Starter not working - help?

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by Sam McLauchlan, Nov 30, 2007.

  1. I have a 2000 Saturn SL-2 and three times in the last month when I turn
    the key, all the dash lights go on but the starter doesn't engage. If I
    leave the car a while it will start, but I can get a diagnosis because
    when I take the car in it has started.

    Does it sound like a solenoid or starter problem? Thanks.
    Sam McLauchlan, Nov 30, 2007
  2. Sam McLauchlan

    Oppie Guest

    Since all the lights go out on attempted start - look first at the battery
    terminals for corrosion. Take them off and clean if necessary. How old is
    the battery? 3 to 5 years is about normal lifetime.
    Check the battery charging with a voltmeter when running - should be about
    13.8V and about 12V when off. With engine off, measure battery voltage (at
    the battery) while switching on headlamps. If the voltage drops more than
    ..25V, battery is bad.

    There is another possibility in that the starter is shorted or the engine is
    somehow jammed from turning over. Either of those will cause an enormous
    cranking current that will dim the lamps. Don't sweat this yet until the
    battery and terminals are checked first. If the starter needs replacing- it
    will come with a new solenoid.

    If you know someone with one of those jump-start battery packs - try that
    out to see if it starts any easier. Make sure you get good contacts on the
    clip leads. (I bought one a couple of years ago when I got stuck in the
    boonies with a dead battery and a sick wife)
    Oppie, Nov 30, 2007
Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.