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1988 Ranger 2.3 won't start with key


aeaton9021

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My 1988 Ranger 2.3l suddenly would not start with the key. I am able to jump the solenoid, and it starts every time that way. I have replaced the neutral safety switch, the starter solenoid, the battery and the ignition switch. I still have to jump the starter solenoid to start the truck. I have even tired bringing the wheels to center and then trying to start it, nope. I have also checked the fuses and all wires and connections. All good there. What is wrong with this truck? This is the first major problem I have had out of it in 12 years.
 


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Shran

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First and second gen trucks are notorious for bad ignition switches... they kind of come apart where the metal part is crimped onto the plastic part. Could also be the rod in the column that activates the switch... try pulling the switch off and pushing the inside part as far as you can and see if it does anything. I know you have replaced the switch but even new switches are of the same crappy design.

If not my second guess is that your starter solenoid is bad out of the box. I have had this happen a bunch of times, especially cheap ones. I went through like 4 or 5 of them, dead right out of the box from O'Reilly before I got one of another brand that finally worked.

A third possibility, and I'm assuming you have a manual transmission, is that the clutch switch that is kind of attached to the pedal push rod has failed. Is that the neutral safety switch you're talking about or do you have an automatic?
 

aeaton9021

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I went back to parts store and got a different starter solenoid and same result. Yes, the truck is a standard and I am referring to that neutral safety switch. I have replaced the ignition switch to rule it out. I will have to try your suggestions.
 

rusty ol ranger

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All your "little wires" on the solenoid are connected well?
 

Ramcharger90

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I was gonna say check that trigger wire the red one on the small post on the solenoid.
 


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