What To Check Before Replacing Starter?

What To Check Before Replacing Starter?, <h1>What To Check Before Replacing Starter</h1> <h2>Introduction</h2> <p> Before you decide to, blog, what-to-check-before-replacing-starter, KampionLite

What To Check Before Replacing Starter


Before you decide to replace your starter, it’s important to make sure that it is indeed the source of the problem. The starter motor is responsible for starting the engine by turning the engine flywheel. When it fails, the engine won’t start, or it may make strange noises. However, there are a few things that you should check before jumping to conclusions and replacing the starter. In this article, we will discuss the essential checks that need to be done before replacing the starter.

1. Battery

The first thing you should check is the battery. A weak or dead battery can often mimic the symptoms of a bad starter. Ensure that the battery is fully charged and capable of delivering the required power to start the engine. Use a multimeter to measure the voltage across the battery terminals. A healthy battery should have a voltage reading between 12.4-12.6 volts. If it’s significantly lower, the battery may need to be charged or replaced.

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Points to consider:

  1. Check for corrosion or loose connections at the battery terminals.
  2. If the battery voltage is low, try jump-starting the vehicle and see if it starts.
  3. If the battery voltage is within the normal range, proceed to the next check.

2. Starter Solenoid

The starter solenoid plays a vital role in starting the engine. It is responsible for engaging the starter motor with the flywheel and also acts as a relay for the large current required by the starter motor. To check the solenoid, you can perform a simple test using a multimeter. Set the multimeter to the resistance mode and measure the resistance between the positive terminal of the solenoid and its case. If there is no resistance or a very high resistance, the solenoid may be faulty.

Points to consider:

  1. Inspect the wiring connections at the solenoid for any signs of damage or corrosion.
  2. If the solenoid is faulty, replacing it may solve the issue without the need to replace the entire starter.
  3. If the solenoid checks out fine, move on to the next step.

3. Ignition Switch

The ignition switch is another component that can cause starting issues if it becomes faulty. The ignition switch is responsible for sending power to the starter solenoid and the rest of the electrical system in the vehicle. To check the ignition switch, you can perform a continuity test using a multimeter. Disconnect the wires from the ignition switch and set the multimeter to the continuity mode. Touch the meter probes to the appropriate terminals and see if there is continuity. If there is no continuity or intermittent continuity, the ignition switch may need to be replaced.

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Points to consider:

  1. If you suspect an issue with the ignition switch, check if the dashboard lights and other electrical systems are functioning properly.
  2. Sometimes, jiggling the key in the ignition or moving the steering wheel can temporarily fix the problem, indicating a faulty ignition switch.
  3. If the ignition switch is working fine, continue to the next check.

4. Starter Motor

Now that you have checked the battery, solenoid, and ignition switch, it’s time to inspect the starter motor itself. The starter motor can develop issues over time, such as worn-out brushes, a faulty armature, or a seized rotor. To check the starter motor, you can perform a bench test. Disconnect the starter motor from the vehicle and connect it directly to a fully charged battery using jumper cables. Listen for any strange noises and observe if the motor spins freely without any resistance. If the motor fails to spin or makes unusual noises, it may indicate a problem with the starter motor.

Points to consider:

  1. Inspect the wiring connections on the starter motor for any signs of damage or corrosion.
  2. Consider checking the starter relay if your vehicle has one, as it can also cause starting issues.
  3. If the starter motor is found to be faulty, it needs to be replaced.
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5. Other Factors to Consider

Sometimes, other factors might be causing starting issues that are often mistaken for a bad starter. Here are a few additional points to consider before replacing the starter:

Points to consider:

  1. Check the fuel system to ensure that the engine is receiving fuel.
  2. Inspect the spark plugs and ignition system to make sure there is proper spark.
  3. Verify that the engine is not seized by manually rotating the crankshaft or using a socket and a breaker bar.
  4. If you have tried all the checks mentioned above and still cannot identify the issue, it may be best to consult a professional mechanic who can diagnose the problem accurately.


Replacing a starter can be a costly and time-consuming process. Therefore, it is essential to perform thorough checks before concluding that the starter needs replacement. By inspecting the battery, solenoid, ignition switch, starter motor, and considering other factors that could cause starting issues, you can accurately diagnose and fix the problem without unnecessary expenses. Remember, a systematic approach will save you time and money in the long run.



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