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Old 02-24-2021, 12:05 PM #1
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Starts by itself with no key in

99 Limited with 270k. 4R had been sitting for a few day, then all of sudden what my kids say is that the alarm? never used it, started to go off, lights started blinking then everything turned off.

The battery was dead, so I charged it and as soon as I reconnected the battery terminals the wants to start with no key in the ignition.

I pulled the starter relay and it stopped. Put the relay back in starter engages (No key in the igntion) and motor is trying to turn over. I can turned the key and it starts and runs, but with what sounds like the starter is engaged. I can put it in drive and the starter disengages. Put it back in Park or N and starter reengages.

ANY Help would be great.
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Old 02-24-2021, 12:46 PM #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maddss View Post
99 Limited with 270k. 4R had been sitting for a few day, then all of sudden what my kids say is that the alarm? never used it, started to go off, lights started blinking then everything turned off.

The battery was dead, so I charged it and as soon as I reconnected the battery terminals the wants to start with no key in the ignition.

I pulled the starter relay and it stopped. Put the relay back in starter engages (No key in the igntion) and motor is trying to turn over. I can turned the key and it starts and runs, but with what sounds like the starter is engaged. I can put it in drive and the starter disengages. Put it back in Park or N and starter reengages.

ANY Help would be great.
Sounds like you have a stuck starter relay or a short to power to me. Try changing out the starter relay and see what happens. Here's a 2000 electrical wiring diagram dropbox. It's not for your year, but it's pretty close for most things. Dropbox - 2000 4Runner Electrical Wiring Diagram (EWD383U) - Printable - Simplify your life
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Old 02-24-2021, 12:57 PM #3
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I switched out the starter relay with another one. And it still does the same exact thing

Any idea on the short, where I should start looking
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:07 PM #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maddss View Post
I switched out the starter relay with another one. And it still does the same exact thing

Any idea on the short, where I should start looking
Start following the wiring harness. Any critters chewed on any of it?
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:15 PM #5
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Excellent thought on the starter relay...
Great thought on crewed wire as well.

[1]your starter solenoid plunger solenoid maybe stuck.. Tap that starter with a hammer and see if if that plunger is stuck in the start position.


[2] What happens if you put a key in the ignition and cycle it through? as its sounding like the ignition contacts in the back of the key or the ignition wire from that contact has 12 volt on it.....
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:19 PM #6
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Does the truck have a remote start, either factory or aftermarket? It can fail in the 'start' mode. My son bought a used Corolla and we discovered on our own that it had an aftermarket remote start that caused several problems. Removing the two 30A fuses for that was all I needed to do to fix it.
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:25 PM #7
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Anyone stop to consider this is just the start, Maximum Overdrive..... !!
Any giant meteors passing close to earth???
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:30 PM #8
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Iíll check for critters chewing on the wire.

Iíll also check the starter plunger And Iíll have to check the ignition switch

No remote starter.

And I hope the meteors arenít coming🤣
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:34 PM #9
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I had the same symptoms. I replaced the starter relay and also the starter itself with a new denso starter.
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:35 PM #10
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Is the ignition in off position. Cycle the key a couple of times after putting in the relay and see what it does. Also check the grounds Bad or dirty grounds do some finicky things.
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:37 PM #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brillo_76 View Post
Excellent thought on the starter relay...
Great thought on crewed wire as well.

[1]your starter solenoid plunger solenoid maybe stuck.. Tap that starter with a hammer and see if if that plunger is stuck in the start position.


[2] What happens if you put a key in the ignition and cycle it through? as its sounding like the ignition contacts in the back of the key or the ignition wire from that contact has 12 volt on it.....

agree with this one, had a starter stick on me, and and had to smack with a hammer to get it to stop. Replaced starter, fixed issue on this 4r.
However.......
For me it has normally been the opeosite, hit with a hammer to get to work.I did have a cheby, that to get it to start , had to smack starter with hammer, till I replaced that one, and a friend had a 4runner that was the same, had to hit it to get it to work to get out of the woods and back to town.
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:48 PM #12
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agree with this one, had a starter stick on me, and and had to smack with a hammer to get it to stop. Replaced starter, fixed issue on this 4r.
However.......
For me it has normally been the opeosite, hit with a hammer to get to work.I did have a cheby, that to get it to start , had to smack starter with hammer, till I replaced that one, and a friend had a 4runner that was the same, had to hit it to get it to work to get out of the woods and back to town.
I have used the hammer tap to fix a starter and an alt. Basically they just help in diagnosing the issue. So you pinpoint it down..
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Old 02-24-2021, 02:11 PM #13
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This still sounds more like a wiring issue (alarm or remote start) than a starter issue, since the starter stops when in gear. That hints that the starter relay is getting the 'start' signal, not that the relay or starter has failed.

So, get under the dash and start looking for aftermarket wiring! Rip out and repair what you find.

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Old 02-24-2021, 02:33 PM #14
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Quote:
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This still sounds more like a wiring issue (alarm or remote start) than a starter issue, since the starter stops when in gear. That hints that the starter relay is getting the 'start' signal, not that the relay or starter has failed.

So, get under the dash and start looking for aftermarket wiring! Rip out and repair what you find.

-Charlie
Ah good catch. I missed the part about the starter stopping once in gear.
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Old 02-24-2021, 04:16 PM #15
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You said it doesn't have a remote starter.
Have you had the vehicle since new?
Maybe there is one?
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