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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, I really could use your expertise. Really can't afford to take my truck to the shop right now.

I have a 2002 4.7 Quad Cab.

Recently, it started getting hard to crank, then one day it just completely died while driving.

I pulled the gas tank, replaced the fuel pump. After a bit, it started, drove it around the block. Parked it. When I actually went somewhere, it died on the interstate about 3 miles from house. Same thing, just died suddenly. Cranking just sounds like its getting no gas.

Had it towed back, tried swapping relays with the identical one beside it in the fuse box under hood (a/c I think) tried cranking. Nothing. A few hours later, I tried bleeding the valve on the fuel rail, but nothing came out except gas that I could tell.

Tried cranking, and it ran, idled for about 10 minutes which was a great improvement ( wouldn't idle before ), then died. Won't start.

I noticed after I tried cranking, it was making a "relay ticking" type sound. I put my finger on all the relays and the one called Engine relay seemed to feel strongest, but I pull it out and something is still ticking underneath, touching the other relays, the ticking vibration is strongest under the engine relay, but id doesn't seem to be coming from the relay itself, although pulling out the engine relay , the sound got much quieter.

I've made a video and uploaded to my google drive if you want to see/hear it, hope that helps someone diagnose or at least narrow down the problem . I really can't afford to take this to a shop right now.

Truck Ticking Sound.mp4
 

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I believe that "ENG" relay is aka the ASD (automatic shut down) relay & voltage goes through that relay to your coil & also your injectors.

Prior to replacing your fuel pump, I would have been interested to know if you were getting pressure at your fuel rails. And now that you have changed the pump, I'd still be interseted. A pressure gauge for checking that doesn't cost a lot, but maybe you could rent one at a parts store. Basically you put a deposit down & get it back at return so it doesn't cost you anything unless you break it. I'm not sure if they rent those though.

I think the next thing you need to determine (when it cranks but doesn't start) is whether or not you are getting voltage at the spark plugs. They make these cheap but handy little devices for checking that that you can buy at most parts stores.

ON EDIT: My bad, everything I typed from here on pretty much would not apply to your 4.7 with its coil over plug set up.

My own personal, but admittedly limited, experience is that a PCM can cause an intermittent crank but no start condition; however mine is a 5.9 Dak. I've read a lot of discussions related to this on message boards, & it does appear that having a Dakota PCM fail in such a manner is not a rarity.
 

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Recently, it started getting hard to crank, then one day it just completely died while driving.
Coming back to this to make an edit to my first reply, I reread your OP & caught this. Do you mean it was/is cranking slow or do you mean it takes/took a lot of cranking to get it to go?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I believe that "ENG" relay is aka the ASD (automatic shut down) relay & voltage goes through that relay to your coil & also your injectors.

Prior to replacing your fuel pump, I would have been interested to know if you were getting pressure at your fuel rails. And now that you have changed the pump, I'd still be interseted. A pressure gauge for checking that doesn't cost a lot, but maybe you could rent one at a parts store. Basically you put a deposit down & get it back at return so it doesn't cost you anything unless you break it. I'm not sure if they rent those though.

I think the next thing you need to determine (when it cranks but doesn't start) is whether or not you are getting voltage at the spark plugs. They make these cheap but handy little devices for checking that that you can buy at most parts stores.

If you are not getting spark at the plugs, I'd next check to see if you are getting current to the distributor cap from the coil (you can use that same testing device to determine that). If you are, even though this sounds like an intermittent problem, I'd replace the distributor cap & rotor (& if the cam pos sensor is located under there on that engine, that as well).

If you are not, I'd then take a multi meter & check for voltage going to the coil. I BELIEVE this will be the green with red stripe wire. You will need to probe this wire with a volt meter. After turning the key to run you should get battery voltage here for about 2 seconds & then the ASD relay will deengergize until you crank the engine. So you will need an assistant or you will need to have your volt meter located where you can see it when you turn the key on.

If you don't get volts here, the next step would be to swap out the ASD relay with a known good one. (Also, keep in mind that your ASD relay is controlled by your PCM.)

If you are getting volts here, next check for a trigger signal to your coil. I BELIEVE that will be the black wire with white stripe. You will need an inexpensive test tight (available at auto parts stores). Probe the wire with the test light & crank engine; if you are getting a trigger signal to the coil the light will flash; if you are not getting a trigger signal then test (& replace if necessary) your crank & camshaft position sensors. If those two sensors are known to be good I believe you are looking at a fault in your PCM. It can be sent or taken for diagnosis & repair if necessary.

My own personal experience is that a PCM can cause this intermittent crank but no start condition & the order of checks that I just recited is the chain I went through before sending my PCM out for repair due to a similar intermittent condition. I've read a lot of discussions related to this on message boards, & it does appear that having a Dakota PCM fail in such a manner is not a rarity.

All good points.

Here is something I've noticed.

  • It's sat over night. I can go out there and crank it right now. It will idle for several minutes I haven't timed it, probably 5 minutes. Seems about the same amount of time, every time.
  • Then it will die after idling a few minutes.
  • Then it will make that ticking sound under the relay.
  • Then it will not crank at all, until it sits for a while.

It almost seems like some purposeful lockout. Like a few minutes after it starts, something is purposefully killing the circuit, and it won't start again until a timeout period.

I have swapped the relay with the one beside it, which has all the same #s on it, and it didn't change anything.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Coming back to this to make an edit to my first reply, I reread your OP & caught this. Do you mean it was/is cranking slow or do you mean it takes/took a lot of cranking to get it to go?
I meant that at times it would turn over a lot before cranking.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It has been sitting over night. I just cranked it, no problem. I looked at the clock and it was 3:26, when it died, it was 3:32, so about 5 - 6 minutes before dying right on cue. Not it will just turn over. It's not making the ticking sound this time under the fuse box
 

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All good points.

Here is something I've noticed.

  • It's sat over night. I can go out there and crank it right now. It will idle for several minutes I haven't timed it, probably 5 minutes. Seems about the same amount of time, every time.
  • Then it will die after idling a few minutes.
  • Then it will make that ticking sound under the relay.
  • Then it will not crank at all, until it sits for a while.

It almost seems like some purposeful lockout. Like a few minutes after it starts, something is purposefully killing the circuit, and it won't start again until a timeout period.

I have swapped the relay with the one beside it, which has all the same #s on it, and it didn't change anything.
Not cranking at all:
Looking at a schematic, I see 3 fuses before the starter solenoid (one of them which I don't know where it is located, one located in the panel in the cab, and one located in the under the hood electrical box); a starter relay; on the 4.7 there is "joint connector 3"; and then there are some transmission switches, modules & solenoids tied in with the starter relay that could potentially keep voltage from the starter solenoid.

Getting back to those modules/switches/solenoids, apparently they vary depending upon whether this is a auto, manual & 4wd. Which is yours?

I am a novice (at best) at reading prints, but I cannot see where a no-crank-condition could be related to a crank-but-won't-start-condition. This kind of makes me wonder if you have two separate things going on here?
 

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It has been sitting over night. I just cranked it, no problem. I looked at the clock and it was 3:26, when it died, it was 3:32, so about 5 - 6 minutes before dying right on cue. Not it will just turn over. It's not making the ticking sound this time under the fuse box
ON EDIT: Sorry, this didn't apply as when I typed it I wasn't aware that the 4.7 was coil over plug.
 

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I meant that at times it would turn over a lot before cranking.
We are not totally on the same semantical page here.
By cranking, I mean that the starter is engaging/turning the engine over (even though it may not be starting).
I assume that you are saying that sometimes it will crank (engage the starter) quite a bit before the engine starts?

If that's the case, going back to your now-it-won't-even-crank (engage the starter) condition, I am wondering if the excessive cranking (starter usage) is heating something up in the starting circuit & temporarily breaking the circuit somewhere?
 

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Also keep this in mind for a "cranks (starter engages)-but-engine--won't-start-condition":
the PCM MUST get a valid signal from the camshaft AND crankshaft position sensors or it will not send a trigger signal to the coil (and from what I have read on another site, if the PCM doesn't get both of these signals I am also getting the impression that it may not energize the ASD relay, meaning you wouldn't get voltage at your coil or your injectors).

What is the mileage on this truck?
On another site I have read of the signal (primarily) from the crankshaft sensor being present but degraded. I don't know, but possibly making for an intermittent condition.

ON EDIT:
My apologies:
I missed the memo re that the 4.7 has a coil over plug set up.
Making a whole lot of what I previously typed null & void.

However, it remains that "the PCM controls the operation of the coils, firing each one in sequence."
And I am relatively positive that what I typed about the crank & camshaft position sensors & the ASD relay is still relevant on the 4.7.

As far as a "purposeful lockout," I am not saying there is not one, but I cannot find anything related to that (other than the ASD relay), so I'd think that if that is the case, it must be an integral part of the PCM.

And I truly think that when your truck is in the mode where you hit the key & nothing at all happens (won't even turn over), this is NOT related to the issue that is shutting your engine down after it has been running for 4 or 5 minutes. (I've had starter solenoids start acting up on me, & sometimes it seems as if there is no rhyme or reason to when they decide to work & not work. Usually just hitting the key enough times would get them to go. For me, anyway.)
 

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My apologies:
I missed the memo re the 4.7 has a coil over plug set up.
Making a whole lot of what I previously typed null & void.

However, it remains that "the PCM controls the operation of the coils, firing each one in sequence."
And I am relatively positive that what I typed about the crank & camshaft position sensors & the ASD relay is still relevant on the 4.7.

As far as a "purposeful lockout," I am not saying there is not one, but I cannot find anything related to that (other than the ASD relay), so I'd think that if that is the case, it must be an integral part of the PCM.

And I truly think that when your truck is in the mode where you hit the key & nothing at all happens (won't even turn over), this is NOT related to the issue that is shutting your engine down after it has been running for 4 or 5 minutes. (I've had starter solenoids start acting up on me, & sometimes it seems as if there is no rhyme or reason to when they decide to work & not work. Usually just hitting the key enough times would get them to go. For me, anyway.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
My truck never has the issue where it won't turnover. It turns over fine, unless you just run the battery down trying to start it.

Summary:

  • If it's been shut down for a while. ( not sure how long ) , it cranks, runs normally.
  • After about 5 minutes, something kills the engine.
  • If you try to start it, it will turn over but will not start.
  • Usually there is a ticking sound under the fuse box after this
  • After an unknown period of time, you can start it again.

Doing some googling, other's have mentioned the pcm

I really appreciate your help. I'm having it towed today so someone can look at it. My troubleshooting skills at this point are probably not adequate and I'm fed up.
 

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Sorry, didn't mean to insult you or anything.
The term "cranking" is usually interpreted to mean turning the engine over with the starter (even if the engine doesn't start & run).
(Which would be a "crank-but-no-start-condition.")
 

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And here

What to Do For a Clicking Noise in a Fuse Box

is a real neat little tutorial I found to be quite educational for myself.
Basically it identifies the function of each leg of the relay & how you can take a multimeter & diagnose where the problem making the relay click repetitively is coming from. I liked it so much I copied it for myself. I noted with interest that it states that earlier model Dodge pickups had an issue with the a PCB in the PCM cracking & making the ASD relay click.

It does sound like the PCM may be the root of your problem. There are facilities you can send your PCM to who will bench check it & repair or replace & their prices are not way crazy. I sent mine out in '18 & had it repaired.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
No you didn't insult me. You are way more knowledgeable than I am, sorry I didn't use the right verbage. I appreciate you taking time to help!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I just hooked up a code reader,

p0841 transmission fluid pressure sensor switch A circuit range performance.
p0871 transmission fluid pressure sensor switch C circuit range performance.
p0340 Camshaft position sensor A circuit (Bank 1 or single sensor )
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Now, I could have bad sensors... in two completely unrelated parts of the car.

Or something reading sensors could be bad, ( like a computer )

Or, I could have a bad computer, and a bad sensor, or sensors.

I'm still waiting for these jackasses to come get it and tow it and work on it. But if I knew for a fact it's the computer, I'd cancel the tow. I just don't want to pay for a rebuilt computer if it's not the computer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
This is exactly what it's doing.

The PCM uses the Camshaft Position Sensor to tell it when the Crankshaft Sensor signal is in sync with cylinder number 1 and each cylinder thereafter, and it is also used for fuel injector synchronization / start of injection. If the Camshaft Position Sensor signal is not present at engine start up, the engine will crank but won’t start. If the signal goes missing after the engine starts, the engine will continue to stay running but once it is shut off, it will not restart. In all cases, it will set code P0340.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
So I'm assuming its more likely that it's the PCM, not just the Camshaft position sensor.
 
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