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This is strange. About two years ago my truck wouldn't start. 98 Ram 1500 5.2L, 2wd, 120k miles now.

When this occurs I can hear the fuel pump go and I hear the starter relay in the engine fuse box click. I don't hear the starter solenoid click. If I rock the vehicle forward/back it still won't start. Usually I try the key 10 or 20 times and swear a little. I've tried switching the starter relay and that doesn't help.

Eventually, always within 5-10 minutes it will start. This happened two years ago the first time, again a few months later. In the last 3 months it's happened about 5-6 times, every couple of weeks. Other than that it starts fine, except sometimes there is a 1-2 second delay before it cranks when I turn the key.

Any ideas??? I've called the dealer and since I don't know when it will happen very hard to take the vehicle in.
 

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My guess would be that the starter is going bad. It could be possible that the starter relay that is clicking could be bad, but probably more likely to the the starter especially with 120K miles.

The starter relay is likely the same as some of the others. Check the number on the relay and switch it with another one like the horn if they are identical to see if it continues.

There is also the park/neutral switch or the clutch switch but these should be ok because the starter relay won't click unless it is in park/neutral or the clutch is pressed.
 

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The 2000 Caravan we used to have did the exact same thing. Right before I changed it, it wouldn't start at all...luckily we were at a friend's house and didn't have anything pressing to do.
The solenoid is built onto the starter and was not a replaceable item.
 

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Does this only happen when the vehicle is hot (been driven) or can happen when cold?
Either way it sounds like the starter, but my wifes Topaz had the same problem and the starter worked after it cooled down for about 10-20 mins. Always started when cold.

KP
 

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I have experinced the same problems on the vehicles I operate in the military, Light Armored Vehicles. If we hit the starter with a hammer then it would start, but it made that clicking noise like you described. When we pulled the starter and tested it the selonoid wasnt engaging the the drive plate, so my guess is that your starter is bad
 
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