I have a 1999 Chrysler Town and Country van. With the advent of the cold weather, it is not starting properly. We put in a brand new battery and still it does not start when it has been sitting overnight. It starts all day long, but not later. The wires look good and there are no idiot lights indicating that there is an engine or alternator problem. Will start with a jump, usually. Suggestions are welcome.
When you try to start of van, does the starter motor turn the engine over at its usual rate? Does the engine just not catch and run after a short period of cranking? We are trying to find out if you have a problem with cranking or with actual starting to run.
It turns slowly but trys to catch. Then is seems to be totally dead, even though there seems to be electical power (radio, heater blowers, etc still work).
This sounds like a weak battery. Get a new one, and if it is newer then make sure all the battery cables are clean and free of corrosion - at the battery and at the motor and ground sides of the cables too.
If you are using 10W-30 motor oil, you should get it changed and use a 5W or even 0W motor oil until warmer weather returns. These oils make it easier for the starting motor to turn over the engine and circulate faster to reduce engine wear in cold engines.
The starter maybe getting old. Also check the starter main wire from the battery at each end for looseness or corrosion. As a starter wears out the motor can try to pull more amps than your system can handle. If the starter is more than 5 years old shop around for someone to put in a new one.
Go have a competent mechanic put a set of contacts in the starter and be done with it.
Thank you all for your comments. I suspected that it was a starter motor issue. I was hoping that someone would tell me something that would let me not pay for a starter until next paycheck.
You dont need to replace the starter. You can have new terminals put in or have someone who knows how to braze build up the terminal on the positive side of the starter. So I say again, you dont need a new starter.