Dodge Dart Not Starting After Slave Cylinder Replacement

Michael Mobile Technician Utah Posted   Latest   Edited  
Case Study
Electrical
Programming
2014 Dodge Dart SXT 2.4L (B ED6) 6-spd (6F24) — 1C3CDFBB1ED883565
No Crank / No Start
Odometer Flashing

Last week we were called to a dealership to look at a 2014 Dodge that had a clutch slave cylinder replacement. The technician said that after the vehicle was assembled, there was no crank and no start. There was a code for comm with radio and no comm with CTM. Could that cause a no start? The battery had been disconnected. The instrument cluster was flashing the mileage. In some instances these vehicles have to relearn vehicle configuration and PROXI alignment after a battery replacement. We were concerned that this was preventing the vehicle from starting. The flashing cluster was the clue. diag​.​net/msg/m4oauyn8nf…

This vehicle had an aftermarket radio. Without the radio, the PROXI learn would not complete. I inquired to see if the radio could be removed from the vehicle order but the answer was no. Only accessories added on after the vehicle had been manufactured. We located a used radio that was the same model as came in the vehicle. Part of the PROXI alignment requires the radio to be on. The radio required a code to be turned on. No Chrysler dealer would help with the code. It was against the rules. Additionally, the code had to be for the original VIN and not the current VIN. This was obtained in the configuration data with the Witech Software. Finally an awesome friend was able to leverage the correct code. The technician working on the vehicle got the radio up and running. I swung by and did the restore vehicle configuration and PROXI learn. Still no start.

There was no immobilizer lamp. Scan data showed start position. By every reason the vehicle should have started. I started testing the starter circuit. At the upper relay I was getting voltage when the key was turned. There was a Green and Yellow wire that went to the starter from the relay. It looked like it was #10 wire so I could not imagine it getting cut or mangled enough to stop the flow of current. I looked down to see if there were any wires disconnected. They all seemed to be in place. Everyone had gone home so I did too. I contacted the service advisor and asked him to have the technician check the Green and Yellow wire, Grounds and the starter.

I went back again. The technician had checked the Green and Yellow wire. He removed the starter and bench tested. He checked all the wiring. I had him lift the vehicle with the ignition on. I connected my power probe (I know, I know but is all in how you use it.) I reached up to the starter solenoid and hit the power. Nothing happened. I was confused. I then stuck the probe against the case. No tone indicating continuity. I could see the ground strap connected to the left side of the transmission. 

diag​.​net/file/f4kg8r09z…

I went over to the strap and stuck the probe to it. I heard the tone. Back to the case and no tone. I reached up and grabbed the strap and it was loose. It was like the bolt was hand tight. It was against the case. Without grabbing it one could not tell that it was loose. I had the technician tighten the bolt. I reached up with the power probe and hit the juice. The vehicle fired right up.

diag​.​net/file/f122n2d04…

The rub is this. It is probable that if the ground were fixed the car would have started. In our process we started with what we could determine to be wrong visually and with the diagnostic tools. There was no code for "starter motor open circuit". I don't think there should always have to be a code. We can deduce things with common sense.

There were two paths we could have followed. #1 Battery disconnect causing information loss. There was evidence to support this theory. #2 Something happened in disassembly or assembly of the vehicle when removing and replacing transmission. There was evidence supporting this theory. In the end a huge weight is off my shoulders. The vehicle is fixed. The customer will be billed and the car will go away. Even if the ground issue would have allowed the vehicle to start, according to Matthew's article the flashing cluster indicates that something would not have worked after the repair. This would require having all modules online that the vehicle expected to see.

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Dean Owner
New York
Dean Default
 

Nice job Mike! Thanks for sharing this.

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Thanks Dean!

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Rick Technical Support Specialist
Missouri
Rick Default
 

Great Great article/report !! Kudos to you and your friend(s) for the perseverance and determination. to fix the vehicle. The feeling you got when you reached up for that ground strap is like achieving an Olympic gold medal. I've had my but kicked like that several times. Oh what a feeling when all your hard work reaches that: "we'll i'll be a SOB. Wouldn't it be great if time and the…

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Hi Rick, Well first job for this customer so it is going to be flat rate. Just the cost of the service call and the cost of the programming. It would be nice if I could charge for every trip over. They may have paid it but it would have been the last time we did work for them. Had they assigned a tech to me in the first place it may have gone smoother. I don't carry many tools and when it comes…

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Rick Technical Support Specialist
Missouri
Rick Default
 

Mike, You're Priceless ! That's why you haven't charged them your true value to the repair. You say you fixed it flat rate I say you did hourly. LOL. Do you think flat rate was the reason for the initial no-start? I think so other wise they would have had a tech at your beckon call during your time there. That's why I call myself, and always will a "MECHANIC" My definition of mechanic is "one…

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Richard Technician
Manitoba
Richard Default
 

Very good posting. I have run across this many times even before anyone has done any other repairs on the vehicle. The fault codes in other modules were most likely caused by the bad ground. Also be aware that about halfway up the ground cable there is a "pass-through" eyelet that attaches to the frame rail. This is often loose or badly corroded as well and can set a whole pile of codes. The…

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Richard, Good info. I was really surprised that it was the lonesome ground to the engine and transmission. Most US made vehicles have redundant grounds. Maybe not so big but enough to let the smoke out when the main one is gone. I suppose in Europe that is all they need. (ha, ha) -Mike

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Anthony Technical Support Specialist
Pennsylvania
Anthony Default
   

Hi Mike: The Peugeot 504 with diesels would automatically get cruise control, if the ground strap to the trans was left off, once the headlamps were turned on. The (now seized) throttle cable became the ground. Gomer Pyle came to mind. Surprise, Surprise, Surprise! Guido

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Randy Curriculum Developer
North Carolina
Randy Default
 

Sounds like 70's era GM floor shift cables....I heard 😉

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Saul Owner
Texas
Saul Default
 

Nice report Mike, its amazing that someone's mistake sometimes make us work more than we had to. By the way a no communication with the CTM will not make the car not start, I have a 2015 Dart with no communication with the CTM, no Bluetooth, no controls on steering wheel working, but car ran fine,

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Hi Saul, CTM was still dead after repairs. PROXI relearn went fine without it. So I agree it is not critical. The radio on the other hand held back PROXI learn. So the cluster most likely would still be lit up even though the vehicle started. After the ground was repaired I had to relearn the EPS. So there was definitely multiple issues to address.

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Randy Diagnostician
California
Randy Default
 

good diag

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Gary Technical Support Specialist
New York
Gary Default
 

"Michael I have heard of the PROXI alignment before but have never preformed one. can you explain what it is, what it is used for, can a after market scan tool preform it or is it limited to the WItech?

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Hi Gary, The article that Matthew wrote above explains it fairly well but I will do my best. The Chrysler CAN network is made up of multiple modules. There is a gateway that talks to all of them and gets mad when someone does not answer. So if one removes the radio, the gateway protests. When the battery is removed or there is a glitch, lights come on the dash and the gateway gets real mad…

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Randy Diagnostician
California
Randy Default
 

good point

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Gary Technical Support Specialist
New York
Gary Default
 

Michael thanks for the reply, I'll check my Snap On to see if it there. In the case of battery replacement how long would the cables need to be disconnected to lose the PROXI. Would some kind of battery memory saver be the rule of thumb more than ever on 2014 and up Chryslers?

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Gary, I worked for a company that supplied memory savers to many chain stores. It would save the memory by way of the OBD2 port. There are several models this is not good to do with. I hear that BMW puts a diode in circuit so it does no good. Subaru does not respond well to this method. We have heard of anything from blown fuses to blown ECUs. I would suggest a method that connects to the…

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