Your vehicle's starter has the job of turning the engine, which will then tell the engine control module to provide a spark and fuel so the combustion process can begin. The starter is located under the hood near the flex plate of the engine or the flywheel. Here is what you need to know about how to tell if the starter of your vehicle is going bad and needs to be repaired or replaced.
The Vehicle Doesn't Crank Or Start
One common problem related to a damaged starter is that the vehicle will not start. You will put the key in the ignition to start the vehicle, and the engine will not crank or start as a result. This could be due to an internal electrical issue with the solenoid where it is not providing electricity.
However, problems with the starter can also be caused by the brushes within the starter being worn out. If this is the case, it will not allow currents to pass through the commutator. Sometimes a mechanic will troubleshoot this problem by hitting the starter with a dead blow hammer, which can get those brushes moving again so that they come in contact with the commutator. This could give the contact that the brushes need to get the car started, which narrows down the issue to the brushes.
The Vehicle Cranks Slowly And Starts
If the vehicle cranks very slowly when starting up the car, and it still starts, this could also be a problem due to those brushes. The brushes may have poor contact but still have enough contact to turn the engine and get the vehicle running. The starter may eventually get to a point where the vehicle doesn't crank or start at all if you are experiencing this problem.
The Vehicle Makes A Clicking Sound When Starting
You may go to start your vehicle, but you only hear the engine make clicking sounds when doing so. This problem is related to the solenoid trying to activate the plunger within the part, which moves the pinion gear outward to come in contact with the flywheel. An electrical issue within the starter can cause this to happen.
The Vehicle Makes A Grinding Noise When Cranking
Pay attention to the noises that your vehicle makes when you crank your engine. If there is a grinding sound, this is due to the pinion gear being damaged. It tends to make a grinding sound when it makes improper contact with the flexplate or flywheel.
For more information, contact an auto repair company in your area.