1999 Plymouth Voyager Starting problem

Tiny
RMCGLOTHLEN
  • MEMBER
  • 1999 PLYMOUTH VOYAGER
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 166,000 MILES
My Voyager has a hard time starting when it's cold and has been sitting for a couple of hours. When I turn the key I can her whirring like there is something working, but it doesn't start. The radio and electrical stuff will come on so I really don't think it's the battery. After I try a couple of time it will start. Oddly enough I noticed that when this problem started if I'd release the e brake it would start up, but maybe that was coincidence. If I've been driving it for a bit and run into the store or something, it will start up fine for me when I come out. I'm really hoping it isn't the starter because Firestone will charge me around $400 to fix it if that's case.
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Friday, May 15th, 2009 AT 12:57 PM

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Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
When it doesn't start, you hear a whining. Does it sound like the engine is being turned over or like an electric motor spining with no resistance?
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Monday, May 25th, 2009 AT 8:24 PM
Tiny
RMCGLOTHLEN
  • MEMBER
It sounds more like an electric motor spining with no resistance. We also have tried getting a new battery because the mechanic at our local Midas shop said that was the probable cause. $175 later it's still going on. Also, Firestone did some rewiring type work on our spark plugs and things about a week before this started happening.
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Tuesday, May 26th, 2009 AT 1:25 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
It sounds like the solenoid on the starter is not engaging. The solenoid kicks a gear out which engages to the engine's flywheel thus spinning the engine to start it. If it doesn't kick the gear out, you will hear the starter spinning but not engaging with the engine.

I would remove the starter, take it to a parts store, and have them bench test it to see if that is what is happening. Most will do it for free, so there is no money out of pocket. If I'm correct, you need to replace the starter.

Let me know if you have other questions.
Joe
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Tuesday, May 26th, 2009 AT 1:45 PM

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