Nippendenso starter and generator. Both are common failure items with real inexpensive fixes. The solenoid contacts in the starter wear. When they make intermittent contact, you'll get a single rather loud clunk from the starter each time you turn the ignition switch to "crank", but it won't spin the engine. If you cycle the switch enough times, it will eventually crank. That can give you many weeks of warning before it fails completely. The contacts can be replaced for 20 bucks, but most people just replace the entire starter. Expect that to happen once or twice in 100,000 miles, depending on how much short trip driving you do.
If you have the Nippendenso generator, the brushes can wear too and cause intermittent charging. That too can go on for weeks before there's a total failure. On many engines, the rear cover can be removed and the brush assembly replaced without removing the generator from the engine. That assembly costs about $15.00.
Tuesday, August 30th, 2011 AT 8:03 PM