Jump to content


Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, my lurker friend!

Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, an unparalleled Subaru community full of the greatest Subaru gurus and modders on the planet! We offer technical information and discussion about all things Subaru, the best and most popular all wheel drive vehicles ever created.

We offer all this information for free to everyone, even lurkers like you! All we ask in return is that you sign up and give back some of what you get out - without our awesome registered users none of this would be possible! Plus, you get way more great stuff as a member! Lurk to lose, participate to WIN*!
  • Say hello and join the conversation
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get automatic updates
  • Get your own profile and make new friends
  • Classifieds with all sorts of Subaru goodies
  • Photo hosting in our gallery
  • Meet other cool people with cool cars
Seriously, what are you waiting for? Make your life more fulfilling and join today! You and your Subaru won't regret it, we guarantee** it.

* The joy of participation and being generally awesome constitutes winning
** Not an actual guarantee, but seriously, you probably won't regret it!

Serving the Subaru Community since May 18th, 1998!

Guest Message by DevFuse
 

Photo
- - - - -

Problem with relays in starter circuit?


  • Please log in to reply
8 replies to this topic

#1 RodA2003

RodA2003

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 32 posts
  • CA, USA

Posted 23 September 2005 - 07:33 PM

My 97 OB is dificult ot start sometimes. Symptom is that turning the key fully clockwise sometimes takes several seconds to get the starter motor turning, and sometimes it fails entirely. I thought it must be worn contacts in the ignition switch, or a bad relay in the starting circuit. I assume that it's not the starter itself, as connecting a wire from the battery to the solenoid on the starter always starts it immediately.

The several seconds of delay is always worse after the car has been unused for some time. Recently it consistently failed to start, so I disabled parts of the wiring until I found the relay under the dash, right under the glovebox. At this point I had the starter disconnected, and I could hear the relay when I tried to start. With the starter connected, it still failed to start. I cleaned the contacts, and it started immediately. I replaced it with a new Subaru relay several days ago, but since then the delay has grown again, until today it failed altogether, and I had to hot wire the starter.

Does all this mean it must be worn contacts in the ignition switch? The switch module looks pretty hard to take apart.

Rod

#2 nipper

nipper

    Semi Elite Master of the

  • Members
  • 17,949 posts
  • Long Island NY

Posted 23 September 2005 - 07:50 PM

Ok start with the simple things. Inspect the battery terminals, starter terminals and battery cables. Battery cables do go bad with time. I have never heard of a sooby ignition switch going bad, Ford yes...
Relays have a range of voltage that they pull in at, usually staring at about 8 volts. Since you know which terminals are which, use a volt meter and see what the voltages are at the relay coil.
According to my trusty manual there is a starter interlock relay only if you have a stick. Also it could be a bad neutral saftey switch.
When it tires to start, is there a delay then it cranks normally, or does it crank slowly. By directly jumping the starter, you are also bypassing the battery cable.
There are a bunch of relays that energize when the car is in the on position. I dont think that relay has anything to do with it. Check the nattery cable. The very last thing to look at is the ignition switch.
Go to the "get it while its hot" post, the wiring diagram for the starter curcuit is there.
Sounds like it may be a weak starter winding, but cant tell from here.

Joe

#3 RodA2003

RodA2003

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 32 posts
  • CA, USA

Posted 23 September 2005 - 08:04 PM

Pretty sure it's not the starter. I replaced that earlier to no effect. When it does start, it always cranks at full speed. Don't think it's a battery or cable problem. A new battery recently had no effect. When I hot wire the starter, I connect the + battery post to the solenoid relay - starter is getting its power through the regular high current wire, which is always connected. So I am not bypassing the battery cable.

Car has AT, so maybe it is the interlock switch for detecting the park/neutral position?

Rod

#4 nipper

nipper

    Semi Elite Master of the

  • Members
  • 17,949 posts
  • Long Island NY

Posted 23 September 2005 - 08:14 PM

Next time it happens, put the car in neutral. Usually even a bad switch is more forgiving in neutral then it in park. you really need to go over everything with a volt meter. Even if it is a waste of money, I would replace the battery cables befor i dug into the igntion switch as a last resort. Battery cables can do odd things. And also there are such things as bad "new" starters. Do you have a battery load tester. Usually they can show the volt drop when cranking.


Joe

#5 RodA2003

RodA2003

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 32 posts
  • CA, USA

Posted 23 September 2005 - 08:54 PM

Next time it happens, put the car in neutral.
Joe


Thanks for the tip. I'll try that next time and report back.

Rod

#6 RodA2003

RodA2003

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 32 posts
  • CA, USA

Posted 26 September 2005 - 01:04 PM

Well it would not start with the key a couple od days ago, and fiddling with the shift lever had no effect. I repeatedly tried jiggling it between park and neutral, but no joy. I could hear the new starter relay under glovebox click, and the starter solenoid click too, but the starter failed to turn. Connecting the soledoid to the battery worked though, with the starter spinning at full speed.

Any ideas?

Rod

#7 color-blind

color-blind

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 89 posts
  • Seattle

Posted 26 September 2005 - 01:36 PM

Well it would not start with the key a couple od days ago, and fiddling with the shift lever had no effect. I repeatedly tried jiggling it between park and neutral, but no joy. I could hear the new starter relay under glovebox click, and the starter solenoid click too, but the starter failed to turn. Connecting the soledoid to the battery worked though, with the starter spinning at full speed.

Any ideas?

Rod


You are experiencing a voltage drop to the starter. The simple fix is to add in an additional power source thru a relay. Vw had this problem for years. You can purchase an add on starter relay kit that will take care of your problems. The part number is WR1- made by Bosch. Good luck.

#8 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 5,430 posts
  • Texas

Posted 26 September 2005 - 02:31 PM

Maybe a 'grounding kit' or go through and thoroughly clean and reconnect all the grounds you can find?


I dunno.

#9 nipper

nipper

    Semi Elite Master of the

  • Members
  • 17,949 posts
  • Long Island NY

Posted 26 September 2005 - 02:58 PM

Check your negative battery cable at the battery and where it terminates.

Clean your battery posts and cable ends., and make sure your posts have 100% contact with the battery. This is sounding more and more liks a bad battery cable or dirty cable connection

nipper




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users