Clutch activated starter problem

89 Toyota P/U

Standard Transmission, Clutch-activated starter–Clutch must be in for vehicle to start. Clutch near end of life with high engagement point. Ignition/door key recently re-keyed. Twice in last two weeks, on each occasion on an over 80 degree day, the vehicle has failed to start with clutch depressed to floor. The vehicle was warm, but not overheated on each occasion. After several hours the vehicle starts normally.

Anybody ever seen this? Probably will replace switch, but would like input first. My mechanic is very good, but this is a new one to him. Only replaced five of these switches in 20 years.

Is the cost of the switch very high? can you afford to buy one and be wrong? I would think you could. On the other hand the switches do adjust or you could jump the switch for a period of time and see if your diagnosis is correct.

Sorry for any blank replies. Technical problem. I’ll be paying for labor, so I can’t afford trial and error at the moment. Putting a jumper around the switch is a good idea. What’s puzzling is why it happened the day after an unrelated repair and oil change and the intermittent nature of the problem. The failures were ten days apart and when the car cooled normal function resumed.

Are you sure it is the switch? These rarely go bad. I had a problem with my '90 truck and the starter solenoid, where I could heard the big click of the solenoid working, but the starter failed to kick in. This is a common failure of the starters used in these trucks. Until I replaced the starter, I was pumping the clutch pedal, using the starter interrupt switch your worried about, to engage and disengage the solenoid until it found a good spot, and the truck would start. I never had to replace this switch.

Certainly you can and should test the switch by jumpering around it. Can you stick your head under the dash and unplug it to put the jumper wire into the “sockets” where it plugs in? Your mechanic may not want to do that for you due to his liability if someone who didn’t know about “missing” switch started it in gear.

Nash pioneered the clutch safety switch in the 1930s by putting their starter switch itself UNDER the clutch pedal. Push it to the floor, and just push a little harder to engage the switch.

Thanks for all the information. Please note that I have very limited ‘car sense!’ With that disclaimer, could the solenoid begin to fail intermittently, especially after the engine reaches peak temperature?