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Starting Issues?

Arminta

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Poplar Bluff
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What I Drive
2011 Ford Fiesta SE
#1
My 2011 Fiesta has been having starting issues. When I turn the key to the 'on' position all the lights and dinging come on. But when I turn it to the 'start' position nothing happens. I don't hear a click or anything. It's like it is still in the 'on' position. I read somewhere that it could be the way the battery is grounded to the finder well, and to fix it you add another cable from the negative post on the battery to the location where the wires are that come off the finder well and go to the rest of the engine. So, I did that but the problem still persists. Yesterday, I checked all the fuses and relays. I switched one relay with another to see if the one was bad, (they were the same exact type of relay). But this time, when I tried to start it I didn't even get the dash lights. It was like I didn't have the key in the ignition. I then switched the two relays back to their original slots and tried again. Still nothing. So I took the battery to get it tested and they said it was a good battery. I took it home, put it back on, and then rechecked the fuses and relays to make sure they were all inserted all the way. Then tried starting it again and it starts right up. ??? Today, I checked all the ground wires I could find to make sure they all had good connections. Even the one on the starter. I found one that needed to be tightened down a bit, but not much at all. More like a quarter of a turn. I don't know if that will fix the problem.

I am stumped as to what could be happening. All this started after getting it back from the dealership from replacing the clutch (manual). Before it went in I didn't have any issues with starting it. If anyone might know what else may be causing this problem I would really appreciate the input.
 

Handy Andy

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Grand Rapids
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MI
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2018 Ford Fiesta SE HB
#2
Hmm, This may be the "Starter interlock" function.

The Clutch requires a plunger switch to be pressed, another to release (when you operate the clutch an A-B to B-A switch function occurs - long story)

And otherwise press, and hold - the Brake pedal - and try again.

At least the Brake is the override if you have troubles with the A to B to B to A switch routing.

Else one of the switches is not reseated properly and is left in a position that the ECM sees as faulty and won't clear during driving, then it will "lock out" and ignore the clutch being pressed and then you have to apply and hold the Brake pedal to clear it and start the car from now on.
 
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A

Arminta

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Poplar Bluff
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2011 Ford Fiesta SE
Thread Starter #3
Hmm, This may be the "Starter interlock" function.

The Clutch requires a plunger switch to be pressed, another to release (when you operate the clutch an A-B to B-A switch function occurs - long story)

And otherwise press, and hold - the Brake pedal - and try again.

At least the Brake is the override if you have troubles with the A to B to B to A switch routing.

Else one of the switches is not reseated properly and is left in a position that the ECM sees as faulty and won't clear during driving, then it will "lock out" and ignore the clutch being pressed and then you have to apply and hold the Brake pedal to clear it and start the car from now on.
I may have a look at the plunger switch. Is it the switch at the clutch pedal inside the car? If so, I know right where that is. Today I tested to see if it was a fuse or relay that may have caused the 'no lights on the dash' issue I mentioned by pulling one out at a time and checking to see if the lights came on. I found that there was one fuse, a square one, that was the culprit. I don't think I had it seated all the way, hence why it worked after I made sure all of them were pushed in after having the battery tested yesterday. If it starts in the morning I'll be taking it to my mother-in-law's for Thanksgiving and hope it starts when I go to leave. Unless this issue shows itself again I won't know if that fuse was the problem the whole time or if it may be the plunger switch. I'll try to give an update in the next few days, or sooner if the problem persists.
 

scotman

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#4
I would be inspecting that safety switch on the pedal frame. Making sure that you have clean and tight ground connections is also critical.
 
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Arminta

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2011 Ford Fiesta SE
Thread Starter #5
Update: Well, I replace the switch under the clutch peddel. It seemed to fix the problem for a few days, but now it started doing it again. This happened before I replaced the switch, where the problem would seem to stop then come back a few days later. So I'm not sure if changing that switch had anything to do with it.

I checked all grounds, fuses, battery, connections to the starter solenoid and starter, grounded the battery in a different location and changed that switch. The only thing I can think it might be would be the ignition where the key is inserted or the chip in the key? I don't know if the battery in the key would cause the problem either. If those don't turn out to be the problem then I'm guessing it is in the wiring harness somewhere.
 

Handy Andy

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2018 Ford Fiesta SE HB
#6
Well, since you brought that up - the "My Key" may not be directly related, but it does relate to a security function in the starter interlock - the once you turn the key all the way, and the engine doesn't turn over long enough - scenario - if you're clutch and the Position A and Position B switches were working correctly - would keep the starter turning until the Check Engine Light goes off, being the "Confirmation" the engine is firing and the Crankshaft Position Sensor - which is related to this too, is properly functioning because the engine Crank and the rotation speed the sensor is sending is rising/risen along with other sensors like Oil pressure and 02 - showing the engine has started - which then will turn off the Starter as a Cancel - or safety feature to prevent overcranking of the starter-clutch to the flywheel teeth and their meshing from being damaged..

What it forces you to do - IT forces you to turn the key all the way back to ACC or OFF and then re-engage the IGN to START turn of the key.

IGN OFF is the "RESET" it needs, relay drops - key tang resets, let the key rotate to START to start this process again.

That "block" prevents you from restarting the motor in error from it.
  • Don't worry here - I've push started my manuals at times when I've grown tired of headaches caused by that very same interlock lockout - and yes it does start and run. Just leave the key in the IGN and roll it -FORWARD- in neutral until you can safely pop the clutch in 1st Gear to help turn the engine over - just make sure you have a clear path to do this.
  • There is no glamor in the process but it does start the motor.
  • Ever try to Push start a Tesla? Hint: You can't "Charge the batteries by rolling it downhill"
Now if this lockout security function is damaged, or the ECM can't "Read" the My Key and be aware of it's presence - then yes, a battery may need to be changed in the key. But this too is not a guarantee of success - there's more even with the "Security/Theft" Lock-out system - it may need to relearn - so a trip to the dealership may be in order to solve this better than a series of posts back and forth ever will. They need to review the starter interlock and how your "My Key" is working together and you may need to replace the key with a new one that isn't damaged. That way, the system can be trained to learn and once the key codes established, you're on your way.

How often do you need to change your Key? Usually a lot longer in time than perhaps the vehicles owners own ownership. At least they're supposed to be that reliable - doesn't mean the "Bell curve" this was measured by, means your MY Key was near the top - if it's been dropped, kicked, thrown in the wash, left out in the rain - used as a means to clean off something found on the windshield - used in fashions where it's a little beyond the expected mannerisms that such a device was intended to be used for...well it could start acting:unsure: a little funny and give your grief in the process.

Usually changing the keys' Lithium Battery is all that is needed - but if the device has suffered some abuse in it's life - well this may be the reason for the glitch.

But then too, the Clutch start switches are more prone to fail from typical street and ordinary driving due to the nature of driving and the environment you're driving in is far more harsher on the physical than the digital realm. IT's why I chose this, because of my own experiences with my own car, it's easier to coast down a slope and pop the clutch to get it going then to fiddle with a key that you nearly torque off it's holder because the starter didn't crank long enough the first time and where my foot smashed the clutch pedal to the floor - damaging the throw of the Push - Here - To - Start featurette...
 

scotman

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#7
What he said!...
Ten years ago i left the key and remote to my Taurus wagon in the pocket of a jacket that went through the washing machine. The PATs module became indecisive about letting me start the car or sometimes even unlock the doors with that fob.
So, you might just have a demented key.
 


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