1996 Disco no start - please help!

smar

Member
Jan 19, 2018
9
1
NV
Hello all! I am totally stumped with this, hopefully you guys can help! I was out on my property pulling some trees I cut with my disco. (Nothing crazy or anything) just pulling them closer to my house to cut up. I turned off the disco start cutting. About 10 mins later i jumped back in to move it and womp womp, i get. Sounded like the battery was dead. Went to jump it and nothing. (Used a jump pack and a my F-350) put that battery on charger overnight, next morning same thing. So I said maybe starter. (Starter in it was less then 6 months old) got a new starter, installed and didn't even get womp womp. Thought maybe I got bad starter. Got another starter...same thing. Messed with the relays on passenger side then got womp womp. Oh yeah I put. New battery in it too. Everything else works when key is moved...lights, radio , everything. I am getting 12.1v to the little black wire on the starter, so I know it's getting power there. What do you guys think it could be? What else can I check/change? I'm about 45mins east of New Orleans, if anyone is near me...I have lots of beer to share!!!
 

smar

Member
Jan 19, 2018
9
1
NV
Are your cable contacts all clean and tight?
On the starter, yes. I also cleaned and tightened battery cables. I know there is a ground cable on frame near passenger wheel? It looks good, but will clean that also. Any other contacts/grounds for me to check?
 

p m

Administrator
Apr 19, 2004
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La Jolla, CA
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If you have power to the starter solenoid yet it does not work, check the +12V cable going from the battery, and either check the ground connectivity between the body and engine or make a temp ground connection to make sure you have it.

If that's done and checked out, it is either a bad starter or seized engine, the first more likely.
 

smar

Member
Jan 19, 2018
9
1
NV
If you have power to the starter solenoid yet it does not work, check the +12V cable going from the battery, and either check the ground connectivity between the body and engine or make a temp ground connection to make sure you have it.

If that's done and checked out, it is either a bad starter or seized engine, the first more likely.
Thank you. I can turn the motor so I know it's not seized. Once the rain stops I plan on cleaning all the connections and seeing if that helps. Thanks again.
 
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smar

Member
Jan 19, 2018
9
1
NV
What's the historyof the vehicle? Oil Changes, mileage, engine work. etc.
I've had it for about two years. I did the all the routine maintenance on it. It drove great for me. Took it on many of camping trips high in the NV mountains and it never failed me.
 

WaltNYC

Well-known member
Mar 3, 2010
484
15
NYC
So, to be clear.
- new battery
- new starter (I'd check wiring on this to make 100% certain is it wired correctly)

Does the engine turn over? What exactly does "womp womp" mean? If the engine turns over at all we can basically rule out the starter and move on to the next possibility.

Other things to check...
- make sure the inertia switch has not been triggered
- examine connections to multi-function relay (near the fuse box in the engine bay)
- could be water ingress in the ECU
 

smar

Member
Jan 19, 2018
9
1
NV
So, to be clear.
- new battery
- new starter (I'd check wiring on this to make 100% certain is it wired correctly)

Does the engine turn over? What exactly does "womp womp" mean? If the engine turns over at all we can basically rule out the starter and move on to the next possibility.

Other things to check...
- make sure the inertia switch has not been triggered
- examine connections to multi-function relay (near the fuse box in the engine bay)
- could be water ingress in the ECU
Yes, New battery.
Yes, New starter (actually 2nd new starter as i thought i got a bad starter the first time)

Sometimes engine turns over very briefly. "womp Womp" as in how a car sounds when you try to start and the battery is super low. when i went out yesterday to try to crank it i didn't get any turn over. just a click like how a car sounds when battery is dead. (i know battery is not dead). Ill check the other suggestions today. I still need to clean connections. Zero or very little turn over makes me wonder if something is up with wiring. (still dont see how that could happen bc all i was doing was pulling logs).

Thanks again!
 

pdxrovermech

Well-known member
Jul 3, 2009
1,698
16
Portland, OR
certainly sounds electrical, but on the off chance its mechanical -
have you tried turning the motor over by hand?
pull the plugs and crank it.
theres a chance a cylinder filled up with coolant or oil and its coming to a head keeping you from turning it over.
 

smar

Member
Jan 19, 2018
9
1
NV
okay..im pretty sure it is a ground somewhere. i went today and tried to crank it. to my surprise it actually turned over. (only for about a half a second). so i let battery charger 100% and went to crank it again, same thing but it sounded a lot stronger. did it a few more times and noticed smoke from center console. freaked me out so i disconnected the battery. did some research on the web and found that this has happened with other people. seems to be a bad ground that is causing the power to search for a ground when key is turned. from what i found the power grounds to hand brake? i am going to take apart the center console and see if i can find the burnt wire. my question is, where are all the grounds that i should check on the disco? i know of one in the passenger wheel well. where are the other ones? anything on the transfer case? also, i cant more the hand brake up..its stuck down (not engaged), will i need to replace that wire or just disconnect and ride without one? (of course only if i can figure out the ground and get her running again) thanks!
 

p m

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Apr 19, 2004
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You have no chassis to engine block ground.
If you continue, you will fry your parking brake cable - which is the only thing providing said ground.
 

smar

Member
Jan 19, 2018
9
1
NV
You have no chassis to engine block ground.
If you continue, you will fry your parking brake cable - which is the only thing providing said ground.
hmm okay...so where is that ground? under center console? easy to find?
 

p m

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Apr 19, 2004
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No, it is under the truck.
Do yourself a favor, buy a three-foot section of starter cable from a parts store, and connect the engine block to negative battery terminal directly, and check if the starter works normally.
 

smar

Member
Jan 19, 2018
9
1
NV
awesome! thank you! if im burning up the parking break, doesn't that mean there is a bad ground somewhere? i tested starter before i installed and all was good.
 

p m

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Apr 19, 2004
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La Jolla, CA
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awesome! thank you! if im burning up the parking break, doesn't that mean there is a bad ground somewhere? i tested starter before i installed and all was good.
Sometimes I wonder if people can read.
Let me repeat what I said:
p m said:
You have no chassis to engine block ground.
If you continue, you will fry your parking brake cable - which is the only thing providing said ground.
let me add to the last sentence, to avoid any confusion - parking brake cable is the only thing providing ground connection between the engine block and frame in absence of ground cable. If you keep running your starter through it, you will burn the parking cable.
 

Swedjen2

Well-known member
Sep 12, 2018
323
48
California
awesome! thank you! if im burning up the parking break, doesn't that mean there is a bad ground somewhere? i tested starter before i installed and all was good.
Let's say we're all in a Production Review Board meeting with a bunch of guys who know what they're talking about, to a greater and lesser extent.
Based on input from the above board members and so there is no confusion, please explain what actions you're going to take to correct the issue.
I believe the goal here is to make Rovers run better, one at a time, not to give anyone a hard time. (Unless they deserve it.)
 

discostew

Well-known member
Sep 14, 2010
5,143
141
Northern Illinois
hmm okay...so where is that ground? under center console? easy to find?
There is also one attached to the t case. The ground that p m is showing you is important too. It's grounding your whole truck directly to the neg battery post. He mentioned that the picture is of a rt hand drive vehicle. So that big bracket won't be there, it will be on the left frame rail supporting the panhard rod. But the ground is going to be there.
The ground back by the t case is probably giving you your problem because when trying to crank the engine the starter ground is the block. The block needs that ground strap at the t case.
I've seen the smoke from the console. Back in the 90's I would have the trans out of one of these about 3 times a week. So a couple times I would forget that ground strap and get the smoke. All those cars were fine, yours is probably fine too.

No Ken, I'm not lying
 
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