Wonderful news. Don't feel too bad about buying the starter. It is a common failure item, even though it has an easy fix, so now you won't have to worry about it for a few years. Everyone who suggested it was defective would normally have been right. Corroded battery cables and clamps are much less common but they can cause similar symptoms.
My daily driver is a rusty trusty '88 Grand Caravan. It had a different style starter, but I installed that little silver Nippendenso starter on it many years ago after a student accidentally broke the original one. It bolted right up and has been working fine but I have a spare replacement ready to go when needed.
Just so you're aware, when those solenoid contacts become worn, you'll get one loud clunk from it each time you turn the ignition switch to "crank", but it won't spin the engine, however, it WILL work if you cycle the switch a few times. One of the parts that wears turns a little each time you release the switch. When a good spot comes around, it will crank the engine. That can go on for months. It won't suddenly let you sit. When that happened on my ******'s '95 Grand Caravan, I ignored it for so long, one day she lost count after 700 attempts and a blister on her thumb, but it did finally start. As I recall, on your van, you can only try it three times, then the Engine Computer will prevent the system from working again until you wait half a minute or so.
Thursday, September 22nd, 2011 AT 4:56 AM