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Old 05-31-2002, 11:02 PM   #1
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Car has trouble turning over, can you help me?

Alright, I've notice about every other time I start my car it takes it like 3 seconds or more to turn over. And when it does, it barely turns over, like the instant it turns over the rpms fall low and instantly catch themselves and go up to proper idle. What could it be? I have new battery, plugs, clean tb...I wont rule out the alternator, b/c my orginal died but I got a used one from a junkyard. Would this be a sign of a dying alternator, or maybe a starter? The starter has been replaced and hasnt really made any weird noises. Any ideas? thanks
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Old 06-01-2002, 12:28 AM   #2
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Re: Car has trouble turning over, can you help me?

Quote:
Originally posted by bmxsteve
Alright, I've notice about every other time I start my car it takes it like 3 seconds or more to turn over. And when it does, it barely turns over, like the instant it turns over the rpms fall low and instantly catch themselves and go up to proper idle. What could it be? I have new battery, plugs, clean tb...I wont rule out the alternator, b/c my orginal died but I got a used one from a junkyard. Would this be a sign of a dying alternator, or maybe a starter? The starter has been replaced and hasnt really made any weird noises. Any ideas? thanks
To see if its your alternator, start your car and then pull off the positive terminal on your battery. If it does not run then its your alternator.
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Old 06-01-2002, 06:42 AM   #3
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Re: Car has trouble turning over, can you help me?

A number of people have had problems with the engine coolant temp sensor. You might want to investigate that as a problem for bad starts...
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Old 06-01-2002, 06:54 AM   #4
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Re: Car has trouble turning over, can you help me?

Quote:
Originally posted by bmxsteve
Alright, I've notice about every other time I start my car it takes it like 3 seconds or more to turn over. And when it does, it barely turns over, like the instant it turns over the rpms fall low and instantly catch themselves and go up to proper idle. What could it be? I have new battery, plugs, clean tb...I wont rule out the alternator, b/c my orginal died but I got a used one from a junkyard. Would this be a sign of a dying alternator, or maybe a starter? The starter has been replaced and hasnt really made any weird noises. Any ideas? thanks
Do you mean you turn the key to start, hold it, and three seconds later the engine slowly starts to crank?

Someone mentioned the test for the alternator, which can work, but you could also have the battery and alternator tested for free at most auto parts stores. Even though the starter doesn't make any noise, the solenoid could still be bad and not having it engage when it should.

If the scenario I mentioned in the first paragraph is what happens, I would lean towards a switching problem, like possible in the ignition switch itself or at the other end at the solenoid in the starter. If the engine starts to rotate as soon as you turn the key, especially if it turns slowly, then lights off and idles I would lean towards an electrical problem. You battery might be new, but if the alternator is slowly dying, it will not be recharged as it should and that could lead to your problem.
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Old 06-01-2002, 08:48 AM   #5
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Re: Re: Car has trouble turning over, can you help me?

Quote:
Originally posted by iwannabmw


Do you mean you turn the key to start, hold it, and three seconds later the engine slowly starts to crank?

Someone mentioned the test for the alternator, which can work, but you could also have the battery and alternator tested for free at most auto parts stores. Even though the starter doesn't make any noise, the solenoid could still be bad and not having it engage when it should.

If the scenario I mentioned in the first paragraph is what happens, I would lean towards a switching problem, like possible in the ignition switch itself or at the other end at the solenoid in the starter. If the engine starts to rotate as soon as you turn the key, especially if it turns slowly, then lights off and idles I would lean towards an electrical problem. You battery might be new, but if the alternator is slowly dying, it will not be recharged as it should and that could lead to your problem.
my mom's 95SE is starting to have similar starting problems as well. however something else happens. when i turn the key to start, the lights dim but the starter does not even crank the engine. sometimes it takes more than 5 tries to get it to crank. this happens moreso when the engine is warm. what do you guys think?
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Old 06-01-2002, 02:52 PM   #6
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Re: Re: Re: Car has trouble turning over, can you help me?

Quote:
Originally posted by VQdriver
my mom's 95SE is starting to have similar starting problems as well. however something else happens. when i turn the key to start, the lights dim but the starter does not even crank the engine. sometimes it takes more than 5 tries to get it to crank. this happens moreso when the engine is warm. what do you guys think?
That sounds like the solenoid attached to the side of the starter. Does the car turn over at a normal rate once the starter engages?
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Old 06-01-2002, 06:57 PM   #7
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Car has trouble turning over, can you help me?

Quote:
Originally posted by iwannabmw


That sounds like the solenoid attached to the side of the starter. Does the car turn over at a normal rate once the starter engages?
yes it turns over at a normal rate once the starter engages. my thoughts exactly. sometimes if i turn the key hard and fast it catches and turns over strongly. but for some reason, after driving the car for some miles. i won't turn over in the similar fashion as when cold. sometimes i have to try repeatedly up to 5x.
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Old 06-01-2002, 07:10 PM   #8
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Car has trouble turning over, can you help me?

Quote:
Originally posted by VQdriver
yes it turns over at a normal rate once the starter engages. my thoughts exactly. sometimes if i turn the key hard and fast it catches and turns over strongly. but for some reason, after driving the car for some miles. i won't turn over in the similar fashion as when cold. sometimes i have to try repeatedly up to 5x.
If I had to put money on it, I would go with the solenoid is going bad and doesn't react well to heat, which is why it's worse after being driven. You can either replace the solenoid if you are comfortable disasemmbling the starter itself, or you could just replace the whole thing.
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Old 06-01-2002, 07:10 PM
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