Column shifter won't go into Park = no start - Dodge Cummins Diesel Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-03-2019, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
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Column shifter won't go into Park = no start

Forgive me starting a new thread on this but we narrowed it down some.
Original thread:
https://www.cumminsforum.com/forum/3...tors-what.html

After talking to Genos and Timbo who were both very helpful, decided to try a new Park Neutral Safety Switch. They both said it does not sound like my APPS is the problem.

So after installing a new PNSS, and fully charging both new batteries, still no response to the key in the start position.

Now the column shifter will not go completely into the P position, at least the P does not light up. No response in N either, but all positions from R to 1 light up. Just 'dead' key, no click or anything, just like when its in gear.
Nothing on the column linkage or cable appears out of the ordinary.

Lately it has honked at me (more than normal) when not fully engaged into P. Seems like my no start must be somehow caused by this linkage or related wiring.
I understand if its mechanically not going far enough into P to open the start circuit, but why wouldn't it still activate in N position?
I have seen rigs in the past that you had to wiggle the shifter around a bit to get them to start but wiggling the shifter around P & N makes no difference.

Is the shifter supposed to be in a certain gear position to install a new PNSS?

Has anyone had to work on or replace any of the column linkage to fix this?

Any suggestions are quite welcome, to say the least! Very grateful to everyone who contributes here.

Thanks! Dave


2004.5 2500 4x4 short bed AT, 249,000 mi
assume all stock except K&N filter & intake tube but history prior to 220,000 miles is unknown
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-04-2019, 04:47 AM
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When I saw your first post about this I kinda laughed as this has been happening to me recently in the last month or so. Even has honked at me a couple times parking and getting out and I have't done that shtuff since the truck was new to me. The occurrences are random and I get in to start the truck and it won't because the selector square is not on P. I have to slide the shifter into N to start the truck with the key. Because this issue is coming on now hen I am needing to change ujoints (I can already feel the vibration coming on and need to change them asap). I'm suspecting that is having an affect on the transmission, something like the slack or tension in the driveline from the fitting tolerances opening up down the line. Even sprung a slight weep in the rear pinion seal from the vibes. (I know I'm sitting on a time bomb right now).

Anyway, no solution for you but just wanted to throw my info in here about ujoints in case it's something you had not thought about. Your first post had me wondering if I've got other issues I need to check for besides ujoints. But I'm hoping once I put the new ujoints in the parking/starting/honking situation goes away. It's embarrassing!

2006 Ram 2500 QCSB 4x4 48RE 3.73 285/70R17 AT3s H2s GDP MK2 Thuren 2" Coils Fox 2.0 & Track Bar N62'd "AF" steering Custom Diesel Brace MaxxLinks Modded stock airbox Coolhose 4040XL
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-04-2019, 05:37 AM
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To rule out issues,
Any ECM codes?
Any EMIC cluster (body module) codes?

TRS should be installed with trans in low, also should drop pan to make sure rooster comb is intact and properly activating TRS, shifter cable linkage and detent ball good.

04 QCSB HO Automatic
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-04-2019, 11:10 AM Thread Starter
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Codes P 0514, 0521 & 2609 have been hanging around for months with no trouble. Found 2609 when changing r side battery, grid relay loose hot wire.

Codes P 2121 & 2122 are both brand new with this new batteries / shifter incident.

Front driveline joints and slip yoke are good & tight.

Thanks guys

2004.5 2500 4x4 short bed AT, 249,000 mi
assume all stock except K&N filter & intake tube but history prior to 220,000 miles is unknown
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-04-2019, 08:38 PM
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If sure good batteries and cables including grounds, I would be checking good connections under and to PDC(fusebox) and ECM connections.
Any EMIC (body/cluster codes)???

04 QCSB HO Automatic
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 03:30 AM Thread Starter
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Well, it turns out it was the starter. A Cummins Denso starter, likely the original so I guess can't complain about lasting 248,000 miles.
Yes, the top bolt is a PITA but actually not that bad. The worst pain was getting the battery hotwire reattached with the thick rubber boot fighting every effort to get the nut started.
Did it all from the bottom but I did remove the inner fender and the front driveline for better access and visibility. That helped a lot.

The 2 brushes attached to the field coils were worn down to be bottomed out in the brush bracket and everything was coated thick with carbon including the armature surface where the brushes contact.
Partly out of curiosity and partly financial necessity at the moment I cleaned it up good, polished the contact surface, added a couple of custom fitted shims between the short brushes and their springs to give them a little more push. The other 2 brushes still have some actual life left in them.

I really wanted to rebuild it entirely instead of a cheapo replacement so I took it to the only shop here that still does rebuilding to get brushes and solenoid contacts. He said since the brush wires are so short and soldered on instead of a screw connection, he won't even attempt replacing brushes in one of these.
Since my soldering expertise is marginal at best, I just jury-rigged it to see if I could get it to work at all. Partly to see if there was still something else wrong in the column linkage or PNSS.

After fighting the battery cable connection boot long enough to have cramps in both arms and my neck, I finally got the nut started and tight. After that the mounting bolts were easy.
Success!!! Fired right up!
I don't know how long or how many starts I will get out of those short brushes but long enough to get a proper starter here. Now that I know the procedure and right tools, next time will be easier.

Just thought I would pass on what actually solved the problem. Don't be afraid to tackle your own starter replacement, not as bad as many on youtube describe but you will probably curse that rubber boot.

2004.5 2500 4x4 short bed AT, 249,000 mi
assume all stock except K&N filter & intake tube but history prior to 220,000 miles is unknown
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