Starter won't engage, bad solenoid?


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Old 09-21-11, 08:46 PM
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Starter won't engage, bad solenoid?

The starter on my 12hp B&S doesn't want to engage. It sounds more like a worn pinion than a clicking solenoid but I'm not sure I'd know the difference if I heard it. The battery is freshly charged. Anyway, tomorrow I'll yank the starter and check it. I'm thinking if the pinion is okay, the solenoid is about the only other possibility. Am I right?
 
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Old 09-22-11, 07:25 AM
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I assume you hear a noise when trying to start it, meaning it's not a safety switch issue. Just to be sure it's not a bad connection to the solenoid connect a jumper wire from the battery pos to small terminal of solenoid. If same result try a booster cable from bat pos to starter terminal. Good chance it's just the plastic gear on the starter that needs replaced.
 
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Old 09-27-11, 08:40 AM
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I finally got back to this. This morning I pulled off the safety cover so I could watch the pinion (which is somewhat worn but wasn't severely rounded). The starter motor barely moves when I hit the starter but the solenoid raises all manner of ruckus.

At the moment I can't get to the solenoid because one of the screws on the access cover is seized and I can't quite put my hands on my impact driver to free it.

EDIT:
Silly question. I have two complete and separate sets of parts schematics for this mower but neither of them contains the word "solenoid." What's a solenoid called in a B&S parts schematic?
 
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Old 09-27-11, 08:55 AM
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They probably call it a relay. What kind of noise does the solenoid make? If it's a rapid clicking, chances are it's caused by low voltage.
 
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Old 09-27-11, 09:23 AM
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I think I've got it. I found a reference on a UK B&S mower forum (of all places) that mentioned the solenoid was supplied by the mower manufacturer, not the engine company. So I checked the Murray manual and it does show a part# for the solenoid.

It's a fast clicking but the battery is hot. I'll R&R all the connections and see if that helps.
 
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Old 10-13-11, 06:26 AM
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How'd you make out with your starter/solenoid issue?
 
 

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