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1988 Wagon won't start


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19 replies to this topic

#1 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 01:17 PM

Ok here the deal. It turns over, and makes that clicking sound, but will not start. I replaced the Battery, so its brand new. Everything works(radio, lights etc.) I drove to work, and then 4 hours later it would not start. I need help....... Is this the Baterry, or starter. Everything looks normal, but it just wont start. Thanks

Eddie

#2 All_talk

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 01:21 PM

Start with the basics... fuel, spark and compression. Recent CEL? Any stored codes in the ECU?

Good Luck
Gary

#3 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 01:36 PM

I dont think its any of that stuff. Will I be able to jump start it????Eddie

#4 MorganM

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 01:41 PM

So it started right up with the new battery?

#5 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 01:47 PM

Yes, It started up, and I drove it for about a week, and then I drove to work, and 4 hours later it wouldnt start, but everything else comes on, and This happened on Friday. It used to just do that if the radio, or lights were on, and then when I turned all them off, then it would start.



Eddie









So it started right up with the new battery?



#6 MorganM

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 01:54 PM

Can you do a load test on the battery right now to see if its drained? I'm thinking maybe a slow power draw from a short circut might be draining it.

OR

Starter is on its way out. Just guessing by how hit or miss the problem seems to be. That clicking is your selinoid in the starter doing its thing but often times the contacts for the motor get worn or sticky. Try hitting it good with a hammer (might need to slip a crow bar down to it then hit that with the hammer) that can bust free the contacts and let it start up.

#7 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 01:58 PM

How do I do that, and what would cause tghe short circuit???

Eddie


Can you do a load test on the battery right now to see if its drained? I'm thinking maybe a slow power draw from a short circut might be draining it.

OR

Starter is on its way out. Just guessing by how hit or miss the problem seems to be. That clicking is your selinoid in the starter doing its thing but often times the contacts for the motor get worn or sticky. Try hitting it good with a hammer (might need to slip a crow bar down to it then hit that with the hammer) that can bust free the contacts and let it start up.



#8 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 02:06 PM

Are the contacts under the hood, or is it behind the dash.



Eddie

Can you do a load test on the battery right now to see if its drained? I'm thinking maybe a slow power draw from a short circut might be draining it.

OR

Starter is on its way out. Just guessing by how hit or miss the problem seems to be. That clicking is your selinoid in the starter doing its thing but often times the contacts for the motor get worn or sticky. Try hitting it good with a hammer (might need to slip a crow bar down to it then hit that with the hammer) that can bust free the contacts and let it start up.



#9 karinvail

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 02:19 PM

Are the contacts under the hood, or is it behind the dash.



Eddie


I believe he was referring to the contacts IN the starter getting stuck. If you give the starter a bump and then try to start the car.....

#10 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 02:37 PM

Most likely this will not be something I can do right away., because the car is stuck at my work parking lot. Will I be able to jump start it??????Eddie

#11 karinvail

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 02:43 PM

Most likely this will not be something I can do right away., because the car is stuck at my work parking lot. Will I be able to jump start it??????Eddie


does it have a manual transmission? If the starter is bad, jump starting it will not work. YOu will have to push the car until it's going fast enough to pop the clutch and start it from engine compression.

If it's just the battery drained for some reason, then jump starting should work.

#12 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 02:49 PM

In order to bump the contacts on the starter, do i go underthe hood, or would I have to take apart the steering wheel. I am not all educated on the mecahincs, I am in a learning phase.

Eddie




does it have a manual transmission? If the starter is bad, jump starting it will not work. YOu will have to push the car until it's going fast enough to pop the clutch and start it from engine compression.

If it's just the battery drained for some reason, then jump starting should work.



#13 singletrack

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 03:01 PM

YOu will have to push the car until it's going fast enough to pop the clutch and start it from engine compression.


Try that. Alot of times my 88 won't turn over via the starter, though typically at high altitude. If you can roll start it, that'll really narrow down the possible causes. Rolling it will get the engine turning faster than the starter can, maybe it just needs some help getting gas.

Here's a REAL easy way to test your starter. Crank it in gear with the p-brake off. If the car moves, then the starter is good! There can be nothing wrong with the starter, and it still won't wanna turn over.


I usaually drive it up a hill on starter power, then pop the clutch in reverse as I'm rolling back down. Works like a charm. :drunk:

Good luck finding a hill in Dallas though. Two strong dudes can push it fast enough to start.

Edit: That's won't work on an Auto, BTW.

#14 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 03:07 PM

It's an automatic.


Eddie


Try that. Alot of times my 88 won't turn over via the starter, though typically at high altitude. If you can roll start it, that'll really narrow down the possible causes. Rolling it will get the engine turning faster than the starter can, maybe it just needs some help getting gas.

Here's a REAL easy way to test your starter. Crank it in gear with the p-brake off. If the car moves, then the starter is good! There can be nothing wrong with the starter, and it still won't wanna turn over.


I usaually drive it up a hill on starter power, then pop the clutch in reverse as I'm rolling back down. Works like a charm. :drunk:

Good luck finding a hill in Dallas though. Two strong dudes can push it fast enough to start.

Edit: That's won't work on an Auto, BTW.



#15 karinvail

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 03:16 PM

It's an automatic.


Eddie


Well, bump starting it won't work with an automatic.....

The starter is under the hood. In my car ('86 EA82) it's just beside the distributor near the firewall. Follow the positive wire from the battery - that leads straight to the starter. The starter goes through the bell-housing of the transmission/transfer case and engages the flywheel to start the motor. If the solonoid is not working in the starter, then it will not engage the flywheel and will not turn the engine over. Giving the starter a tap might or might not work, it's worth a shot though.

#16 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 03:24 PM

I did notice that the wire was kind of coroded, and looked like it neede to be replaced. Could that be the reason.





Well, bump starting it won't work with an automatic.....

The starter is under the hood. In my car ('86 EA82) it's just beside the distributor near the firewall. Follow the positive wire from the battery - that leads straight to the starter. The starter goes through the bell-housing of the transmission/transfer case and engages the flywheel to start the motor. If the solonoid is not working in the starter, then it will not engage the flywheel and will not turn the engine over. Giving the starter a tap might or might not work, it's worth a shot though.



#17 MorganM

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 04:03 PM

To load test the battery you need yourself a quality battery checker or a lot of battery charging systems have a load test setting. This does more than a typical mulimeter can tell you. You want something that puts a load on the battery and tells you accuratly if its drained or fully charged. See if you can find someone with a load tester of some sort to go down with you and test the battery. If the battery tests out good then give the starter a wack'n!

If your spare tire is still under there its prolly hiding your starter along with a slew of wires and hoses. As noted above follow the main power wire (the big red one!) from your battery down past the distributor and upto the starter motor on your transmission bellhousing. Like I said it might be hard to get in there with a hammer; so slip in a pipe/crowbar/something and put one end right on the starter then whack the other end with a hammer. Not trying to break it here but give it a few good hits to jar the contacts loose. Had to do this many times with old starters prior to replacing them.

#18 eddie6937

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 04:28 PM

All I have to do is tap the starter, and it should start. Am I going to have to get the starter replaced.




To load test the battery you need yourself a quality battery checker or a lot of battery charging systems have a load test setting. This does more than a typical mulimeter can tell you. You want something that puts a load on the battery and tells you accuratly if its drained or fully charged. See if you can find someone with a load tester of some sort to go down with you and test the battery. If the battery tests out good then give the starter a wack'n!

If your spare tire is still under there its prolly hiding your starter along with a slew of wires and hoses. As noted above follow the main power wire (the big red one!) from your battery down past the distributor and upto the starter motor on your transmission bellhousing. Like I said it might be hard to get in there with a hammer; so slip in a pipe/crowbar/something and put one end right on the starter then whack the other end with a hammer. Not trying to break it here but give it a few good hits to jar the contacts loose. Had to do this many times with old starters prior to replacing them.



#19 85Sub4WD

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 04:57 PM

All I have to do is tap the starter, and it should start. Am I going to have to get the starter replaced.

check the skinny wire going to the starter with a test light/multimeter, with one lead on it and the other on chassis ground - if the test light/multimeter indicates power flowing when ig. switch in start, bad starter, if not juice, bad switch

me thinks starter given symptoms - my mom's van would not turn over - harassing the starter with a rather large monkey wrench convinced it otherwise - new/rebuilt starter sounds like a good idea if the starter is the problem - be careful to get a lifetime warrenty on a rebuilt starter (and save the paperwork) - they are not as good as OEM new - mine is 20 years old and still works very well

#20 MorganM

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Posted 28 March 2005 - 05:09 PM

All I have to do is tap the starter, and it should start. Am I going to have to get the starter replaced.


If this is the problem. Soon as you get sick of whacking on it every time you wanna go somewhere you'll replace it :)

Hard to say what the problem is; these are just speculations at the moment.

Good luck!




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