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#695508 - 06/19/09 04:57 PM Car not cranking  
Joined: Jul 2001
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Aerocoupe3 Offline
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Aerocoupe3  Offline
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Weyers Cave, Va
Been trying to figure out my mom's'85 SS for a little while and I think I am down to 2 possibilities.

The car will not crank. It started a couple weeks ago when it would randomly not crank, then randomly start cranking again. All electrical items (windows, radio, lights) work fine. When I turn the key to on, I see the voltage drop like it is trying to start, but there is no crank.

My guesses are either starter, or the ignition switch thing on the column. Any idea which it is, or if it is something else?

Thanks.


My Montes:
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'87 MC SS Aerocoupe
'85 MC SS
'85 MC SC


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#695510 - 06/19/09 04:59 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: Aerocoupe3]  
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tuff57 Offline
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long island, ny
hit the starter with a hammer, or see if the starter selenoid wire is getting power. if the wire's getting power it's the starter if it's not getting power it's either the neutral safety or the ignition switch. it sounds like a starter though. i just put a new one in my monte this week same thing happened stopped cranking

#695525 - 06/19/09 05:45 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: tuff57]  
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Snowboi Offline
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Snowboi  Offline
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Fort Walton Beach, FL
Take the battery out completely, clean the battery connections, then put it back in. Hook it all back up. See if it works then. I had a problem just like that, but it was on a Nissan.

#695527 - 06/19/09 05:51 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: Snowboi]  
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Chevrolord Offline
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Chevrolord  Offline
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West Virginia
While checking the battery terminals, look real close at the plastic coating where it meets the battery. The coating on mine caused intermittent contact, but let the bolt tighten.

Good points above.. starter, solenoid and it's terminals. Last week in here, an SS had the small 'S' terminal loose in the solenoid.

#695541 - 06/19/09 06:42 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: Chevrolord]  
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87SS_inVa Offline
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87SS_inVa  Offline
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Winchester,Virginia
Had the exact same problem on my SS that had been sitting.ended up being the starter.

#695562 - 06/19/09 08:36 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: 87SS_inVa]  
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Aerocoupe3 Offline
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Aerocoupe3  Offline
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Weyers Cave, Va
I'll give the starter a try first. I hate having to work around the motor/exhaust area, no room to get to what I need.


My Montes:
'86 MC SS Aerocoupe
'87 MC SS Aerocoupe
'85 MC SS
'85 MC SC


Member of the VAMCC & SMCC
#695571 - 06/19/09 09:19 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: Aerocoupe3]  
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BADD87SS Offline
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belton, mo
Also make sure the cable going down to the starter is tight on the solenoid.



87 SS/54767 original miles
07 Monte SS
76 Monte triple black 400sb electric sunroof/buckets
86GMC4X4/355/700R4/4.56
#695576 - 06/19/09 09:54 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: Aerocoupe3]  
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Chevrolord Offline
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Chevrolord  Offline
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West Virginia
Watch out for the cheap starters, they're lifetime guaranteed, but the drive clutches last three months. I guess what I'm saying is, they don't mind if you change a starter that often.

Originally Posted By: Aerocoupe3
I'll give the starter a try first. I hate having to work around the motor/exhaust area, no room to get to what I need.


(doing my Maxwell Smart imitation)

Would ya believe... I can change a solenoid without removing the starter?

#695716 - 06/20/09 03:00 AM Re: Car not cranking [Re: Chevrolord]  
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jigsaw Offline
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Laredo TX
Originally Posted By: Chevrolord
Watch out for the cheap starters, they're lifetime guaranteed, but the drive clutches last three months. I guess what I'm saying is, they don't mind if you change a starter that often.


same thing happened to my bro's monte, it stopped cranking, we pulled the starter and checked it outside and it worked put it back in and worked. next day same thing happened so we pulled it out and checked it several times and it worked, put it in and it didn't. so we pulled it out and it worked but since it has lifetime warranty we took it in and got another one and problem solved. not fun removing/installing a full size starter with headers

#695725 - 06/20/09 03:22 AM Re: Car not cranking [Re: jigsaw]  
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Chevrolord Offline
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Chevrolord  Offline
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West Virginia
Originally Posted By: jigsaw
Originally Posted By: Chevrolord
Watch out for the cheap starters, they're lifetime guaranteed, but the drive clutches last three months. I guess what I'm saying is, they don't mind if you change a starter that often.


same thing happened to my bro's monte, it stopped cranking, we pulled the starter and checked it outside and it worked put it back in and worked. next day same thing happened so we pulled it out and checked it several times and it worked, put it in and it didn't. so we pulled it out and it worked but since it has lifetime warranty we took it in and got another one and problem solved. not fun removing/installing a full size starter with headers


My Pontiac failed for the third time in the middle of zero degree winter, so I drove it to work anyway. Always took 29 to 59 attempts to start. The fourth and last time, I walked in and made them give me a drive gear instead of another starter.

Then I emailed the chain store.. They sent me a $50 gift card, I spent it and never went back.

#695742 - 06/20/09 03:43 AM Re: Car not cranking [Re: Chevrolord]  
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GNX89 Offline
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GNX89  Offline
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Los Angeles, Ca
Hate to steal the thread but r u guys talking about autozone starter with the lifetime warranty because i just installed one on tues in mine.

#695829 - 06/20/09 01:46 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: GNX89]  
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jigsaw Offline
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Laredo TX
Originally Posted By: GNX89
Hate to steal the thread but r u guys talking about autozone starter with the lifetime warranty because i just installed one on tues in mine.

yes. would of been the perfect time to upgrade for an lt1 mini starter

#696251 - 06/21/09 06:31 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: jigsaw]  
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ffas23 Offline
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ffas23  Offline
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Somerset, N.J.
First making sure your battery is fully charged and that all connections are good the majority of the time when you turn the key and get nothing I would say you have a bad solenoid on your starter. As someone already mentioned grab yourself a hammer and get under the car with someone inside the car holding the key on trying to start the car as you smack the side of the starter with a hammer. Most of the time your starter will engage now and start your car. At this point you can go out and pick up a new solenoid and give it a try or just replace the whole starter as many do. If you are running headers many have a problem with the heat the headers put out as it does damage to the starter. There are times when a starter will also develope a dead spot inside the main housing with the armature causing the starter to also go bad where replacing just the solenoid will not fix your problem. At that point you have no choice but to replace the whole starter. Over the many years I have rebuilt my own starters and alternators. It doesn't happen that much to me where I have to replace the whole starter but had to recently, finally in my '88LS as I have rebuilt the original starter a couple of times since the car was brand new. It developed a dead spot inside the main housing where I had no choice but to replace it with a rebuilt. I have to say being in the parts business I picked up a (Quality Brand) name rebuilt starter from one of my automotive parts warehouses I deal with that actually was rebuilt to look like new. So far so good with that rebuilt.

Last edited by ffas23; 06/21/09 06:35 PM.
#696327 - 06/21/09 10:09 PM Re: Car not cranking [Re: ffas23]  
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Chevrolord Offline
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Chevrolord  Offline
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West Virginia
Quote:
There are times when a starter will also develope a dead spot inside the main housing with the armature causing the starter to also go bad where replacing just the solenoid will not fix your problem.


That's the time when bumping with a hammer might get it to turn again. But it won't be reliable, especially after the engine is hot, and probably won't turn again.


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