Starter Not Engaging - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 2nd, 02, 04:36 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 16
I just bought a '67, with a rebuilt 327 and a 350 3-speed automatic trans. It has a new 4 core radiator, fan clutch and thermosat. I have the gauge package, with a temp gauge, but it doesn't show the actual temperature..just "Cold" and "Hot". The temp runs in the middle....creeping slightly higher while sitting still, but still well below the "High" mark. The problem I have is that the starter does not engage when the car is at operating temperature. I get two "clicks", but the starter doesn't crank. If I let the car cool off for 15 minutes or so, it cranks right up. The starter is mounted very close to the engine. Is the heat from the engine causing a problem with the starter or soleniod? Do I have a bad starter or soleniod? Could it be something else? Let me know if you can help. Thanks.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 3rd, 02, 12:49 AM
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Depending on the age of the starter, could be old age.

However, the condition you're describing is known as heat soak. The starter gets hot, expands, and stays stuck until its cooled some.

A couple of fixes are to get a starter heat shield and install around starter, get a solenoid kit from Painless or Summit Racing, or it just may be the battery cables are too small of wire gauge. All of these can be purchased from Summit Racing.

Typically, battery cables should be no smaller than 4 AWG, 2 AWG would be alot better. And, of course, a clean connection at both ends of both cables.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 3rd, 02, 07:04 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply Everett. I think "heat soak" is likely the problem. I will try the heat sheild for the starter. I don't think it has anything to do with the battery cables, but I'll try that if the heat shield doesn't work. Thanks.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 14th, 02, 09:17 AM
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Well....I installed a new starter and solenoid and wrapped it with a heat blanket type of product.

I no longer have the problem with the starter not engaging when the car is hot, now happens at just about anytime, even when it is totally cold.

I turn the key and get a double click and nothing happens. Then after turning the key four or five times it kicks in and starts. Could this be a problem with my ignition?
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 14th, 02, 10:18 AM
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Check all connections especially the inboard wire (towards the block) on the solenoid, this is the starter trip wire. If all okay, try a shim or two, start with one, then go two... the shims should be supplied with the starter, if not, blast down to the parts store and have at it.

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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 14th, 02, 11:40 AM
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I will check the starter wiring and the battery cables again...thanks. What do shims do? The starter is engaging with the flywheel just fine.....when it actually cranks. If the starter was not properly aligned, would it not crank? It seems like I have a problem between the ignition switch and the starter. How can I tell if the starter is getting juice when I turn the key?
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 16th, 02, 10:04 AM Thread Starter
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Ok...I think I have the heat soak problem fixed with the combination of the new starter and the heat shield. Even with the car at a really hot temp., the starter kicks in just fine. I hope this solution holds up.

I still have the intermittent problem with the starter not engaging, but the noise is totally different then before. Now I definitely think it is simply a problem of shimming it correctly. It happens hot or cold, and it can take 3 or 4 turns of the key for the starter to engage, but it always does.

Hopefully I can get it shimmed properly this week and can get down to the beach for the first time in my new convertible. Thank you all for your comments and help.

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