Salvaged my Inhibitor Switch

Jay Ayala

Explorer
Originally posted in December of 2002. Can now be found in the 4x4wire forums in the Archived Mitsubishi section. Problems: No Start No Crank(Salvaged my inhibitor switch!)


Okay, so on my way to work this morning I went to turn on my Raider. That is when I noticed it, the starter wasn't turning, so how in the hell will my engine start? At first I assumed that the battery must have died.

So I checked it by turning on head lights radio and dome lights. They all functioned normally. Intensities were all normal.

Then I tried again. Nothing happened. I looked down at my shifter (Automatic) and realized that the little red indicator was pushed up a little higher than normal. So I jiggled it to its regular position in Park.

Then I tried again. It fired up just fine. That completely baffled me. I thought to myself that must be it. It wasn't registering in Park for some reason? So I decided to test it.

I turned off my raider, I moved it to that same position, just so the little red indicator shows half way above the Park position. Then I attempted to start it. Nothing happened.

I re-adjusted the shifter into the regular Park position. Then I attempted to start it again. It fired right up.

So now I'm positive that I know why it did not start. The shift lever might be loose or the cable has too much slack that is causing the Raider not to start. So then, my question to you all is:

How do I adjust the Automatic Sifter?

'89 Dodge Raider, V6, Auto Tranny.
 

Jay Ayala

Explorer
Originally posted by Geophie in December of 2002:

I assume it is the neutral safety switch.

I don't know if it can be adjusted or cleaned but if all else fails you can replace it if it is the problem. I think it is right under the console near the shifter on automatic gen1 Monteros.
Well thanks for the reply Geophie, now that you told me what to look for I did a little research. It's actually called the Inhibitor Switch. To replace it, I will have to remove the center console and a few other things.
 

Jay Ayala

Explorer
Originally posted in December of 2002

Oh My God, I did it. As if there was any doubt. I was able to salvage my Inhibitor Switch. Now my Raider starts without having to worry about the shift lever's position.

Sweet!!!

Now I just climb in, put the key in the ignition and VAROOM! Man what a pain in the butt. If I knew the fix was as simple as it was, I would have done it a long time ago. What can I say, PROCRASTINATION is both my friend and my enemy.

So let me tell all of you about it.

Took the center console out, easy enough just a matter of removing a few screws and bolts. It pulled right out. First thing I had to do was find the INHIBITOR SWITCH. Pretty easy.


The next step I took was to assess the damage. You may not be able to tell from these Photos, but the inside was caked with dirty grease. As a matter of fact, the switches movement back and forth was gritty!



I made a decision to clean it and test it seeing as how it wouldn't involve much work. I had an ingenious idea. Q-Tips!! They absorb just about anything, but they tend to shed cotton some times. So, I carefully cleansed the gritty grime away. There was quite a small amount of it. But when we are talking about something as small as this, it was pretty significant.




A final inspection shows much cleaner contact points.



I re-bolted it in its spot which involve two elliptical holes and I pushed the switch as far forward as I could then tightened the bolts. Then I tested it by putting it in Park so that it is in its normal operating position, and trying to turn the key. The Raider started just fine. Now for the real test: I pushed the lever forward as far as it would go past park, not very much play, but I pushed it anyway. I turned the key and to my surprise it fired right up. I was under the assumption that it was a bad switch. But it turns out that it was just dirty.

Total time it took me including grabbing my camera, q-tips and running back and forth for screw-drivers and taking a quick phone call was less than 20 minutes. As a matter of fact, it's taking me more time to organize my thoughts and posting this than it took me to SALVAGE MY INHIBITOR SWITCH! LOL!

Okay enough for now. I hope these pictures might be able to help in the future.

Jay
 

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Jay Ayala

Explorer
Originally posted by off-roader in January of 2003:
You may want to re-apply some di-electric grease to the conductive surfaces. This way, it doesn't wear down the copper. Before doing that, also use isopropyl alcohol with the qtips on the copper. This removes any built up oxidation. Once dry, apply the grease.

Really nice macro shots BTW. What kind of camera did you use?
Ray
Comment from Jay in March of 2014
I cannot express to you how important this tip is from off-roader. If you are going to go through these steps, I highly recommend you add this piece of advice while you are at it. If memory serves me right, I had to replace my original Inhibitor Switch that I salvaged from one that came from the junk yard. I specifically recall coming back to this thread and re-reading this specific tip. In the last 12 years since I did this along with Off-roader's tip on the isopropyl alcohol and the dielectric grease, I haven't had to touch the inhibitor switch.
 

off-roader

Expedition Leader
Comment from Jay in March of 2014
I cannot express to you how important this tip is from off-roader. If you are going to go through these steps, I highly recommend you add this piece of advice while you are at it. If memory serves me right, I had to replace my original Inhibitor Switch that I salvaged from one that came from the junk yard. I specifically recall coming back to this thread and re-reading this specific tip. In the last 12 years since I did this along with Off-roader's tip on the isopropyl alcohol and the dielectric grease, I haven't had to touch the inhibitor switch.
You're too kind Jay. Being a former Navy Computer tech helps. That's where I learned about that. Grasscat may have also helped to remind me at some point. Hard to remember everything these days LOL.
 
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