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Ask Dodgerench Your Own Question
Dodgerench, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Dodge
Satisfied Customers: 3404
Experience:  30+ years Dodge/Chrysler exp., ASE Master with L1 certification. Driveability/ combustion specialist
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My 2002 Dodge Caravan wont start. Turn key and you hear a

Customer Question

My 2002 Dodge Caravan wont start. Turn key and you hear a click then dit dit dit. Battery is fully charged.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dodge
Expert:  Dodgerench replied 1 year ago.

Hi, welcome to JustAnswer!. This is Ed.

Your starter problem is almost certainly related to system voltage, whether it's battery-related or not. Rapid cycling of the starter when it should just be cranking is a symptom of inadequate battery capacity or resistance in battery cables/ connections. There are a couple things that can be done at home to sort this out.

First, if you have a voltmeter, test battery voltage right at the center posts both before cranking and while cranking (a helper may be needed). A fully charged battery should test at 12.6 volts and drop no more than to 10 volts with the starter engaged... and that's the outer limit. It's preferred that voltage not drop below 11. Batteries may test at a very favorable voltage without a load applied, yet crash as soon as the starter is engaged. I'll be glad to expound on this depending what results you get.

Next, hook up some good jumper cables to someone's car. Jumpers bypass the battery post-to-cable clamp connection, putting power almost directly into the cables. If this is effective, it shows that either the battery is lacking capacity or you have cable clamp resistance.

Check it out if possible and be sure to write if you have any questions or problems.