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 Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?

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PostSubject: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 4:02 pm

Okay I'm stumped.

Battery is a BRAND NEW 34/78 Optima red top.
Battery cables are brand new 1/0 AWG that I made.
Alternator tested as good.
Volt meter shows about 14-15 volts (is this too high?)
Car... starts.

Sometimes.


Somebody suggested that it may be because of my exhaust? Like the headers are making it too hot down by the starter causing it to do nothing? I turn the key, it clicks once then nothing. Then other times it fires right up.

Is my starter going out? Am I crazy? Do I need to insulate the starter and headers somehow? Other ideas?
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silverfox103
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 5:02 pm

Click usually means starter solenoid. Make sure you have good connections.

Tom
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jayoldschool

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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 5:02 pm

Classic symptoms of a bad battery cable connection. Disconnect, clean, lube, reconnect everything. Suspect homemade cable connections, too. Volt meter on the CAR reads 15V? Means nothing. Digital voltmeter in your HAND measuring battery voltage (or charging voltage), that means something. Keep that red top charged up, it's junk if if it discharges.
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200OZ
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 5:08 pm

Yeah, crappy cable more than likely....
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 5:19 pm

I'll check the connections at the starter, then.

I KNOW the connections are good. I soldered them all myself with a torch, and they're SOLID.
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lakeffect
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 8:07 pm

Stingroo wrote:
 Car... starts.  Sometimes.
When?  Only in the morning when everything is cold?   How about after you drove to the store. Did it start or is that when the problem occurs?


Stingroo wrote:
Somebody suggested that it may be because of my exhaust? Like the headers are making it too hot down by the starter causing it to do nothing? I turn the key, it clicks once then nothing. Then other times it fires right up.
Is the starter grinding away but no fire in the hole?

If it won't crank, then I'd bet on the Solenoid. There are heat shields available that will help (Summit racing) Adding tape is a temp fix, as it fails after a year or two.

If it cranks but won't fire, I'd bet on the heat soaked ignition module. They will test OK at the store,but get them up to underhood temps after you shut a engine off, no air flow, and they get fried under the cowl.

From my own personal experience, heat soak of the ignition module occurs easily on our cars. Partially due to the long overhang of the cowl, and provoked by high temps from adding  header.

 I cured mine by isolating the module out of the  distributor to the fender well.


Dave
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 8:30 pm

Jay won the Internet.


The nut was a little loose on the positive wire going to the starter. D'oh.
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jayoldschool

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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 9:54 pm

Second one this week...
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 10:12 pm

Haha. Good work.

Yeah the cables are awesome. I spent time on those suckers.
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lakeffect
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 10:45 pm

Crap , I took the Vegas "under" ( under the cowl) and lost again.
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 11:05 pm

I noticed there was no heat shield on the starter, though. I have shorty headers. I mean, I've owned the car like this for almost 4 years now, so I guess that's not a problem.

Didn't know they made shields just for this. I learned something new anyway.
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lakeffect
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeWed Aug 21, 2013 11:13 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]


There are several heat shields on the site, one of them at that link.
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitimeThu Aug 22, 2013 9:08 am

Ah. That's cool.

Alright, put a washer between the terminal and the nut to get a tighter fit (I guess I lost one? It was all the way snugged down)


It lives.

Next up... front suspension. Looked at the inside of the RF tire while I was under there. Yikes! Labor day weekend suspension thrash, methinks. lol
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PostSubject: Re: Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine?   Car sometimes won't start? Starter, battery, alternator seem fine? Icon_minitime

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