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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
More accurtely not much good a diagnosis. Once I am sure what to do I generally can do it. I think (actually fear) I have a starter problem. Battery is solid and everything seems to work....except for starting. When I turn the key, I can hear the solenoid click but the starter does nothing. Have the original long tube headers. it is tight down there. While just perusing this site and archives in the past I see I will have a major project to get that starter out which is why I said "fear". Just want to be sure it is the starter and not the solenoid. After I did a couple of turns of the key, I did notice the wire to the starter was warm. That would seem to tell me power is going there. Anything I can do to check the solenoid? Any help apprecaited. Thanks in advance.

I should add that I tried tapping the starter a bit to see if I could shake it loose assuming that might help............but it didn't.
 

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My 66 LTD did the same thing years ago. I placed jumper cables on each prong of the solenoid to bypass it and the car fired right up...that confirmed a bad solenoid.
 

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My 66 LTD did the same thing years ago. I placed jumper cables on each prong of the solenoid to bypass it and the car fired right up...that confirmed a bad solenoid.

Yikes! I would first try jumping the hot side wire to the "S" terminal on the top of the relay. When 12 v is applied to the S termnal (usually from the ignition key) it creates an electromagnet that closes the circuit from the left side to the right side of the solenoid, and on the the starter.

Also make sure yout negative battery is clamped on tight on both ends.

If you do end up using a jumper cable, clamp a pair of vicegrips on the solenoid bolt going to the starter and touch the hot wire to that. It will spark but won't melt anything.
 

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Clicking solinoid usually means low voltage somewhere. Check cables.
 

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I agree with Arnold. When Ford solenoids click it is usually because of a low battery. Check to see that the system is charging, cables are clean and tight and that the battery fully charged and does not have a dead cell.

First the starter spins slower and slower. Then the solenoid just buzzes and the starter gives half a crank or so. Finally the solenoid just clicks.

Your starter cable is hot because there is enough juice going through the cable from the solenoid to the starter to it to create resistance and heat, but not enough to spin the starter. That's how fires start. It's why every old clock at a car show doesn't work. Points stick, then current flows through the coil wire on the clock and burns it in half. Low battery and dirty clock points that eventually stick together cause it.

If your starter burned up because of exhaust heat, look into installing a heat shield over the starter.
 

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When you turn the key to CRANK, that IS giving 12V to the solenoid. Any further testing of the S terminal is a waste of time.

Cleaning the connections on BOTH SIDES of the Solenoid is a BIG MUST. Then clean your Ground to the Block, then clean the + cable end to the Starter.

Then while you're on a cleaning kick, clean the Chassis to frame ground, and if you dont' have one, MAKE one.

Once done (and it should take you about 18 minutes to do all that), ensure you have no less than 10.9 volts in your battery, (YES 10.9 will crank over your FE) hop in and start it.

If you STILL get the clicking noise after doing those 20 minutes of chores and maintenance on your car, Jumper both sides of the Solenoid (WITH THE KEY OFF OF OFF) If THAT makes your starter turn over then replace the solenoid and go about your day.
If that does NOT crank your starter then you got a crap starter.

There you go. 20 minutes of maintenance and a 14 second solenoid test and you are on the road again :)
 

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When you turn the key to CRANK, that IS giving 12V to the solenoid. Any further testing of the S terminal is a waste of time.

Cleaning the connections on BOTH SIDES of the Solenoid is a BIG MUST. Then clean your Ground to the Block, then clean the + cable end to the Starter.

Then while you're on a cleaning kick, clean the Chassis to frame ground, and if you dont' have one, MAKE one.

Once done (and it should take you about 18 minutes to do all that), ensure you have no less than 10.9 volts in your battery, (YES 10.9 will crank over your FE) hop in and start it.

If you STILL get the clicking noise after doing those 20 minutes of chores and maintenance on your car, Jumper both sides of the Solenoid (WITH THE KEY OFF OF OFF) If THAT makes your starter turn over then replace the solenoid and go about your day.
If that does NOT crank your starter then you got a crap starter.

There you go. 20 minutes of maintenance and a 14 second solenoid test and you are on the road again :)
good stuff.
 

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Bill,
Sounds like you are just right down the street from me. If you want I can come over and help you out with your issue. PM me and we can figure out your car.

JIM
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Gents - a belated thanks to all. My work schedule did not permit me to do anything but one more test. Did determine it was the starter. On 11/20 finally got around to pulling the thing. Interestingly it was jammed against the fly wheel. A quick turn of the crank and it popped out. Teeth on the end mostly gone. Fly wheel was OK. Off to rebuilder for starter.
 
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