Switch, Solenoid, or Starter Problem?

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Old 03-19-07, 07:55 PM
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Switch, Solenoid, or Starter Problem?

I have a 94 Plymouth Grand Voyager LE 6-cl 3.8L engine, that I think may have an ignition switch, starter, and/or solenoid that is failing.

Symptoms: when I first try and start the car every morning the engine cranks very slowly - almost like the battery is under-charged. Eventually, usually within a minute, it starts, and then runs and starts fine the rest of the day.

Testing to date:

Tested voltage across the battery poles at 12.5.
Tested voltage at the solenoid with ignition key on at 12.1.
No check engine lights.
Battery gauge shows normal.
Headlight brightness is normal.

I also noticed discoloration on the insulation of the positive battery cable extending about one inch down the cable from the terminal clamp. I have not yet removed the cable (a lot of work!) to determine its overall condition.

Are there other tests I can do to narrow down the list to the culprit?

Thanks!
 
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Old 03-19-07, 08:13 PM
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voltage across the battery poles is that with car off or running if its while off thats ok. but if thats the power while its running not good. you could take car to advance auto or a place like that and they can slap a meter on battery and do a test to check bat, alt, for free .and if that all checks out my guess would be the starter is bad .
 
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Old 03-20-07, 04:02 AM
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Originally Posted by rdn2113 View Post
Symptoms: when I first try and start the car every morning the engine cranks very slowly -

I also noticed discoloration on the insulation of the positive battery cable extending about one inch down the cable from the terminal clamp.

Thanks!

I'd look closer at the battery cable, seem like lots of resistance there, if you can cut off that section and the cable stills long enough to reachs the battery, by all means, do it, then check the battery again.

I don't think it's starter = cranks very slow

I don't think it's ignition switch either = cranks very slow.
 
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Old 03-20-07, 06:35 PM
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I'll see if I can rig a spare cable just to test it.

Thanks!
 
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Old 03-20-07, 10:12 PM
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try cleaning stater connections and ground connections at both ends
 
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Old 03-21-07, 01:55 AM
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cables

My bet is cable, discoloration indicates corrosion and high resistance. try this crank it had feel the cable is it hot? this will require two people unless you are fast.
 

Last edited by michael van; 03-21-07 at 01:57 AM. Reason: mistake in wording
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Old 03-21-07, 06:48 AM
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slow cranking

Since you have a volt meter put one lead on the batt post or bolt and the other lead on the starter bolt,have somebody crank it over and the reading you have will be the voltage loss in that circuit. You can check the ground side the same way.
 
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Old 03-21-07, 07:11 AM
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Hugh

See.....it sounds like to me that you have eliminated the circuit as the problem......you report you are getting 12.5 volts at the cellunoid and the battery.......if it were a connection or ground problem.....you would not have that. When you turn the key to you hear a slap noise (cellunoid engaging the contacts) just before the engine slowly turns? If you do......its not your cellunoid. You could have a flat spot on the starting motor......and it may need to be replaced.......In my opinion just replace the cellunoid as well.....it wont be that much more and it will put you at peace of mind. I just changed out a bad starter motor from my tacoma. Then I spent the next 7 hours putting in a new NAPA starter and cellunoid. When I went to hit the key......the same problem as before occured......the cellunoid clicked but the motor would not turn over the engine. As it turns out I got a remanufactured starter from NAPA that was faluty......all that work for nothing. My point is that you shoud bench test the new motor before installing.....wish I had done that.....it would have saved me 7 hours and a whole lot of frustration.
 
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Old 03-21-07, 08:54 AM
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Replace the battery cables (both of them)
 
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