Due to some recent unfortunate events, both my wife and myself got stranded overnight with our vehicles in the recent blizzard that hit the midwest. One vehicle is a 2002 Mercury Mountaineer, the other is a 1999 Saturn. Since then, the Mountaineer hasn't started after I initially had started it to get it home the next day. The Saturn had the same issue, but I pushed it into the garage and put some heaters out. After 2 days it started up and seemed to be fine. Yesterday, I took the Saturn out and left it in a parking lot for about 8 hours (single digit temps, below zero wind chill), and now it won't start again. Both batteries have proper charge on them (checked with volt-meter). When the ignitions on either vehicles are turned, there is only one singular click. It seems as if the starters are seized up. Any ideas?
Based on the recent history, it sounds like there's water in the starter solenoids. That would prevent them from making the heavy contact to send current to the starter motor. Ford is still using their old-style solenoid on the inner fender but it's not performing the solenoid function anymore. It's just used as a regular relay. The actual high-current switching is done by the solenoid on top of the starter motor, just like Chrysler and GM have done forever. I would place a small electric heater under the starters to melt the ice and dry them out.
February, 9, 2011 AT 8:34 PM
So we have two no start's?Have you made sure on both car's that the battery cable's are clean and tight?On the 1999 saturn make sure you have battery voltage to the big red battery cable at the starter and the cable is tight. Just don't check to see if the cable is tight at starter with the battery hooked up. Now with the key in the start position you should have battery voltage at the small purple wire at the starter. If you do bad starter. Now on the Mercury Mountaineer you want battery voltage at the big red battery cable at the starter make sure it's tight.I need the build date on the Mercury Mountaineer to give you further instruction's. On the drivers door you will see a month and year I need to know what yours say's. That way I can get the correct info.
February, 9, 2011 AT 8:41 PM
Thanks for the responses. The Mountaineer was manufactured in 05/01. Also, can either of you indicate to me exactly where the starters on these vehicles are located? I have looked online and didn't have much luck (under the air filter box on the saturn?)
February, 9, 2011 AT 8:44 PM
On the saturn it's under the intake manifold.
February, 9, 2011 AT 8:50 PM
On the Mercury Mountaineer your looking for power at the yellow and light blue wire for battery voltage to it if you have power bad starter. The starter on that one is on the left side of the engine I posted a diagram of where it is.