Mechanics

FORD THUNDERBIRD STARTER PROBLEM

1997 Ford Thunderbird • 230,000 miles

I was driving and the engine stalled. I tried to restart it and I smelled burning wires and the starter would not turn over. Could I have a shorted starter motor?
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Guest
November 27, 2012.



MAY HAVE LOST A GOOD GROUND TO THE ENGINETHE STARTER WOULD THEN "SEEK GROUND" THRU ANY OTHER SMALLER WIRE THAT WINDS BACK UP AT THE NEGATIVE BATTERY TERMINAL

I'VE SEEN THIS HAPPEN WITH A BATTERY CLAMP THAT "SQUEEZES" THE CABLE----THE "SQUEEZE" FAILED DUE TO CORROSION (RENDERING THE BIG CABLE USELESS)

HOWEVER, THE SMALLER GROUND WIRE TO THE BODY WAS HOOKED TO THE BOLT FOR THE "SQUEEZER"----IT STILL HAD A GOOD GROUND! (IS TOO SMALL TO HANDLE STARTER AMPERAGE)

SO WHEN THE STARTER WAS "CALLED UPON"----IT HAD A GREAT POSITIVE FEED!

IN ORDER TO FIND A GROUND IT "LOOKED FOR IT" THRU ANY METAL TO METAL OR WIRE THAT WENT FROM THE ENGINE TO THE BODY---THEN THRU THE BODY TO "THE WIRE"---THE ONLY WIRE TO THE NEGATIVE TERMINAL

ANYTHING ALONG THAT PATH---THAT WAS TOO SMALL TO HANDLE THE AMPS---GETS "SMOKED"

IT WOULD NORMALLY SEND POSITIVE TO STARTER THRU THE BIG POSITIVE CABLE---STARTER GROUNDS TO ENGINE---BIG GROUND CABLE (IN GOOD SHAPE) ATTACHED TO THE ENGINE WOULD TAKE THE LOAD BACK TO THE BATTERY

REMOVE THE BATTERY CABLES---AT LEAST ONE OF THEM

I WOULD HAVE THIS TESTED BY A QUALIFIED PERSON

ONE MORE TURN OF THE KEY ----COULD QUITE POSSIBLY SET A WIRE HARNESS ON FIRE---THEN YOUR CAR----I'VE SEEN THIS HAPPEN A FEW TIMESNOT A WRENCH ONE, HANDY TO TAKE THE BATTERY LOOSE---ONES IT FLAMES UP, IT'S KINDA HARD TO MAKE IT STOP!

I HOPE MY "SCARE" REALLY ISN'T WHAT HAS HAPPENED---MAYBE IT'S AS SIMPLE AS YOU 1ST SAID--A SMOKED STARTER----PLAY IT SAFE AND HAVE SOMEONE REALLY QUALIFIED, OTHER THAN THE CONVENIENCE STORE CLERK, LOOK AT IT

THE MEDIC

Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
Nov 28, 2012.