Ignition switch failed?

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nik1
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Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Sat Aug 04, 2018 1:02 pm

Hey guys,

My capri is failing to start. Red ignition light comes on when turning the key, but no engine turning or ticking. It happened once straight after driving it and parking, and now again on my drive so the battery should be fine (all other electrics work).

Do I need to replace the ignition switch? Or ignition coil?

ford capri mk2 ghia 2lt

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby Peter-S » Sat Aug 04, 2018 5:01 pm

I seem to recall that when I had a MkII 30 odd years ago there was a starter solenoid button under the bonnet close to the starter motor. Does yours have one? See if it spins the engine over if its there. If it does it suggests the fault might be in the switch.
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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby Paul G » Sat Aug 04, 2018 10:13 pm

Check the small wire that goes down to the starter motor - the terminals may be loose, corroded or even have fallen off if it's not starting. This is the wire that current comes from the ignition to energise the solenoid to switch and operate the starter.

This is quite a common problem and gives the symptoms you describe. Also check battery terminals and earths are OK.

Is the car being a Ghia an automatic?

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:03 pm

I've removed the ignition switch and tried to hotwire it. I get electricity (wiper, lights work) when connecting the first two pins together, but no other combination starts the motor [see picture below] That means the ignition switch is not the problem? So it must be the ignition coil? Stupid question: ignition coil = starter motor? Google didn't help much with that.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1WJGP1U ... sp=sharing

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby Paul G » Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:21 pm

In my reply I meant to check the wiring connections ON the starter motor. not at the back of the ignition switch. If you've got ignition lights but nothing from the starter I bet this is where the problem will lie. It will either be a bad connection or a break in the wire down to the starter.

As far as the coil being related to this - well you could remove the coil from a car and it will still crank over - it's nothing to do with this problem.

The reason I asked if the car being a Ghia is an automatic is that it could be related to the starter inhibitor relay but these are not fitted to manuals.

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Wed Aug 08, 2018 5:58 pm

Paul G wrote:In my reply I meant to check the wiring connections ON the starter motor. not at the back of the ignition switch. If you've got ignition lights but nothing from the starter I bet this is where the problem will lie. It will either be a bad connection or a break in the wire down to the starter.

As far as the coil being related to this - well you could remove the coil from a car and it will still crank over - it's nothing to do with this problem.

The reason I asked if the car being a Ghia is an automatic is that it could be related to the starter inhibitor relay but these are not fitted to manuals.


Thanks for checking up on this. It's a 5 speed manual. I tried a different ignition coil and like you said, it's not that as it still doesn't even crank. This is a picture of my starter motor. https://drive.google.com/file/d/16Dkfjz ... sp=sharing

I have a resistance meter I can use to check the state of the wires, but I'm not sure how to proceed. Should check the wires from the ignition switch to the starter motor, and which ones? I can undo the connections and give them a bit of a clean, but if that doesn't work would I need a new starter motor? Are they prone to going bust like this?

Also I found this wire loose, and the bolt loose as well (both circled on the picture). Is that where it connects to?
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1dtEIa ... WaGIX5WzOz

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby Paul G » Wed Aug 08, 2018 6:37 pm

nik1 wrote:
Paul G wrote:In my reply I meant to check the wiring connections ON the starter motor. not at the back of the ignition switch. If you've got ignition lights but nothing from the starter I bet this is where the problem will lie. It will either be a bad connection or a break in the wire down to the starter.

As far as the coil being related to this - well you could remove the coil from a car and it will still crank over - it's nothing to do with this problem.

The reason I asked if the car being a Ghia is an automatic is that it could be related to the starter inhibitor relay but these are not fitted to manuals.


. This is a picture of my starter motor. https://drive.google.com/file/d/16Dkfjz ... sp=sharing

I have a resistance meter I can use to check the state of the wires, but I'm not sure how to proceed. Should check the wires from the ignition switch to the starter motor, and which ones? I can undo the connections and give them a bit of a clean, but if that doesn't work would I need a new starter motor? Are they prone to going bust like this?

Also I found this wire loose, and the bolt loose as well (both circled on the picture). Is that where it connects to?
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1dtEIa ... WaGIX5WzOz


The wire that operates the starter is the flat bladed one. Firstly pull it off and give the terminal a good clean with a bit of fine sandpaper and check that the wire end and terminal connector seem to be clean and tightly fitting.

If that doesn't work, get a helper and wiggle the wire about whist the helper tries the starter. Obviously make sure the car is in neutral with the brake on! If still no luck connect a VOLTMETER to the terminal and get your helper to turn the key again to the start position. You should get about 12V while the key is in the start position.

Try this and report back.

By the way, the wire in the alternator picture is just an old radio suppressor and I wouldn't worry about that for now, it's not related to the starting problem.

Paul.

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Wed Aug 08, 2018 6:58 pm

Paul G wrote:
The wire that operates the starter is the flat bladed one. Firstly pull it off and give the terminal a good clean with a bit of fine sandpaper and check that the wire end and terminal connector seem to be clean and tightly fitting.

If that doesn't work, get a helper and wiggle the wire about whist the helper tries the starter. Obviously make sure the car is in neutral with the brake on! If still no luck connect a VOLTMETER to the terminal and get your helper to turn the key again to the start position. You should get about 12V while the key is in the start position.

Try this and report back.

By the way, the wire in the alternator picture is just an old radio suppressor and I wouldn't worry about that for now, it's not related to the starting problem.

Paul.


Thanks a lot Paul! I'll try that. Just done a bit of reading about this and I have a question. If the ignition switch wire is triggering the solenoid in the starter motor properly, there should be a constant clicking sound as you hold the ignition key turned to start the car, correct? When I hold the key turned I just get a single click.

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby Paul G » Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:14 pm

Ah - Nik, you didn't say that you were getting a single click when the key is turned. If that is the case get a helper to hold the key in the start position whilst you tap the soleinoid (the smaller box on top of the starter) with a hammer and see if it starts.

If it starts it means the soleinoid is sticking but before completely condemming it I just suggest that you check you battery terminals are clean and tight and that the earth wires running from the - terminal are clean and grounding properly, both on the engine block and the inner wing by the strut top where the smaller wire goes to.

If it still does it after this it points to the soleinoid having failed and the only realistic way round it it to fit a replacement starter.

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby caprikid61 » Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:23 am

There is not a toggle swich hidden anywhere ? Sounds daft but I found one hidden in my laser someone must have been using it as an antitheft device in the past.

When the swich is on everything is fine but the swich is faulty so sometimes I was having exactly the same problem as you I could not get anything when turning the key so I removed the swich and joined the wires up never had anymore problems ever since .

nik1
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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:54 am

Paul G wrote:Ah - Nik, you didn't say that you were getting a single click when the key is turned. If that is the case get a helper to hold the key in the start position whilst you tap the soleinoid (the smaller box on top of the starter) with a hammer and see if it starts.

If it starts it means the soleinoid is sticking but before completely condemming it I just suggest that you check you battery terminals are clean and tight and that the earth wires running from the - terminal are clean and grounding properly, both on the engine block and the inner wing by the strut top where the smaller wire goes to.

If it still does it after this it points to the soleinoid having failed and the only realistic way round it it to fit a replacement starter.


I gave the starter a few taps and now it starts. Not smoothly but I've managed to start it up a dozen times this morning. Should I buy a new starter motor soon, or will this last months/year? And what starter motor should I get? Will any pinto starter motor work?
The ones on burton power don't seem different to what I can find on eBay?
http://www.burtonpower.com/edge-gear-re ... 1-4kw.html
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Ford-Pinto-2 ... SwVb5bUlYu

I'll attach pictures of mine if this helps:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1q3_qJ- ... sp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1g2P_CJ ... sp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1II7DF ... INf79EAmsD

I don't see anything resembling a toggle switch caprikid61 =/

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby Paul G » Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:17 pm

Hi Nik

The Burton reduction gear starter is nice but it's probably a bit of an unneccessary luxury. You best bet would to phone Martin at Caprigear (he's a Capri specialist supplier) on Monday and take his advice, he may have reconditioned ones or good, tested used ones. His number is 01507 343148.

Regards fitting the new one just disconnect the battery - negative terminal then remove the electrical connections from the starter followed by undoing the bolts that attach the starter to the gearbox bellhousing. Pull the old unit out (quite heavy!) then refit the new one in the reverse order.

Hope this helps.

Paul.

nik1
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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Mon Aug 13, 2018 4:45 pm

Paul G wrote:Hi Nik

The Burton reduction gear starter is nice but it's probably a bit of an unneccessary luxury. You best bet would to phone Martin at Caprigear (he's a Capri specialist supplier) on Monday and take his advice, he may have reconditioned ones or good, tested used ones. His number is 01507 343148.

Regards fitting the new one just disconnect the battery - negative terminal then remove the electrical connections from the starter followed by undoing the bolts that attach the starter to the gearbox bellhousing. Pull the old unit out (quite heavy!) then refit the new one in the reverse order.

Hope this helps.

Paul.


Caprigear didn't have the starter but went out of their way to find the right one on eBay. It seems correct, so I've purchased it and will fit it this weekend. Amazing.

Thanks a lot for your help Paul. Really.

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Thu Aug 16, 2018 2:17 pm

So fitting the new starter motor went well. It seems to start better now (before it barely turned or clicked). BUT it's acting strange. The engine was warmed up (temp gauge above half way) first stop down the road and it had trouble staying on idle and stalled. Then wouldn't turn back on (no clicking). Waiting a few moments and it started again. Kept the revs high with the gas pedal and then seemed fine and normal for a 30 minute drive, idling like normal and all. Then I come back to my drive, stop, switch off the ignition (engine stops roughly, turns a few times before it stops, it's been doing that lately maybe from the heat) and with the key in my hand the electrics stay ON, the red ignition light is ON and what seems to be the starter motor is audibly turning nonstop. I put the key back in to turn it ON and OFF but nothing. Everything stops as normal after a few minutes. Any ideas?

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby Paul G » Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:04 pm

Are you absolutely sure that you got the wires on the starter on the corrcet terminals? If you have one of the wires would activate the starter.

Check the main engine earth strap. This bolts on to the engine block below the distributor and fuel pump and runs all the way up to the - negative terminal on the battery. Check the wire through its entire length looking for breaks or bulges in it which would indicate internal corrosion and breaking up. If you really want to eliminate this then try driving the car with a good jump lead connected betweeen the engine block and the - negative terminal. I've experienced the exact symptoms you've had before and it was this earth wire.

Finally re-check anything you did to the ignition box and is it still wired as it was and securely attached to the ignition switch/lock.

If it does the starter running on thing again then disconnect the negative battery terminal a bit quick otherwise you may burn out the new starter or worse.

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Thu Aug 16, 2018 6:07 pm

Yeah the terminals on the starter are fine. No way to get those wrong (flat pin, big bolt and small push on bolt connection.) Engine earth strap seems fine. It's having an awful time idling, it basically can't. The temp gauge is half way and even with full choke out it stalls when I lift my foot off the gas. By the sound of the engine and rumble, it feels as if the spark plugs aren't getting enough voltage and aren't igniting anything. I could trouplw shoot them, but them and the leads are 1 year old. I know the ignition coil isn't ballisted so I've read that gives the plugs a weaker spark... But this is almost a new problem all together.

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby Paul G » Thu Aug 16, 2018 6:38 pm

Do you have a voltmeter? Could you measure the voltage at the + positive terminal on the coil? Do this with ignition on but not starting the car.

Did you knock any small hoses off from under the manifold while changing the starter?

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Sat Aug 18, 2018 12:19 pm

Paul G wrote:Do you have a voltmeter? Could you measure the voltage at the + positive terminal on the coil? Do this with ignition on but not starting the car.

Did you knock any small hoses off from under the manifold while changing the starter?


The battery is 12.4V so it's good. On the ignition coil the voltage is 0 -ve to +ve. The resistance is 1 Ohm... I thought it should be 3 if not ballasted and 1.5 Ohm if ballasted. This is so strange. Sometimes the starter motor struggles a bit, but does work every time. And when the car is warm and driven it idles fine and starts fine. Just when cold even the choke can't make it sit on idle.

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby nik1 » Sat Aug 18, 2018 12:25 pm

I took out the spark plugs and they have some carbon fouling but the tips of the electrodes are a bit cleaner and metallic looking. From connector to center electrode the resistance is 5.5kOhm which is a bit too high isn't it? I've read for new ones it should be less than 4k. Should I replace them, could that be the issue?

edit: another thing to add which may help, when the car is dead cold and isn't idling, pulling the choke "seems" to make it worst and lower the revs if I TRY to keep my foot steady on the gas. Then it warms up and the choke works.. a little.

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Re: Ignition switch failed?

Postby Paul G » Sat Aug 18, 2018 2:54 pm

nik1 wrote:I took out the spark plugs and they have some carbon fouling but the tips of the electrodes are a bit cleaner and metallic looking. From connector to center electrode the resistance is 5.5kOhm which is a bit too high isn't it? I've read for new ones it should be less than 4k. Should I replace them, could that be the issue?

edit: another thing to add which may help, when the car is dead cold and isn't idling, pulling the choke "seems" to make it worst and lower the revs if I TRY to keep my foot steady on the gas. Then it warms up and the choke works.. a little.


Modern plugs are of a higher resistance than the older ones that the book may quote.

Getting back to your problems what are we trying to fix? Is it the ignition staying on and the starter running after you've switched off the car, whether the right coil is fitted or the bad running of the car? I'm getting lost myself my friend!

With the car's running. before mucking about with which plug or the choke etc it is important that you check the points are in good condition, gapped properly and preferably set to 50 degrees on a dwell meter followed by setting the ignition timing with a strobe light to 8 degrees BTDC. See how it runs with this done.

If it's still playing up could I suggest politely that you find a local mechanic who knows older cars to have a look at it.

The running with the keys out worries me and I would suggest you disconnect the negative battery terminal when the car isn't in use until the mechanic has checked it.