A friend just bought a 96 Buick Regal. Afterward he drove it to my place from the DMV to show me. Then it wouldn’t start when he left for home. Turn the key to Start, and nothing, no clicks, nada. Then after a few more tries it started right up, no problem. This behavior continued the next day, which is today. I went to his place and putzed around to get familiar. I ended up applying 12 volts to the solenoid wire at the starter with the key in the Run position. Engine cranked, started and died, a few times. OK, so the starter is good, the battery is good. I tried starting in neutral instead of park. No difference. I had my friend do the actual starting with the key. Then I tried starting the engine with the key. I found that when I jiggled the key in various ways, the engine started damn near consistently after about 7 or 8 tries… until it didn’t. The usual jiggle didn’t work… until it did again. At this point, the ignition switch seems like a likely suspect. But the fault might be in what is called the “theft deterrent relay” and the “theft deterent module” both of which can be seen in the diagram linked below, and I might be imagining that the jiggling completes the critical circuits to start the engine. Try as a might, I could not find these two components on short notice, using the internet and my own experience, limited as it is. Any thoughts, suggestions?
PS - My 87 Dakota auto transmission is running fine.