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Greetings,

I’ve had a problem with my 2009 Dodge Caliber not starting intermittently for almost two years. I recorded the problem (see the link to the video below). The only pattern that I’ve noticed is that the problem seems to be absent 24 hours after disconnecting and reconnecting the battery. I've had it looked at multiple times and even brought it to the dealer to get a proper diagnosis, however, no one has been able to get the problem to duplicate. I’ve had the following parts replaced over the past 20 months: 2 new starters, new battery, replaced both battery cables, and a redundant ground terminal from the starter to the battery.

Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks In Advance,

Mike

Video (you may have to copy and paste into your browser) https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B3Gq0WAQ-x8EYUV0bG5zMlFnR00/view?usp=sharing
 

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My son's 2017 is doing the exact same thing as shown in this video. Did you find a resolution?
There's no such thing as a 2017 Caliber...did you mean 2007?

There are a LOT of reasons why this might be happening, but I'll suggest one thing to try:

Turn the key to the ON position (NOT start) and listen for a quiet hum from the back of the car...this is the fuel pump priming. If you do NOT hear this, then try to start the car and it won't fire up, you either have a problem with your fuel pump OR the fuel pump relay has gone bad (which is a common problem). The relay lives in a small relay box behind the driver's side headlight...you need to either remove the battery or remove the inner driver's side wheel well liner to get to it. It's actually easier to just remove the whole front fascia, but that takes a little effort. :)

The relay box tends to collect a little water in the rearward driver's side corner, which rots out one of the pins on the fuel pump relay. That corrosion eventually creates an intermittent connection. Only problem to checking to see if this is the issue is that you need to pull the relay out to see the corrosion, and once you do that the bad pin breaks off in the socket and you're screwed. If you're going to check it, be prepared with a spare relay and the ability to fix the problem.
 

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When the key is turned to “on”, everything comes on as expected (lights, windshield wipers, radio, etc.). When the key is turned it just does a series of clicks ( not the same as the clicking you hear with a weak battery ). It will do the same thing with jumper cables hooked up. Sometimes it will do the above half a dozen times, then I’ll try again and it will start, then I can shut it off and it will immediately not start again. Does the same thing in Park or Neutral.

Accessed the “behind the headlight” relays last night and found no corrosion. I’ve had the fuse box out and checked all of those wires and found nothing.

To me it seems to be some sensor in the starting sequence that prevents starting that is failing but I don’t know what to check and I don’t want to just start buying things at random.

I ordered a “BlueDriver” scan tool and maybe that will pick up something.
 

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From the sound in the video my first thought is bad starter solenoid. But note the first guy replaced his starter twice. Too bad he never came back to say if he ever fixed it.
Listen good and see if you can figure exactly where the clicking is coming from.
 

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Have somebody put their ear to the TIPM (ie: fuse box) and listen to see if the clicks come from there. You're probably energizing relays in the TIPM when you turn the key to the ON position so the clicking may not be abnormal.
 

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Just for record for anyone reading this post in the future with a similar problem.

After reading something somewhere about the key security chip issue, I sat in the car, closed the door, put the key in the ignition, locked and unlocked the door using the door controls and the care started right up and has started every time for two days now. Until it has the issue again and I can repeat that process, I hesitate to say this was the solution, but it appears to have been a key security chip issue. I'll update this thread if anything changes in the near future.
 

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Hi JCMORGAN and MKALK, my car has the same issue. Please share if you have found the solution. Thanks
 
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