Mechanics

- ALL OF A SUDDEN, WILL NOT START

1987 Chevrolet Corvette

Never a problem starting before - put key in ignition, turned on to start - nothing - no clicking - dead silence. Replaced battery. All dash lights work, headlights turn on. Normally this is due to Vehicle Anti-Theft system (so I'm told 95% of time). I ordered a VATS bypass switch from Ecklers - installed it - still the same problem - won't start. Is it ECM? Or. What is the next step to do and/or check?
AD
Avatar
Don2572
March 2, 2007.



Have you checked to see if you are getting juice to the starter.

M_H_RITZEL
Mar 2, 2007.
I have the same problem with my 88 Vette. I have installed the bypass switch and even added an indicator light to confirm power to selenoid terminal on starter. I only get a selenoid click. No armature spin. This is the second rebuild starter in one year. Car has just over 80,000 miles. Checked battery, 12.3 volts.

What is the small red 12 gage wire for, that is also on the battery terminal on the starter?

Any one got any ideas?

Tiny
Rmcraftv8
Jun 11, 2007.
If you hear the solenoid clicking then it is getting voltage from the ignition. Check to make sure you are getting voltage from the battery. If you are then the problem is in the starter. Sometimes the brushes get dirty and do not make contact with the armiture. Bench test the starter. The brushes can be cleaned and replaced if needed. It is somewhat hard if one does not know how to do it.
AD

M_H_RITZEL
Jun 11, 2007.
I understand about cleaning amature and brushes. The first remanufactured starter (2006) worked great for the first 6 months, then this problem appeared. I assumed that I had purchased a defective starter. Just two weeks ago, I installed the second remanufactured starter and it worked until yesterday and the same old problem.

I'm starting to wonder if I am missing a ground strap from the engine back to the battery?

What is that red 12 gage wire that is connected on the same terminal as the battery main cable?

Tiny
Rmcraftv8
Jun 11, 2007.
Check for corresion on the negative side of the battery and follow it down to the engine block, the red wire 12 guage is the charging wire it runs from the altinator and when running charges the batery. On newer cars they are connected near the batery itself. When you had put a starter in the car it started all right for a while then the problem happened and with changing starters it stopped for a while, that tends me to believe it is in the starter.

M_H_RITZEL
Jun 11, 2007.
Thanks for the info,

I will check grounds first, (at this point even concidering adding a dedicated ground from one of the starter mounting bolts to the negitive terminal on the battery).I will also check voltage on amature terminal to see if its the same as the battery.

I'm not that experianced with remanufactured parts, is the defective rate that high, that I got two defective Starter/Selenoid units?

With all the work involved getting the starter out of the car (flat backing it) I'm thinking if this starter needs to be changed again, I should start looking for a new part.

Tiny
Rmcraftv8
Jun 11, 2007.
You can get a new starter but I would have the starter on the car checked, to see if there is anything wrong with it. If you have a electrical shop any where around have the starter checked for voltage draw. Some engines if they have been worked on{ beefed up} might have to have a high torque starter. The high torque starter givers out more power to turn the engine over better.

M_H_RITZEL
Jun 11, 2007.
Thanks for the info.
As far as I know this is a stock L98 engine.
I am going to do the ground wire first and evaluate results.
If car doesn't start, then I will try bumping starter housing with a rubber hammer, if there is something wrong with the brushes, I have seen in the past, that this would confirm poor contact. I understand that this style of starter may have porcelein guides and that bumping housing is not recomended, but at this point I am afraid to take the car anywhere or worse be stuck in traffic, so I will try all tests to define and correct this problem.

If I wanted to install a new higher torque starter, (just for piece of mind), how would I go about finding one (NAPA, a speed shop, Midstate Corvette, Ecklars)?

Tiny
Rmcraftv8
Jun 12, 2007.
M_J_ here is the update on this issue.
The ground wire (adding) had no effect.
So I ruled out poor grounding.

BUT! After bumping the starter armature housing with a rubber hammer, when I turned the key, the car started right up.

SO.I will be removing this starter and taking it back to the parts store for the next contestant.

Thank you for helping me getting this weekend toy back on the road.

Tiny
Rmcraftv8
Jun 14, 2007.
You can buy a high torque starter at a number of places. They are expensive. Looked up one in jc whitney and they wanted 250. You can go non line to summit racing and see what they have. Glad you found the problem : D : D

M_H_RITZEL
Jun 14, 2007.

AD