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Ask Vladimir Grodskiy Your Own Question
Vladimir Grodskiy
Vladimir Grodskiy, Automotive Electrician
Category: Jeep
Satisfied Customers: 2743
Experience:  I've been working with American made cars since 1992.
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It won't crank over, power is good but the starter is not

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It won't crank over, power is good but the starter is not engaging
JA: Have you checked the fuel supply? And are all the spark plugs working?
Customer: Yes
JA: What is the model/year of your Jeep?
Customer: 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo
JA: Are you fixing your Grand Cherokee yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: Yes, checked the fuel, battery, relays and fuses
JA: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?
Customer: It has already been in for the fuel pump recall.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer.

My name is Vlad.

If you starter does not engage, I would first check if you starter is Ok and if it receives power from the starter relay.

The quick way to do it is to remove the starter relay from the underhood fuse/relay center and quickly bridge terminals 30 and 87 of the relay socket to check if starter clicks and turns the engine over . Just make sure it is in Park and all clear from belt.

If it engages and cranks when you bridge the relay, then you must have a problem with the starter relay control. In this case next step is to connect the scan tool and check for trouble codes as the relay is controlled by engine computer and more electronics involved.

If the starter does not engage, then you will have to check for power at the starter motor and wire continuity between the relay and starter and if all is good, then the starter itself is faulty.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Thank you I'll give that a shot and touch base with you

Sounds good,

I might be offline due to time difference ( I am in Australia), but will reply back as soon as I am back. Thanks

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
No problem. I understand

ok

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
It is not engaging the starter when I jumper the terminal 30/87

Ok, can you check if you have +12V power at the the terminal 30 of the relay socket? Just use a test light or bulb with two wires

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
12.4 volts
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
I don't have a test light but I do have a fluke multimeter

Ok, check Fuse J17 40A make sure it is not blown. If the fuse is OK, then next step is to get to starter motor and check if you have +12V battery power on the thick cable at the starter motor and you have +12V on the small wire when the relay contacts bridged.

It could be a challenge as not good access and you might need assistance to jumper terminal when you ready to check at the starter.

Test light or just a bulb with two wires attached is better as multimeter can mislead you.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Ok thanks I'll try that it just got towed home

ok, will check your reply later

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
I checked all the fuses and all the relays when I got home checked the battery, tried to find the starter couldn't. Called and talked to a representative from the Chrysler corpy explaining the frustration. While on the phone I tried to start it again, nothing, all the lights come on, it cycles through the motions just won't crank over. After ending the call I put my tools away. Saw another relay compartment with three relays, no identification on the cover. I swapped two if the relays out, shook that relay center a little, I got back inside, pushed the brake, pushed the start button. It fired up like everything was fine, the clock read 3:08 (it was currently 10:45 pm. I turned it off a few minutes after letting it run, it started up. I drove it around, turned it off, tried again it started up.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
It appears to be somewhat resolved. Conspiracy theorist would say it was Chrysler flashing my computer after what I thought of their company and their cars. On the other hand, I swapped 2 of the 3 relays around, It started. I swapped them back, it started. But I also shook that relay center a little, so perhaps a loose connection in this unidentified relay compartment.

The starter relay should be located in the main fuse relay box. It is called TIPM ( Total Integrated Power Module). You should have identification on its cover, I mean relays have numbers and fuses have numbers and layout should be printed on the back of the cover with all description.

It does sounds like might have an intermittent starter relay issues, like burnt terminals and moving it around just restored the connection. It is hard to say as if it starts now.

Vladimir Grodskiy and other Jeep Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
This relay box is not the TIPM
It's a secondary relay center that has 3 relays inside it along with positioning for 2 other relays. Being an electrician I understand how relays can be the source of frustrating issues when troubleshooting. Thank you for your input and assistance.

This additional relay center is for Daytime running light relays, tailgate unlock replay, air suspension relay and headlamp washer if applicable etc.

The starter relay is located within the TIPM.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Thank You