My Ford Ranger won’t start and there’s no click?

I recently moved from the city to the countryside, and the house I bought had a surprise: a 2004 Ford Ranger. The previous owner said it “needs some work” but included it in the sale. I’m trying to figure out what’s wrong with it. What does it mean if my Ford Ranger won’t start and there’s no click happening when I turn the key?

Matt Terzi · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
It’s difficult to diagnose a Ford Ranger that won’t start and no click issue without seeing your truck in person, but let’s start by looking at a few things you can likely check easily at home with little or no experience in DIY car repair:
  • Check the battery, and look at the battery terminals to see if there’s any corrosion
  • Check the fuses and relays and replace any that are blown. Fuses and relays are cheap and easy to replace yourself
  • If it has an automatic transmission, see if the shifting column is misaligned—it has trouble finding a gear and the marker is off. This issue can be fixed by replacing cheap parts and tightening some bolts under the steering wheel
  • How does the truck’s key look? A damaged or worn down key might trigger the car’s antitheft “PATS” system. If you turn the key to the “on” position (before it turns over) and you see a flashing antitheft light on the dash, that’s probably the culprit
If none of that helps, you might be looking at replacing the starter, starter solenoid, ignition switch, or alternator. Unfortunately, wiring issues might also be at play here. If you don’t know how to diagnose these issues, we recommend calling a few local mechanics to see if they can help you.
We hope this helped you diagnose why your Ford Ranger won’t start. And while you’re here, we can also help you save a small fortune year after year on both
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