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Chrysler Repair/'94 New Yorker: etax relay by-pass


QUESTION: Hi Roland,
I am not real good with electrical stuff.  I do have a multimeter and know how to do continuity testing. I don't have a wiring diagram of my 94 New Yorker.  If I understand "float" it means there is continuity between the inboard pin C(85)of the starter relay and the socket that has a black/light green wire going to it with the key on in the start position.  Do I ground the black multimeter probe to the frame or neg post of the battery to test that inboard socket?  Also, what pins of the starter should have continuity when I have removed it out of its sockets.  I might as well test the other 4 switches as well if you can supply me the connections.  I am searching around me to find a mechanic with a snap-on code reader that I can take the car to.  If I can't I may have to ask you how to jump the trans control relay(Is this the EATX shutdown relay?) to get it out of limp to drive it the 50 miles to the nearest dealer.

As to pin C of the starter relay socket, with the key off there should be no voltage on it compared to ground, and it should show infinite resistance to ground (thus 'floating' with the key off). It would show continuity to black/light green wire at the trans plug. Then when you put the trans in P or N the wire should show that it is grounded, and when you turn the key to the start position the relay would click because the ignition key puts 12v on the A socket (the outboard socket of the relay). Those two actions, the grounding of C and the 12v on A put current through the activation coil of the relay, and thus it clicks.
To test for grounding of any point you would put black probe of the multi-meter Either on the battery - post or on any shiny metal surface of the body/engine. It would read 0 ohms if the point in question is grounded.
The clicking of the starter relay connects 12v from the battery fat red wire at the relay socket pin which is B (front pin) to pin D (rear pin of the socket which is connected to the starter solenoid switch via a light green wire.
As to the other switches inside the trans:
Violet would be ground in P, 3, and L.
violet/white would be ground in P, R, N, L
Brown/yellow and Black/light green would be ground in N, P
White would show 12v with the key in the run position
Violet/black show 12v with the key in the run position and the trans in R.
Light green/black would be ground in N, O, L
As to the trans control relay, you can jump it's socket from front to rear which will take it out of limp mode (e.g. let it start to shift again), but I would only use it that way when you are going to use the vehicle and be aware that it is put into limp mode for a purpose (which we won't know until you get a fault code readout of it.
Thanks again for the rating/nomination and would count once again (up to 5x in a month).

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hi Roland,
Where is the transmission relay located to do this.  I tried jumping across the front to rear pin of the EATX shutdown relay with and without the relay plugged in and the car is still in limp mode.

There is a discrepancy in the '94 manual about which relay socket is for the ETAX. The four relay sockets at the front of the box are #10 (wiper hi-lo) and 8 (starter), but then the etax relay is found in position 9 or 7, and an unused socket in 7 or 9 depending upon which page of the manual that you reference to. So whichever place you originally found to have a relay, (9 or 7) is indeed that ETAX relay. Please let me know which socket it is, in your vehicle.
The front pin of the socket should have 12v showing at all times, which comes from fuse B (20 amp) in that same box. When you jump from the front pin to the rear pin you then apply 12v to the transmission solenoid switches which are what allow the trans to shift gears (at pin 4 red wire at the 8 pin transmission plug).
So check that you do have 12v at pin 4 of the trans plug and if you do the trans should shift gears once again. But there is some sort of trans fault evidently that is disabling the relay actuation coil at the instruction of the TCM.
If you would do one more rating and nomination that would be great. It would be the 5th this month which is the maximum for any given questioner but I'm in a close 'race' for recognition.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hi Roland,
The EATX relay is position 9.  I have 12V at the front pin with the key off and on.  I have zero V with the key off at pin 4 of transmission plug with the key off and 12V with the key on.  I assume I did not need to have the car running. This would indicate to me that there is continuity and 12V to the solenoid switches. I guess it could be a solenoid problem, however I still don't understand how this would make the speedometer go to 55 when you start the car in P, or 55 in N, both at idle speed and then back to zero when shifted into R,D,3, and L with the car at rest with the brake on.  I'm thinking this may be a wiring issue.  Do you know what if any wire connections would involve the EATX and the speedometer.

Hi Bob,
You didn't mention whether the transmission will move the car, and will it shift gear if it will.
In any case, the output speed sensor of the transmission goes to the ETAX control module and from there its output is sent as a digital signal to the PCM and from there to the speedometer. I don't know why there is a discrepancy in the speedo reading depending upon which position the shift lever is positioned in. If you checked the switches inside the transmission as I listed them then presumably they are performing correctly.
What is the status of the fault code self-readout for the engine? If that is still OK, and you can drive the vehicle to a shop for a trans controller fault readout, that is probably what the best next step would be.
Please consider doing a rating and a nomination of me today for this is the last 5 hours of July and I am tied with another expert for the recognition as 'expert of the month'.

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Roland Finston


Free fast answer to your repair question about a Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth car, minivan, SUV, or truck. Problems with electronically controlled engines and transmissions as well as body wiring problems are my specialty. This free troubleshoot advice forum helps you diagnose faults, minimize repair costs or do-it-yourself.

I answer questions seven days a week and respond to you in about 30 minutes. "Maxed Out" means I am answering another question, briefly unavailable, or asleep overnight, so try again later.

I have do-it-yourself experience (50+ years) and a library of 100 1982-2011 Chrysler factory shop manuals and 20 multi-manual Chrysler Corp. CD's.

I was voted "Top Expert" 2010-2015, here at AllExperts, and have answered 20,000+ questions.


Five decades as a 'do-it-yourselfer' on domestic and imported cars.

Yahoo Autos Group called The Chrysler Lebaron Club (co-moderator)

Advanced degrees in Physics/bruised knuckles

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"Top expert" of 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 here at Allexperts. Quickest "average response time" at Allexperts (currently no. 1).

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