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Old 12-03-2009, 09:02 AM   #1
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Is my starter dead? How do I replace it?

Drove home from work last night, everything was and has been fine w/ the Jeep. Run inside, load the woodburner, change clothes, take out the dog, and back in the Jeep about 30 mins later. Turn the key, click, silence. Try again - click, silence. Tried a few more times, everything's fine. Check my fuses, such as the clutch interlock, everything's fine. Headlights are bright, no signs of battery failure.
Try starting w/ the clutch in, clutch out, parking brake on, everything. No dice. Next (with the clutch interlock bypass fuse in), I try starting it with it in gear, but without pushing the clutch. It grabs and starts.
Since I was getting ready to leave and didn't want to get stranded, I shut it down and started it back up a couple of times normally. Good to go.
Went to dinner, came out and started fine, drove home and went to bed.

Woke up this morning, go to leave, get in and key-click, silence.
Tried rolling it backwards from the garage a bit to kinda give it a reverse bump start and I didn't get enough speed to fire. So, put it in first and tried to start it again without pushing in the clutch. This time it didn't work. Tried a couple more times and finally it struggled, chugged, and started.

I'm at work now, hopefully I'll be able to get home tonight.

Is this my starter??? I don't think it's a safety switch since I disabled the clutch interlock.

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Old 12-03-2009, 09:04 AM   #2
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Sounds like you have a bad clutch safety switch.

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Old 12-03-2009, 09:06 AM   #3
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Sounds like you have a bad clutch safety switch.
I disabled it. Still think so?
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:23 AM   #4
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starter solenoid going out. can buy one for a ford, (remote mount solenoid, and bypass the OEM one.)


I have no idea if the OEM is attached to the starter like a GM, or remotely like a ford....someone else should be able to chime in on that one.

But my bet is solenoid. good news is a new ford style can be had for under 20 bucks.
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:26 AM   #5
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starter solenoid going out. can buy one for a ford, (remote mount solenoid, and bypass the OEM one.)


I have no idea if the OEM is attached to the starter like a GM, or remotely like a ford....someone else should be able to chime in on that one.

But my bet is solenoid. good news is a new ford style can be had for under 20 bucks.
So that's separate from the starter? I'm not afraid to wrench myself, and can probably figure it out once I get started on it, but always like to gather as much info as possible before I start skinning my knuckles.
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:30 AM   #6
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I should've mentioned earlier -

98 TJ, 4.0L, Manual, appx 55k-60k mi.
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:36 AM   #7
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Mine did the samething two weeks ago while trail riding with some friends. When I got home that night I put a starter on it and it's fine now!
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:44 AM   #8
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Mine did the samething two weeks ago while trail riding with some friends. When I got home that night I put a starter on it and it's fine now!

So is the solenoid on the starter, or is it remote? Did you then replace the solenoid at the same time?
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:45 AM   #9
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Before buying anything, remove the battery cable connectors and thoroughly clean them and the battery posts with a wire battery brush. Then reinstall and securely tighten them. With this issue, don't just look at the connectors and conclude they're ok, they may not be. After you tighten the nut that holds each connector, try to move each connector to insure the connector isn't still loose due to a worn connector. If it's still loose, remove the connector. Then, remove the connector's nut and bolt and use a Dremmel, saw, etc. to remove a layer of lead from both sides of the gap that the nut and bolt squeeze together. That will allow the nut and bolt to squeeze the connector tightly enough around the battery post to insure a good connection.

Only after cleaning & tightening both battery connectors should you go on to start suspecting the battery, starter, solenoid, starter relay, etc.
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:57 AM   #10
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Yes, solenoid is on the starter. Starter at Pep Boys was only $95 bucks with life time warranty! I did what Jerry Bransford said when I was out in the middle of woods, it still didn't start. I had a friend use his meter and he said I was getting power to the solenoid but was not going threw it.
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:58 AM   #11
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I agree with Jerry, of course, my intrepid did this once every couple of months. Just had to clean and re tighten and i was set. My lights would work too, just not the car.
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Old 12-03-2009, 10:21 AM   #12
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Hammers do a fine job to if the solenoid is hanging up for emergencies to get you back going. Usually a two person job tho. One smacking the starter as the other is turning the key.
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Old 12-03-2009, 06:11 PM   #13
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Sounds like a solenoid to me.
But I agree with Jerry too, do what he said first. then check other stuff.
if its any help I have a 89 S-10 Blazer that does eth same thing, when ever it wants to it does nothing at all when I turn the key, and that one is the solenoid
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Old 12-03-2009, 06:41 PM   #14
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OK, cleaned and tested the battery - all's good with the battery.

Got a starter from the auto parts store. Has anyone replaced one of these? ONE bolt holds it on??? I found some online directions that indicate that there was two bolts, but the solenoid sits directly on top of what would be the second bolt hole. There's no room at all for a bolt's head to sit there even if I were to remove the solenoid first. Anyone???
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Old 12-04-2009, 09:36 AM   #15
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Bump for more info on replacing starter... ???
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:02 AM   #16
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I think there is a bolt on top and bottom. should be visable. my 4.0 in yj can be changed without raising the hood but im not sure about your placement probably can see better looking from under the hood!
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:03 AM   #17
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I bet for top bolt you will need a long extension!
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:17 AM   #18
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I should've taken a picture of this thing so you can see what I mean. There's no way (that I see) to FIT a second bolt in because the solenoid is directly on top of the second bolt hole. If I remove the solenoid and bolt it up, it doesn't appear the the solenoid will reattach because the bolt head would be in the way. (?)

Just trying to get a clear picture of what I need to do before I make my Jeep undriveable.

Thanks!
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:24 AM   #19
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Isnt the selinoid off set slightly toward passenger side just a bit, bolt should be right next to it.
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:26 AM   #20
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Maybe I need to take a second, better look at it because I know it doesn't make sense. The solenoid was DIRECTLY on top of the bolt hole. Actually, looking through the bottom of the bolt hole it actually appeared that small tab on the solenoid actually was recessed INTO the bolt hole.
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:30 AM   #21
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ok I checked out 4wd.com and its not offset, have you tried to looking from above?
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:34 AM   #22
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Yeah, but I don't have it in front of me. I'm hoping that once I figure out how to get the old one off, reinstalling the new one will make more sense.
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:42 AM   #23
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Alright, stole these images from 4WD.





How would I get to that second bolt hole w/ the solenoid directly on top?
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:55 AM   #24
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thats a diffrent starter, I was looking at one same design but a space between selinoid and starter bolt hole!
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:56 AM   #25
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The ones in the pics are what mine looks like. I can't imagine it just gets held in w/ one bolt. (?)
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:58 AM   #26
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:59 AM   #27
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It doesnt there are two, probably have to remove selinoid install then re install selinoid!
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Old 12-04-2009, 11:20 AM   #28
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We'll see. That Mean Green one makes more sence, but I've got the one I posted pics of above. I thought I might have to remove and install the solenoid, but even then I don't know if it'd fit back on.

Oh, why can't anything be easy?

I just know removing the 12 year old bolts is going to be a fun project in itself.
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Old 12-04-2009, 01:10 PM   #29
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I just know removing the 12 year old bolts is going to be a fun project in itself.
Start soaking 'em with Liquid Wrench, PB-Blaster, or Break-Free a day or two before and they'll come right out. My 13 year old bolts came right out though and I didn't use any of that. But I live in San Diego where the roads aren't salted so that helps.
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Old 12-04-2009, 01:17 PM   #30
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Start soaking 'em with Liquid Wrench, PB-Blaster, or Break-Free a day or two before and they'll come right out. My 13 year old bolts came right out though and I didn't use any of that. But I live in San Diego where the roads aren't salted so that helps.
Will do. I'm in the south west edge of the Rust Belt, Canton Ohio.

Jerry - have you ever replaced your starter? Any thoughts on the mysterious second bolt on the starter pic I posted above?

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