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No Crank, No Start

I may have roasted my NSS, and Im wondering how to test to see if its whats causing my No Crank / No Start.
2003 Kia Rio 1.6L Automatic

Turn the ignition switch on so the dash lights come on, step on the brake pedal and shift the transmission into neutral, and then try starting the engine.

If the engine starts, the problem is with the park/neutral/transmission range switch.


That test would work even if the conductors may be damaged inside and not completing the circuit when in Park and Neutral?


If you did that simple test, you might find out?

The most common test for your problem.


I did give that a try and it wont turn over in Park or Neutral.

That switch is usually just a 2-pin affair. The two pins are either connected or not connected, depending on the gear shift lever. A shop tech would remove the switch’s connector, then connect an ohm meter to the two switch pins. The connection state (on vs off) – if the switch is working – should be the same in N and P D, and the other state in all the other gear selection positions.

And no click heard when the hood is up?

Did you mean N and P, or no?
Its actually got 10 pins on it. 4 larger ones and 6 smaller.
You mentioned that there is plenty of voltage on the terminals and that it might be a faulty starter motor. Any other ways I might be able to test the starter, without pulling it necessarily. Much appreciated.

Here’s the switch George.

Does this look like a two pin affair?


Correct, no click when I turn key from Acc to Crank

Yes, I’ll correct that above. You are right, it is P and N.

You’ve probably found the range selector switch. From what I can tell here’s how that switch is configured

pin 9 connects to

pin 2 in R
1 in P
7 in N
8 in 2
3 in 1
4 in D

I’m not sure whether that is the neutral safety switch or not. There are two other switches I see, one is called a mode switch and is 2 pins, and the other is called a shift interlock, 4 pins. I’m guessing the shift interlock is what prevents shifting out of D unless the brake pedal is pressed. The mode switch, not sure what that does. The neutral safety switch is PN 0K30B21444 if that’s any help. I’m guessing the neutral safety switch is the one pinned-out above, and is located in the engine compartment. The mode switch, whatever that does, seems to be in the driver’s console area, passenger compartment.

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Did you do anything in particular to “roast” it, or do just mean you think it failed from old age?

OP described in another post that the starter was bridged from B to S to try to get it to crank, and that’s when a suspected short circuit occurred. After which it wouldn’t crank no matter what with the key in start.

Oh yeah…I don’t see how that would hurt the NSS, but I don’t have a wiring diagram.

Concur @insightful, seems more likely if something got damaged by bridging S to B directly at the starter motor, and a short circuit occurred in the process, it would be a fuse or the starter motor itself was damaged.

Well its not the starter. I ordered a remanufactured one, installed it and the same conditions persist. I took the original (with solenoid attached) down to the parts store had it tested, and it works.
Im not hearing any click at the starter when I turn to crank. Im wondering if Ive simply blown a fuse somewhere, while using the jumper incorrectly in the relay cavities causing a spark. I included the diagram of the starting and charging system and was wondering if anyone had suggestions as to what might be keeping this car from starting. The other thread relating to this diagnosis: HELP- Fried PCM?

The purple wire is the “s” connection to the starter, and the red wire is the “b” connection. You said you measured 12 volts on the “b”, and 10.5 volts on the “s” with the key in start, that was another of your posts, right? And it didn’t crank. And you measured between the starter terminal and the starter case, right? Suggest to double check those measurements, b/c that should be enough to crank the engine. Both the “b” and “s” have to meet those voltages simultaneously.

If the voltages still are what you first measured, the 10.5 volts is a little on the low side, but still within spec for the motor I’d guess. But you should still figure out why there’s a 1.5 volt drop between the battery and the “s” terminal. Maybe the little starter relay at the top has corroded contacts, or there’s a poor connection somewhere between that relay and the “s” terminal. Maybe the fusible link is the problem. One idea, run a thick test wire replacing the purple wire as a test to see if that makes a difference. In any event, somehow you are losing 1.5 volts between the battery and “s”, so you need to figure out why. The “s” current is typically around 15 amps, so 1/10 of an ohm in that path would produce a 1.5 volt drop. You have to have good tight un-corroded connection everywhere in that path. Other things that could cause a no crank with the voltages you report

  • Maybe your volt meter is faulty – seems unlikely b/c the “b” measurement you got seems correct

  • Maybe the starter isn’t making good electrical contact with the engine

  • Maybe the engine isn’t soundly grounded to the chassis . Neither of these last two seems likely if you measured the voltages above between the terminal and the starter case. Ground problems would show up automatically when measuring to the starter case.

  • hmmm… what else … Maybe the starter relay (the small one at the top) , the coil on that isn’t being properly powered so you don’t get a good forceful connection. That could be caused by a bad transmission or clutch safety switch or that relay with the yellow wire running to it. This again seems unlikely. If it is the problem it will show up when you do the voltage drop testing.

  • something may be interfering with the crankshaft turning, but that should still produce a click at the starter, again unlikely.

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The low battery indicator on my meter has actually been blinking for a while. I switched out the battery since I took the original readings off the starter and Im now getting completely different results. The only other change since I took the original readings was swapping out the original starter for a rebuilt one then putting the original back in. All in all, this is what Im reading now:
The battery is fully charged with 12.45V. At the starter relay, I have a full 12.45V of constant power on the B, and roughly 10.5V on the S; but only when gear selector is in P and N, the reverse lights also come on when in R which suggests that the Park/Neutral Safety Switch is working. Ive tested the starter relay and its working. At the starter, I am getting the full 12.45V on the B, -but 0V on the S control terminal.
So Ive got a control side problem. The relay is working, the P/N switch works, engine and passenger compartment starter/ignition fuses are working. I wonder if the ignition switch could have been damaged by the short. Any suggestions on how to test that.
Also on the wiring diagram included on my last post, of the two wires connected to the starter, the wire that turns from purple to red (control side), what does that symbol between those two wires stand for? Whats the break there in the two different color wires? Could this be as simple as a blown inline fuse that Im unaware of?
Any and all input / suggestions are appreciated.

put your meter on the output of the switch and turn the key.

This is just a connector:


The wires just change color there.

Have you checked the fusible link up by the battery in your diagram?