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Replacing starter, anything tricky I should know?

 
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Bri2001
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 8:50 am    Post subject: Question Replacing starter, anything tricky I should know? Reply with quote

I am getting the somewhat common starter hang up and grinding issue occasionally at startup. And no, I do not hold the key too long, I know you just have to tap the key to the start position Smile

So I am replacing the starter on my 3.4L tomorrow. From what I have found on here it sounds like it should be fairly easy. Is there anything in particular I need to be careful of, or any tricks I should know? Any special tools involved?
Thanks in advance.

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Bill58
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 9:26 am    Post subject:   Reply with quote

Might consider buying new vs. reman, there are some crap rebuilders out there.
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Bri2001
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 2:42 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

My friend works at Auto Zone and got this reman. for me, after testing 2 or 3 of them multiple times. He is confident it is good, but if not I'll take it back and he'll replace it with a brand new one (not a reman) at no charge.

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70_Malibu
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 11:10 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

I'm sure anything off the shelf from NAPA or whomever would be fine. I've never had a problem with the box stores parts. If you've done the research, have the tools... rock it.

Let us know how it goes!!

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Bri2001
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 2:07 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

Well, I decided not to replace the starter. I had my friend, who is a very good mechanic, come over to help me replace it. After explaining the issue to him, he said it could be several things other than the starter itself. After listening to it start several times (it never did grind while he was testing it) he said the starter sounds perfect. It could be an electrical or computer issue not telling the starter to disengage quick enough after it starts. He checked a bunch of wires and sensors. He didn't necessarily find anything wrong, but re-routed some wires that were close to the exhaust manifold and head. We started the car about 20 times and of course it never did grind while he was looking at the car. It has been a week since he looked at the car, and the starter has not acted up once. I hope I didn't just jinx it!

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 2:51 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

my sister-in-laws grinds a lot... but my wife used to drive that car... if she wasnt sure if the car was on shed turn the key to hear the grinding... DOH! i yelled at her the first time i saw her do it, she said she had done it a lot... Thumb Down

end of my story lol...

its not that hard to replace if you have to, maybe something inside is getting hung up? the worst part i found was the plastic guard for the flywheel, and its kinda cramped... but i did it on the ground

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grimsin
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 2:56 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

love my 05, once it is started it wont let you engage the starter, turn the key all you want does nothin! Very Happy
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billy101
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 3:30 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

grimsin wrote:
love my 05, once it is started it wont let you engage the starter, turn the key all you want does nothin! Very Happy


yeah my 01 does the same thing....funny how some do it, and some dont?
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Bri2001
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 3:37 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

I never tried turning the key when the car is already running. I'll have to try it *once* to see what it does.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 4:03 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

billy101 wrote:
grimsin wrote:
love my 05, once it is started it wont let you engage the starter, turn the key all you want does nothin! Very Happy


yeah my 01 does the same thing....funny how some do it, and some dont?


Mine doesn't grind either. Nor does most of the GM vehicles nowadays.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 6:26 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

Bri2001 wrote:
Well, I decided not to replace the starter. I had my friend, who is a very good mechanic, come over to help me replace it. After explaining the issue to him, he said it could be several things other than the starter itself. After listening to it start several times (it never did grind while he was testing it) he said the starter sounds perfect. It could be an electrical or computer issue not telling the starter to disengage quick enough after it starts. He checked a bunch of wires and sensors. He didn't necessarily find anything wrong, but re-routed some wires that were close to the exhaust manifold and head. We started the car about 20 times and of course it never did grind while he was looking at the car. It has been a week since he looked at the car, and the starter has not acted up once. I hope I didn't just jinx it!


The "grind" you describe is most likely due to a weak spring on the starter drive. The spring pushes the drive gear back after the engine starts and flywheel speed exceeds the speed of the starter. When the spring gets weak from age it can't push the gear back in fast enough and you get that run-on grinding noise.
If the starter is good electrically its pretty easy to take the nose off and replace the starter drive. The only bad part is you still have to R&R the starter to take it apart.
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Bri2001
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 12:16 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

Thanks for the info. Can I buy just the starter drive and spring somewhere, and not the whole starter?

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 12:26 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

Bri2001 wrote:
Thanks for the info. Can I buy just the starter drive and spring somewhere, and not the whole starter?


The drive is a complete assembly, the spring is part of it, Available at any auto parts store
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Bri2001
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 12:36 pm    Post subject:   Reply with quote

Great, thanks. I'll check into it, hopefully it's a lot cheaper than the whole new starter.

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