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  1. #1

    Default Turn the key and nothing happens...Please Help!

    Hello everyone!!

    I am having a problem with my 03 Silverado 1500 5.3L. It started happening 6 months ago or so. I turn the key, all the dashboard lights and everything comes on, but the engine never attempts to turn over. There is no noise from the starter or anything except for the clicking from the fuse box under the hood. And, its very random. It may happen once a day or once a week. I can turn the key maybe 50 times, and on the 51st time it will start right up with full cranking power like nothing was wrong. Or, I could let it sit a few minutes then it would fire right up. It can happen after its sat all night or after stopping at a gas station.

    I have been told its the security system, starter, starter relay, etc. The only thing I have done so far is changed the starter relay.
    One more bit of information....I have recently had some issues on steering column. The spring on the shift lever broke so now it kinda flops and the orange wire going to the tow/haul button broke so I spliced it back together, I would say that all happened about the time it began not wanting to start.

    Please help.

  2. #2
    Sr. Apprentice Rocky's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Portland, Oregon


    Don't know for certain here.. BUT, I would suspect your last statement.
    Take it in to an Auto Electric shop is what I would do anyway. Have them scope it out.
    0311 1st MarDiv 1983-87. Semper Fi !

  3. #3
    Master Mechanic Jimmeh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Columbia Falls, Montana, United States
    Blog Entries


    Judging by lack of noise coming from the starter, I would definitely say it's an electrical issue. I would also take it in to at least have it diagnosed, and then go from there. Not much of a wiring guy myself.
    2005 Chevy Silverado W/T
    4X4|4.8 with some mods (has only slightly more pull than a 5.3)|Auto|4 door ex cab|Cooper Discoverer AT/3's in 285-75/17's on Helo 842's|Cooper Discover M+S 265-75/17's on Devino DV349's|Flowmaster 40 Single in Dual out with custom bent pipe from the end of the cats back|2" Procomp leveling kit|Custom made center console|Custom dyno tunes|Air Raid CAI|Air Raid Throttle Body Spacer|Apex brand topper|Kenwood Head Unit with Kenwood speakers|Painted mirrors/grille|Debadged except front emblem|Bilsteins front and rear
    Planned mods not in order
    2 inch lift|Custom front/rear bumper|hitch tire carrier|roof basket on topper, bars on cab|finish center console build|install Midland CB|Power options|Tint|Custom made raised bed in the bed of the truck|Lund LunarVisor
    Also have a 1992 Ford Ranger with a lot of stuff done to it. Currently waiting for a bit of a rebuild.

    "The only woman I'm pimping from now on is Sweet Lady Propane. And I'm tricking her out all over this town."

  4. #4
    Sr. Apprentice Rocky's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Portland, Oregon


    If the shift lever is not in the correct position then the starting system is disabled. I believe your poblem is in your column where things are not lining up properly.

  5. #5


    Lots of guesses, some may be right; but I'll toss in mine.

    The clicking that you are hearing is the starter relay. It will only click if everything is a go for starting.

    The relay provides power to the starter solenoid (part of the starter).

    If the truck does not start and the relay is operating (the clicking) you can have a problem with the relay, but you have changed that.
    You can have a problem with the solenoid,
    You can have a problem with the starter,
    Or, perhaps a wire problem between the relay and the starter.

    My guess, based upon experience, is the starter solenoid.

    The starter needs to be removed to inspect. Some solenoids are inside the starter, others are mounted to the outside of the starter case.
    If you don't have a lot of electrical experience, the best thing to do is take the starter to a shop where it can be tested.

    '09 Avalanche LTZ - Black
    '05 Envoy XL (sold)

  6. #6


    Currently autozone does free testing of the starter you just need to remove it and bring it to them.

    1996 Chevy Tahoe LT 5.7L V8 4X4 205,000+ miles. Built proudly at Janesville Assembly in Janesville, Wisconsin
    Basic mods: Lights all over, bunch of electrical work, and a couple cooling mods.

    Check out my other mods in My Garage:

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