Hard starting issue - MustangForums.com


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Old 10-07-2015, 10:37 AM   #1  
Synster
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Default Hard starting issue

First off new to the site. While I'm not an expert in car mechanics I'm fairly good at figuring things out. I'll try and put as much info as I can into this question so hopefully can get a good answer. I have an 87 GT 5 speed. Aside from the normal issue associated with the crappy starter not working when it gets hot I havnt had much issues. About 2-3 weeks ago the car wouldn't even try to crank. Removed the starter and it checked good. Ended up being the solenoid. After I replaced it everything seemed fine. The other day when I went to start it to go to work it acted like a low battery/heat soaked starter. The next day did the same thing although there was also a strange noise like the starter was loose. Made sure the starter bolts were good that night. Next morning it would barely crank over and needed to jump it. Had the battery checked and it was good and fully charged. While doing this noticed that I was quite low on oil. Drained it and filled it up. Tried to start this morning and same thing, barely cranks and made a weird clunk noise. Jumped it and it starts no problem and no noise. Runs fine once its started and no noises from the engine. I have no check engine light, no codes. I have a faint hope that it could be just the low oil and once it gets spread out from going to work it will start fine later today but I'm not sure. Has anyone else experienced anything like this or heard of it. Seems strange that with a good battery it would act like that on start but start and sound normal when I jump it. Any suggestions are appreciated as long as they aren't outrageous ie. "Change the motor". I know its 28 yrs old and I'm working on getting a swap but don't have the time right now. Thanks in advance
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Old 10-07-2015, 04:54 PM   #2  
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OK, if this helps someone to help me here is some more info. Tried to leave work, wouldn't even turn over. Rolled it and started fine that way. Same thing as before, tested the battery and they claim its good. Once its cools off I'll look at some things but after searching for an answer I have a new question. On the fender solenoid, how many wires should be going to the aft connector? From what I've seen there should only be 2 wire terminals there, for some reason the previous owner has 5. Could this be related?
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Old 10-07-2015, 07:40 PM   #3  
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Can't remember exactly how the solenoid is supposed to be as I converted mine to the smaller solenoid on starter style. Where the battery connects to the solenoid should be most of your connections; alt, fuse box etc. The other large post should only have the starter cable as it is only powered when the key is turned to start. These older starters draw a lot of amps and are more prone to heat sink which is why I went later starter.
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Old 10-08-2015, 06:40 AM   #4  
88 orangepeel notch
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Check all cables connections, clean each one to be sure. Then check every inch of both + and - cables for internal corrosion. A coworker of mine just went threw this same thing your describing, and his + cable had a small cut in the insulation down by the starter. Water got inside and went to town, eventually bubbling the area, and limiting current.

If that's all good, I'd investigate that battery. Are the doing a load test on it, or just verifying its over 12 volts with a multimeter?
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Old 10-08-2015, 03:23 PM   #5  
Synster
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Thanks, got blinded and didn't think of the easy obvious. Will check it when I get home/get a chance. Autozone says their tester puts a load on the battery but I trust that little handheld thing about as much as I trust the people working there. They asked what the problem was and when I said it wouldn't start they told me the alternator is probably bad......I'll check the wires, probably replace them anyways since they have probably been in the car since it was built.
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Old 10-12-2015, 07:18 AM   #6  
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Some more questions. I replaced the 4 guage wire going to the starter. Before hooking it up tried to check for voltage. Does it have to be hooked to the starter to complete a circuit? I get voltage to the solenoid but nothing coming off through the cable. It's a brand new solenoid I replaceded yesterday. Also, while checking some other places it seems the battery ground is supposed to go to the block near the oil filter, mine goes to a bracket near the ac compressor? Does it really matter if its still a good ground?
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Old 10-12-2015, 08:09 AM   #7  
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You won't get voltage at the starter until the key is turned to start the car, then the solenoid allows current to flow.

And I'd think that ground should be fine, as long as it's a clean/secure connection. But I'd still go right to the block, just personal preference.
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