights, radio, and headlights still go on. Thanks.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

That is pretty good, the leaking windshield thing. And yes I have seen a few of those. Alright more then just a few.

But lets look at the the other possibilities first.

If the battery has a full charge, then the first thing to look at is jump the starter solenoid and see if the vehicle turns over. The starter solenoid on your truck is located on the firewall next to the battery and slightly above the engine. There is a plastic cover that is clipped over the solenoid and a couple of connectors (normally). The solenoid is a big round thing that has the battery cable going to it, it also has 2 large wires leaving the same post that the battery cable is attached to. Above the one large post is another large post that has 1 wire attached to it. That wire goes into the same loom as the battery cable. Next to those 2 posts is a smaller post with a single small wire connected to it. That is the signal wire coming from the key. If you take a screwdriver (carefully) and jump from the battery cable post to the little post, the truck should turn over.

If it does not, then we can eliminate everything under the dash.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Vincent,

Thanks for your reply. Since it is almost 11 p.m. and dark I will try to jump the starter solenoid in the morning when it is light again and I get some sleep.

Don
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
No sweat. Let me know.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Thank you for the accept, but I would really have rather waited until we got the truck running. Lets try to keep this open, shall we?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, I am heading to bring my kids to camp this morning. When I get back, I am going to try and jump the starter solenoid. I will let you know after I try that to see if it turns over or not.
Thanks.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
I will be at work shortly, but I will still be able to assist you from there.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Hi again,

Ok I connected the signal wire post with the battery cable post. For about 3 seconds it sounded like the truck was going to turn over. It just cranked though. Then, after that there was no more spark and it was dead, not cranking at all. Please advise. Thanks.

Don
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Okay, was the key on?

And I need you to understand, if the engine is cranking it is turning over. But we were just trying to test if the engine will crank over.

What is the problem with the truck. That is does not crank over, or that it does not start even though it is cranking over?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
If I use the key in the ignition, then I get nothing.

I jumped the battery cable and signal wire and it was cranking but did not start. No key in the ignition at that time.

What do you think?
Thanks.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

It will not start with the key not on. Try cranking the engine over with the key in the ignition at the starter solenoid.

What we are trying to do is isolate the cause of your concern down to one area.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, I will go out and try that and get back with you as soon as I have done that. Thanks.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Make sure that the truck is in park and that the e brake is on. This would be best if there was another person there to assist you.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I asked my neighbor turn the key. Nothing, no spark, no cranking at all now. Totally dead. What do you think? Yes it was in Park and ebrake was on too.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
No, I want the key on only and jump the starter at the solenoid.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I tried with the key just turned to accessories, and it is totally dead, no cranking at all. I am getting nothing when I jump the starter at the solenoid. I had gotten a few seconds of it cranking earlier as I mentioned in a previous post. Please advise. Thanks.

Don
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

I guess I am not getting through to you. We are trying to start the truck. The key has to be ON. Not in accessories, not off, not in any other position other then on.

When the key is on, all the systems that are needed to run the vehicle are activated. At that point you are gong to try to jump the starter solenoid and get the truck to turn over.

You are bypassing the crank position of the ignition switch, that is all we are trying here.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Yes, with my neighbor in my truck, she turned the key to On as if starting the truck. I was over the engine compartment and tried to jump the starter solenoid and got nothing. No spark, no cranking at all. It was totally dead. Thanks.

Don
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

It sounds like the battery is dead. If the truck cranked over before with the key off, and will not crank over with the key on, that means that the battery does not have enough power to run everything.

Can you get a jumper to the battery of your truck?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Yes I have a Black and Decker Electromate that I can jump the battery with. The lights and radio still work though. Could something have shorted out when I jumped the starter solenoid? I only ask since it was cranking for a few seconds and then nothing again. Thanks for all your help so far. I will jump the battery and see what happens.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
I doubt that anything has shorted out, I think that the battery is just close to the end of its service life (about 5 years for most batteries). The extra stress of not being charged from the alternator probably did it in the rest of the way. I am still leaning on the battery being all of your problems. The engine computer will not allow the vehicle to crank over or start if there is not enough power to run correctly.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Thanks. I tried to start it using the Electromate attached to battery terminals. Still nothing at all, no cranking at all. What do you think? Are you thinking that since it had started to crank earlier that it is not the cyb and gem. Are you thinking it is a bad alternator and also an older battery that has been drained a bit by the alternator? Is there any indication that it is an ignition coil in your opinion? Thanks

Don
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Hi,

Would you suggest that I purchase a new alternator and battery, install them, and then see if my truck is back up and running?
Thanks.

Don
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

I would start with a battery first. Sorry, I had to get to work, and yes I was running a little late.

What the battery does is start everything, if the battery oltage is below 11 volts loaded then the alternator will not charge. Lets get the truck running and then test the alternator.

A ignition coil will not cause the engine to not start, it will cause it to run rough, but it will run.

If yu intend to keep the truck, I would put in the best battery that I could. Personally, the batteries that go in my vehicles are only the Optima's. But I am somewhat anal when it comes to my battery and electrical system. I also upgrade the battery cables to a larger size and use nothing but gold plated connectors. Like I said: Anal.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok. I will go out to buy a good battery this afternoon when I pick the kids up from camp. The battery has a 09/06 date on it but in Florida we do have batteries die quickly sometimes. Thanks for your input on the ignition coils. I hope the new battery gets it running, then I will test the alternator. Thanks again.

Don
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Let me know when you get the battery installed, Don, and I will talk you through the alternator tests.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Alright will do. The Electromate says that it will run an alternator check, but I would like you to tell me what you suggest I do besides hook the Electromate up. I will contact you late this afternoon once I put the new battery in. Thanks again.

Don
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Basically what you are going to do is look at the voltage output of the alternator, while the engine is running, and if the voltage is above 13.5 volts, then turn everything in the truck on, A/C, lights, rear defogger, etc, and retest the voltage. It should never drop below 13.2 volts and should be closer to 13.5 volts. Also check it at 1300 rpm, same conditions.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Well, just returned from installing the new battery. The old one was definitely dead, it would take a charge at the auto parts store. The truck won't start, won't crank, nothing still. I did hook up the Electromate and I got the dreaded red light on the alternator check. Since the truck won't start, I would have to guess it is the alternator that has just gone totally bad. Does this seem to be what you would guess too? Thanks for all your help with this.

Don
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

The truck still will not start with the new battery?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
It won't even crank at all with the new battery.
It is dead.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Does the truck now crank over?

Did you hook everything back up?

What happens if you jump it at the solenoid?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I haven't tried to jump it at the solenoid. I can go do that right now and report back to you.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Also do any of the lights on the dash come on?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, just went outside and had my kid turn the ignition while I jumped the starter solenoid. No cranking at all. Interesting though. I did hear a slight clicking sound below the power steering box (or close to that anyway). What would you recommend next? I still get the red battery warning light on the dash and a service engine soon light (though that was on before it died and I had it coded as a clog in the EGR/Intake according to the technician at my local dealership.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
I think that the battery that you just bought is not too good. The warning lights coming on are telling me that the battery is hooked up correctly. However, I don't think that it has enough power to crank over the truck. Jumping the solenoid removes a bunch of circuits and sends power directly to the started. The fact that it was cranking at one point during our tests, tells me that the circuits are okay. This brings me back to the battery.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I checked the battery on the Electromate and it indicated a full charge, green light. I kind of doubted it was the battery. I will check it again in case I missed something.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Don, I want you to try something, but be careful. Take a screwdriver and jump across the two large terminals at the starter solenoid with the key off and tell me what happens.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, just tried that. I got a small spark then the engine was cranking for a few seconds until I broke the connection.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Change the starter solenoid, that thing that you are jumping.

Don, your truck is giving me a headache and a sore back. It is probably not doing you any good either.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, so I will go out and buy a new one and see if that does the trick. Do you know about how much they cost? Thanks.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Also, I see two 4.6 liters listed for a 2000 Expedition. I do not have a 'W' in my Vin. The 8th digit is a '6'.   Do I buy the solenoid for the 4.6 liter with the 6 not the Windsor then? Thanks.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
I don't think that there is a difference in the solenoids, and they should be less the $50. But that is just a guess. We are changing the solenoid on the firewall. Not the one on the starter.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Got you. I will drive out there tonight before they close and after I get the kids off to camp in the morning I will put the new solenoid in. I will let you know.

Thanks so much for all your help.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Hey Vincent,

I drove over picked it up, drove home, put it in, and guess what. I still have nothing when I tried to start the car. Please advise. Thanks.

Don
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
You are going to need a test light. Do you have one?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
No I am sorry I don't have one. What do you think could be wrong with my truck?
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

I don't know, but we are missing something and I want to go through it oone step at a time.

For starters make sure that you have the battery hooked up correctly.

Secondly, make sure that the starter solenoid is connected correctly, with the battery cable going to the lower large stud, the smaller wire going to the upper stud, and the I think it is a Tan wire with a red stripe going to the little stud between the two.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I looked over the battery and it appears connected correctly.   On the solenoid switch is a red positive that I connected to the top post and a negative battery cable that I attached to the bottom post. The solenoid switch has a U shaped connector coming from the battery that attaches to the top and bottom post on the solenoid. Lastly, I put on the small wire to the small post that sits on the right of the two larger posts. This is how it had been connected with the old one and this is how the directions also said to mount. I was frustrated and had to go out for a run and just got back a few minutes ago. Anyway, any other suggestions? Could it be a bad alternator even though the car won't start or even crank at all?
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

If you get a test light, we will figure this out.

As for the alternator, it doesn't do anything until the engine is running. There is no way that the alternator could be causing the truck to not start with what we have right now.

We are both missing something. I do not like the negative battery cable going to the starter solenoid. Lets think about this. The solenoid is a switch, that is all. It is just an electro magnetic switch. When the coil in the magnet is energized the switch contacts close. What that thing does is takes a command from the ignition switch (crank) and closes the switch sending power down to the starter. The negative battery cable should NOT be connected to the starter solenoid at all. If you have a camera and can take a photo of what you have and send that to me, I can probably figure out what is wrong. If not, then we need you to invest in a cheap 12v test light and then we can go over this and get it fixed.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I will take a picture of it and send it. Does the Expedition have a Crank Sensor?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

graphicgraphic

 

I see that on this website the maximum size of a photo that I can add is only 250k. Is there another address, like an email that I can send the three photos to you?

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Don, the pictures did not come through, and we are not allowed to give out personal information like e-mail addresses to customers.

The Expedition does have a crank sensor, but it will not do anything until the engine is turning over. We need to get back to where we were when the engine was actually turning over on the battery.

What happens if you jump a screwdriver from one of the large posts to the other like you did several paragraphs ago? Be careful.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I just jumped the two large posts and the truck cranks as if it will start.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Okay, turn the key to the on position and try the same thing. Just make sure that the vehicle is in park and that the e-brake is set.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I don't have anyone here to assist. Should I just turn the key as far in the ON position as I can and then go over to the engine compartment and jump the solenoid posts?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

I made up an email at yahoo.com

 

go to yahoo.com

 

go to mail

username is vincentford1

password XXXXX XXXXX

 

I am sending a couple of pictures of my truck engine to that email account.

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

First make sure that the truck is in park. Try to rock it back and forth and make certain that it is in park.

Then turn the key on and jump the starter solenoid.

I made the mistake of jumping a truck this way, once, only to realize that the reason that the truck would not crank over was it was in reverse. The truck shot across the shop dragging 2 techs and a service manager, as we hung on to it trying to Fred Flinstone stop the truck (dragging our feet).

As for the photos, you have them hooked up correctly, otherwise the truck would not crank over when you jump the two posts.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Ouch

I took it out of gear and let it roll back a little bit, then put it back into park.

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Good, Now jump that truck.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, will be right back and let you know.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
ok, it started. about 30 seconds later a spark/short sound came out of the engine and then some smoke and an electrical smell. I turned it off.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
did you look at the two pictures at the email at yahoo?
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Not yet.

If you look at the alternator, you will see a thick black cable running from the post on the back of the aternator. Follow that cable up to where it connects to the starter solenoid and disconnect it. That is the power feed to and from the alternator.

I will go and look at the photos right now.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, will do be right back.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, disconnected it. It was the larger cable that went to the top post on the solenoid. I took it off the solenoid post, now it is disconnected.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Don, you have one of the cables hooked up incorrectly. The red cable that comes from under the plastic shield at the base of the windshield is correct. The other cable (the black one that goes to the engine) needs to go to the same post. That is the power feed to and from the alternator.

Yes, that cable should go to the bottom post. Connect it to the bottom post and see what happens.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Oh sh*t, damn and I double checked that. Am I stupid or what. I will reconnect the alternator power feed to the same post as the other red cable. Thanks. Be right back again.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I switched it. I am throwing out those directions from the solenoid switch box. I still get the battery light on the dash and nothing when I turn the key with the cables hooked up correctly now.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Jump the solenoid. We have more then one thing going on here, and I just want to make sure that the truck will run. Lets do one thing at a time and close in on the kill here.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, I will go outside and jump start it and report back. Hopefully no more sparks, shorts and smoke. Gave me a scare.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Bad news, no it won't even jump. Do you think it fried the new Solenoid Switch when I jumped it last time and had the alternator cable on the wrong post?

The battery light had gone out when I did jump it last time. Is that good news?

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
No I think that you may have fried the starter. That cable was sending power down to the starter and it was staying on while the engine was running.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
More great news. I really thought that was how the old solenoid switch was hooked up especially since the directions for installation that came with the new one said to put that cable on the top post. I guess it is a universal directions and since my Ford has that U shaped battery cable that would be the one the directions would have meant (the black negative from the battery that would be separate for other makes). What do you think I should do next?
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

We still need to know why the ignition switch is not triggering the solenoid. The only way to do that is with a test light or a meter. A test light is the cheapest way.

When you turn the key to the crank position that tan wire with the red stripe at the solenoid should see 12 volts. That is where we need to head to next.

If you let the starter cool down it may come back to life.

And I am going to head to work. I do have a computer at my work station and will still be able to help you out from there.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Ok, thanks. I will see if I can get the small ignition wire tested at the solenoid if I can get either a test light or a meter and can get the truck to jump start again.

This may take me a while too. I don't know if anyone near my house has one, and the autoparts store is about 30 minutes away.

I will get back to you later today, maybe by this afternoon. I don't want to run out and get a test light if I burned out the starter too. I will need to get a new starter while I am at the autoparts store if mine is fried. Then, I will need some time to install it, then try and jump the truck again, and use the test light to test the voltage at the solenoid of that small ignition wire.

Thanks again.

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Don, part of that is my fault for not looking at those photos before I had you try to sart the truck.

If I had gotten you to get a test light right from the start, we would have been through this already.

The starting system on this vehicle is pretty simple and we should have knocked this out in no time. But we will get it figured out and get the truck back on the road.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thanks. I am getting another starter because the truck isn't jumping/starting anymore. I must have fried it. I am also getting a voltmeter to test that ignition wire at the solenoid switch. If it reads low voltage (below 12 volts) then what do you think would be the problem. Is it the ignition itself?

Don

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

The ignition system, has nothing to do with the engine cranking over.

The wire that turns on the starter solenoid is not an ignition wire but a trigger wire. It just happens to come from the ignition switch, because we do not call the ignition switch the "vehicle's electrical system activation switch".

When you get a test light, and please use a test light. That way there will be no confusion with trying to read a meter and it will be dollars cheaper. Plus it will have more use later on.

When I said check for 12volts at the trigger wire, that can be just the test light lighting up fully. You will have either a lit light or an unlit light. We will look at this as a yes / no testing procedure. Yes the light lits, no the light does not lit. We can figure out what is wrong with the truck and it should be something simple, we just both need to be on the same page.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Ok, I will get a testing light.

Unfortunately, we are leaving for vacation tomorrow. I was hoping to have the truck fixed for the trip. We will have to use our smaller VW. Anyway, we won't be back until Saturday, July 5th. I do not know if you post on the weekends at justanswers.com or not. If not, then I will contact you (with new starter in place, and test light in hand) by Monday July 7th.

Is it alright for me to keep this thread open until we get back from vacation?

Thanks.

Don

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Don: I certainly do post on the weekends and do most of my Just Answer then. But we will talk when you get back from your vacation. I will daily stop by and say hi just to keep the question open.

Enjoy your vacation. And the VW will get better fuel mileage anyway.

Cheers

Vince

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thanks Vincent. We are heading out this morning. Yes, our VW is a diesel but it is smaller and I have all girls plus my wife so it is hard to pack lightly. I ordered a test light online and it will come in while I am out next week. Next weekend when I get back, I will put the new starter in. Once I have it in, I will let you know so that you can walk me through the next steps for testing. Thanks again.

 

Don

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
I hope that you are enjoying your vacation.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Hey there Don:

It is Sunday evening, you are still on vacation, and I am still at work.

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Hope you are driving safe.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

You are still on vacation and I am still at work.

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Good Morning!
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Hi Vincent,

We just arrived back home. Unfortunately, we are having a heavy thunderstorm right now and I won't be able to get out to put the new starter in right away. I will get back with you after I have the chance to put the starter in. Hope you had a great 4th of July. We were at Disney's Magic Kingdom for the 4th and my kids were loving it.

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Let me know when you are ready.

Glad that everyone had fun on the vacation.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Hey,

I was working on the starter before it got dark. I was able to get the two lower mounting bolts off. I tried to reach with a ratchet wrench the top mounting bolt. I had to feel around for it, then I put the socket on it, but I could not get the ratchet onto that. Do you have any hints or suggestions as to how I can reach that top mounting bolt with a ratchet? Is there some other speciality tool that would make it easier? Thanks for you help again.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Vincent,

 

Are you around today?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I got the old starter out. The new one is missing one of the black rubber caps that sticks out the side of the starter. I hope it is not needed. That top bolt took me another 45 minutes to carefully reach and turn this morning.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

I have the new starter in. I believe I installed it correctly. There is one ground wire attached to the solenoid that came with the starter like my old one, and it goes to the bottom mounting bolt. Then, the other large screw coming out of the solenoid has a large black cable attached to it that I believe runs all the way up to the top of the engine. Last, the smallest screw has a small black cable attached to it. Does that sound correct?

Oh, I used the black rubber covers from the old starter on the new one that was missing.

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Don: I take it that you had fun with that upper bolt. There is no secret to getting it out, and yes we hate it as well.

It sounds like you have it hooked up correctly. The large cable comes from the battery, the small wire comes from the starter solenoid.

So, what are we going to do next?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Hi. You had suggested walking me through some checks with the Test Light I bought. I have to tell you, that we here in Florida are getting our daily thunderstorm (this one started like 3 hours ago). Some sunshine state huh? Anyway, I am still thinking it has to do with something between the ignition and the solenoid switch. Could I have a bad ignition, or ignition ground?

Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

I doubt that there is a bad switch or ground. There may be a bad neutral safety switch though. So what we are going to to is when you get the battery hooked back up, I want you to disconnect the trigger wire from the starter solenoid (on the firewall) and hook the test light up to the ground side of the battery, place the other end into the connector of that wire. Then I want you to turn the key to the crank position and watch the test light.

If the light comes on then the circuit is good.

If the light does not come on the circuit is not good.

 

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
You will have to clarify a bit for me. Electrical systems is definitely not easy for me. I disconnect the small capped wire from the starter solenoid. Is that the one? And use the clamp on the test light and clamp it to the side of my batter that has an extra small wire for grounding(I don't recall if it is the positive or negative side). Anyway, if this is correct, then I turn the key to the on position and see if the light goes on. Correct me if I misunderstood. Thanks.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Look at the battery it is marked + or -. The negative one is normally the one closer to the firewall, the positive normally has red cables going to it.

Just hook the end of the test light to the battery clamp on the negative side of the battery.

Yes disconnect the small capped wire from the solenoid and insert the test light end into the connector on the wire.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I actually understood that. Wow, I am surprised. Yes, my negative side of the battery is closest to the firewall. I probably need another 10 minutes before I head outside to the driveway. We are still having some thunder and a light rain. After I use the test light as you have explained to me, I will report back to you. Thanks.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, I went outside and used the test light. The light came on red. I have the Innova 3810 Test Light. What next?
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.
Hook the wire up to the solenoid and try to start the truck.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I just tried to start the truck. No sounds, nothing. Just like before.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Does the starter solenoid click?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Do you mean the one on the firewall? I will go listen for it again. Be right back.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I just tried turning the key again. I hear a clicking that sounds like it is coming from under the dash. I really can't hear a clicking from the engine compartment. I didn't have anyone else here to turn the key for me while I was out in front over the engine to listen for it though.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

That is probably the solenoid that you are hearing.

Okay, jump starter solenoid like we did before and see if the starter will turn over. With the key off, using a screwdriver from one larger lug to the other. Carefully.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, will try to jump starter and will report back to you.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, with the large screwdrive jumping the posts on the solenoid the starter was turning. Key was off as you told me to do.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Okay, I want you to jump from the bottom lug to the small connector. You will have to disconnect the trigger wire.

What we are going to do is jump battery power to the trigger of the starter solenoid.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, I will report back in a minute or two.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, Vincent. I jumped the bottom post with the trigger post and the starter turned like it did when I jumped the two large posts on the solenoid.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Don:

From everything that you have told me the truck should start.

You are getting the test light to come on when using the key and testing the trigger wire to the starter solenoid, Correct?

If you jump power to the starter, the engine turns over, Correct?

If you jump power to the trigger lead on the starter solenoid, the engine turns over, Correct.

Right now, with everything hooked up, the truck should start.

The only thing that I can come up with is that there is a lot of resistance in the circuit from the key to the solenoid and you are just not getting enough current to the solenoid for it to work.

We may be back at the fuse box and some corrosion there. Normally that causes a lot of other problems, like the alarm sounding, the radio not going off, the wipers working on their own, interior lights doing stupid things, etc.

If you turn on the key and jump from the bottom lug to the trigger connection I am betting that the truck fires right up.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I did have the door locks locking and unlocking with the truck turned off and the blower fan just went on like the A/C was trying to stay on after I had turned off the truck. This was happening the week prior to it not starting. I can try to jump start it if you want with the key turned on.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

Those are signs of a bad fuse box, gem module. Right now, the truck will start and run with jumping the solenoid. We already know that.

You can, by jumping the starter solenoid, drive the truck, but it will not be reliable. I wish I had a better answer for you, Don.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
At this point would you recommend that I purchase a GEM and CJB? If so, would there be any risk if I purchased a used one from a salvaged Ford? Also, I would think that they are fairly easy to install, is that correct? Thanks.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
2000 Ford Expedition 4.6 liter. Also, would I have to purchase the exact year? I believe the Expedition was the same model from 1997 until 2002. Would any other models work that have a 4.6 liter or does it have to be one specific to the Expedition? Thanks.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Another question for you. I saw a Technical Service Bulletin about the GEM failures for my year Expedition. Does Ford help pay for the cost to replace, like a recall? Just wondering.
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

You have to purchase the ones that are for your specific vehicle, year, options, etc. They are not hard to replace, but cannot be done at home as the GEM has to be programmed. That can only be done at a dealership.

Personally, I would not put in a used gem or fuse box. If you decide that is the direction that you want to go, keep in mind that there is not normally a warranty on used electronic parts. And also keep in mind, you will need to have the windshield resealed, as that is where the water is coming from.

A technical service bullentin is just that, to tell technicians that there is a possible problem in this area and here is the fix.

A recall is mandated by the Government and is only really placed on items that have safety or emmissions effects. Neither of those apply to your concern. Also there is not a TSB on your truck for that issue. I just went through them to make sure.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Thanks. Good point about the windshield. I wasn't thinking that far ahead about the cause will just ruin another GEM/CYB. What would you estimate the cost of the parts, and service (installing, reprogramming, and the windshield needing a reseal)?
Expert:  Vincent replied 6 years ago.

I have no idea. We normally have a glass company do any glass work and that includes resealing.

I cannot remember how much we charged the last time that I did a GEM and Fuse box, it has been several years (living in California, we don't get that much rain, but we do get fires) and that truck was from out of state. I would guess around 2 hours labor and then the parts cose, but that is just a guess.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

I wish I knew how much the parts were new. Then I could estimate the labor into it. We really like the truck and would hope to be able to repair it and keep it for a long while yet. I just don't know if it runs a couple of thousand, then we may not want to invest that on the truck.

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