Sticking starter solenoid - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 03-03-2010, 08:56 PM   #1
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Default Sticking starter solenoid

Hopefully the final post in a long series of related issues!

The starter, sometimes, when hot, will not crank. The starter will click once, and then the voltage will drop completely. Hold the key in start, you get about one click every three or four seconds. Let go of the key, the lights come back on, voltmeter goes right back up to normal. The more you try to start it, the harder it gets; the best recourse is to step away from the car for fifteen minutes, come back, and give it a shot. However, when cold, the starter works like new. Once you get the car started, though, everything is great. Voltmeter goes right up to 13.8, idles smoothly, drives beautifully.

I ran all this by my manager at work (he ran a local speed shop for 26 years). He said that, because this happens occasionally and only when hot, this was definitely the starter solenoid.

So, my question is: should I replace the solenoid, or the whole starter? This starter is two years and 40,000 miles old. Advance has a Worldwide starter for $84.99 + $12 core, but $18.99 for just the solenoid.
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Old 03-03-2010, 09:03 PM   #2
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How'* the battery cables at both ends?
Disconnect both battery cables, check for corrosion, clean if necessary and reconnect. Try and see how it starts.
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Old 03-03-2010, 09:05 PM   #3
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The cables are fine on both ends.
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Old 03-03-2010, 09:11 PM   #4
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Hmm, 18.99 is alot cheaper than almost 200 for a starter that you may not be able to return. If your cables are fine top and bottom, I'd say yea go ahead and replace it. If you do, let us know how it went please.
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Old 03-04-2010, 03:41 AM   #5
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You know how to change just the solenoid?
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Old 03-04-2010, 08:01 AM   #6
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Changing the whole starter will be a lot easier then just the solenoid. If you can go the change, then do it, otherwise, swap the whole starter.
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Old 03-04-2010, 09:11 AM   #7
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I'm going to say ... the horrible connection at what you are calling a positive battery cable.

I'm thinking you haven't had a chance to fix that yet.
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Old 03-04-2010, 12:34 PM   #8
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Actually, someone owed me a Christmas present. I asked for battery cables. The interior lights are slightly brighter now, and the starter cranks a tad faster, but the larger issue remains.

The Haynes manual says how to change the solenoid. I may try that first, because it'* a cheap part. Expect a how-to on the subject of starter installation. (How'd we miss that one? )
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Old 03-04-2010, 01:30 PM   #9
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Someone'* looking for a wrench isn't he. Just as a reminder disconnect you battery before working. Unless you want an early 4th of July
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Old 03-04-2010, 01:53 PM   #10
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Is that what the Gearhead symbol means? I've always wondered about that.

Well, the last time I had the starter replaced in a shop (the pre-BF days), it cost me almost $300. Getting the same result for $20-$80 makes me smile a little.
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