How to Replace Your Starter On Your Own But Go Through This Checklist Beforehand To Save Money
A starter motor is essential for starting your car’s engine. Thus, if your car’s starter motor is experiencing a problem, diagnosing it is vital.
The ability to diagnose problems on your own can save you money on costly repairs and checkups. Furthermore, let’s also discuss how to replace the starter motor as a DIY project.
Normally, no warning lights appear in the instrument cluster when there is a problem with the starter. The only way to tell if something is wrong is if the engine does not start even after cranking it. In such a case, you will hear a clicking sound and that’s all.
However, the same clicking sound can be heard when the car’s battery is dead and you attempt to start the engine.
Similarly, the car simply refuses to turn on in the following situations as well:
The anti-theft immobilizer isn’t working properly;
Faulty neutral safety switch;
A blown relay or fuse.
So, before you go out and just order a new starter motor, go through this checklist step by step to ensure you address the problem correctly.
Check the battery
This one is simple. All you need to do is check whether or not the battery has gone faulty.
You can use a digital multimeter for this purpose. Choose the 20V DC option and connect the two leads of the multimeter to the battery terminals. If the battery is generating over 12.2 Volts, it is working fine and you can proceed to the next step.
Getting a load tester is another great way to put some load on your battery. This ensures that the battery is performing as it should.
A properly functioning battery does not mean that the car will start. Thus the next step is to check that the battery terminals are properly connected.
Also, ensure that the terminals don’t have any corrosion on them. You can use sandpaper for removing the corrosion. A 200 grit sandpaper is perfect for this purpose.
A quick note here is that upon cranking if you hear a rapid clicking sound, this indicates a dead battery.
Faulty Antitheft System
For checking if the faulty antitheft system is keeping your car from starting, look for the Immobilizer sign in the instrument cluster.
If it disappears after a while, the antitheft system of the car is working properly and you need to proceed further.
Neutral Safety Switch
If you fail to shift the gear all the way to Park or Neutral while parking an automatic vehicle, the neutral safety system engages and prevents the vehicle from starting.
This is not a common issue because very few people make this mistake. Still, it’s a good idea to go through this checklist so that if you make a minor error like this one, it doesn’t end up costing you a large sum of money.
Fuses & Relays
Check that the fuses and the starter relay. In case they have undergone some sort of a fault, the vehicle won’t be able to start.
If the relay is good, it will produce a clicking sound when the vehicle is turned on. If the clicking sound is missing, it means the starter relay needs to be replaced.
Now you’ve checked all the common problems. If even after all this, the car doesn’t start, it means that the starter motor is faulty.
Good old school practice is to give a solid nudge to the starter motor with a hammer when you crank the engine. You might need to do this several times to get going.
If the vehicle starts after this, you know that it actually is the starter that needs replacement.
How To Locate The Starter Motor?
Starters can be found in a variety of locations within the engine bays of various vehicles. It is critical to know the exact location of the starter. You can easily locate it by searching the layout of your specific vehicle on the internet.
An easy way of finding the starter is to look for the spot where the engine meets the transmission. The starter is present in the vicinity of this section.
Most starters can be easily accessed from the bottom end of the engine bay. Thus, usually, the first step for replacing the starter motor is to simply jack up the vehicle.
What Tools Do You Need?
The process of replacing the starter motor is fairly easy. Here are some of the tools that you’ll need for this purpose:
Socket set with extensions;
Ratchet with a swivel head;
Steps For Replacing The Starter Motor
Perform the following steps in the mentioned order for replacing the starter motor:
Disconnect the negative terminal of the battery to ensure that no current is flowing through the parts;
Remove the starter bolts one by one but be sure to physically support the starter before removing the last bolt. Otherwise, it will fall and can injure anyone located below the part;
If you are doing this for the first time, it’s always a good idea to take a picture of the wires before disconnecting them. This way you know where to connect each wire after fitting the new part.
Recheck The Starter’s Cable Connections
An important point to note here is that the starter might be working fine and just the connections might be bad. In this case, remove any corrosion and then retest the part.
This can save you a lot of money because if a mechanic has come this far, he won’t always be inclined to say that the part is working well.
This knowledge can therefore help you save a substantial amount of money and reuse a part that can still last several years.
Choose High-Quality Starters From UNITECH
However, if the starter is faulty, get a new one from a renowned source like UNITECH.
UNITECH starter motors are special because they go through strict quality control checks before making their way to the customers.
Click here to get yourself a high-quality starter motor from UNITECH.
After replacing the part and rewiring and rebolting it, start the vehicle and it should be good to go.
Why Is This Information Vital For You?
You might not be interested in changing the starter on your own. However, having all this knowledge ensures that your local mechanic won’t be able to trick you.
Besides this, you can check all the common problems on your own and be certain that the starter motor is the one that needs replacement.
So, good luck with your future project, and happy saving with UNITECH’s premium parts.