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Old 03-14-2011, 12:36 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Hard to Start: Slow Cranking, then Faster

ok, time to get you experts involved... before I go crazy.

Over the last few months, my daily driver 67 has been becoming more difficult to start. The problem: the starter turns VERY slowly for a few seconds, then speeds up to normal and starts the car. Lately, it has been ocurring more and more often, and the cranking has been getting slower and slower before starting.

Rewind to about 6 months ago:
Same exact symptoms/problem. Eventually, the starter didn't turn at all. Not even a click. The battery checked ok, cleaned the wires, had the starter checked at Napa, put it all together again and everything worked fine for awhile.

Fast forward to yesterday: Replaced the cables and cleaned all connections. The car started normally all day long. Today, it barely turned over, then eventually started. I turned the car off after 5 seconds and tried to start again, and it immediately restarted normally.

Testing and other observations:
Battery is about 14 months old but tested anyway... all is good
Napa starter is about 1 year old, tested good about 6 months ago when this last happened
Napa solenoid is about 6 months old
Battery wires are new
All connections cleaned and re-assembled
Hot or cold engine doesn't seem to be a factor
Outside temp/humidity doesn't seem to be a factor
'Jump-Starting' does not help

ok, let's hear those ideas!

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Old 03-14-2011, 02:03 AM   #2 (permalink)
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umm well how can i expain it. umm of corse the starter will be slow the first couple on seconds because it needs to get the engine up to speed but that sounds like that is not the problem. umm well as far as engine temperature it should be eiser to crank when it gets hot because the bearings expand and dont drag as much and the oil gets thinner. but i am going to go for you have somehow got a bad connection because your CCA Cold Cranking Amps are not high enough that is why it seems like the starter does not have any torque just double check connections.
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Old 03-14-2011, 06:21 AM   #3 (permalink)
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That's a tricky one there! Ok, you checked your connections and should therefore have a good ground. You say hot or cold makes no difference so it's not a heat soak issue. I would have suspected the battery, but you say jumping it makes no difference?! If it were a weak battery jumping should help... unless you jump with another weak battery =)

So the starter checks out as does your battery and cables/connections. That leaves your solenoid.... go get a cheap replacement for about $15 and test it with that.
I would think it highly unlikely that your timing changed to so far advanced that it wont start up anymore? And anyways, with timing it gets worse on a hot engine so lets rule that out too...

--> solenoid.

J

@ Steven65: I use an optima red top with stock starter and my 428 does not need any time to speed up.... the power those batteries deliver is crazy!
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Old 03-14-2011, 06:34 AM   #4 (permalink)
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If it is not your solenoid, check your timing.

Too much advance will cause hard starting, particularly on a warm engine.

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Old 03-14-2011, 08:31 AM   #5 (permalink)
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i go for a dirty connection or a bad ground.
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:59 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I feel you man. My mustang is having issues right now.
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:11 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Yea check cables and cold cranking amps u may need a different battery.
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Use a dielectrec grease on your cable connections too. Timing is a big factor in this situation too.
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:45 AM   #9 (permalink)
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You need to perform a starter draw test. It will show how many amps the starter is pulling. Usually over 200 amps indicates the starter is the culprit. I suspect that you would see around three hundred when it is slow and 175 when it cranks normally. A vat 40 is an excellent tool but very expensive so you would need to go to a shop. Otherwise an inductive pickup with a quality DVOM (digital volt ohm meter) can be used. Only drawback to using the DVOM is that it is harder to watch the spikes compared to an analog unit like the vat40.

You need to be certain about your grounds and cables to the starter. Perform drop tests and resistance tests with a DVOM.

Last edited by just one; 03-14-2011 at 09:48 AM.
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Old 03-14-2011, 06:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I may have gotten ahead of myself. Sometimes it takes 'talking about it' before the stupid obvious stuff becomes clear.... after looking under the hood again this afternoon I can see that 2 positive battery cables have been replaced, but the neg cable to the block has not. In fact, the neg connection to the block has not been checked at all. It will be the weekend before I can jack it up and clean/replace.

MAYBE it will be that simple
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Old 03-15-2011, 02:30 AM   #11 (permalink)
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about the starting the engine slow at first then fast like i said you have low amps no power. that is why the starter cranks then gets the engine up to about 200 then the rest is easy for it. and why does it start slowly at first? well their is the cranking amps then their are basic physics properties inertia and mass.
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Old 03-15-2011, 06:05 AM   #12 (permalink)
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definitely check the ground and think about replacing it with a fresh cable. Copper wire can corrode where you can't see it. Clean up the contact surfaces in any case.
If you have a multimeter compare the ohm values with an equal length, equal gage cable. What gauge is your ground cable? Is it the stock 40 year old piece? I switched all my battery and ground connections for a larger gauge. I believe it's 0 or maybe 2 gauge....
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Old 03-15-2011, 09:20 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Hi torque mini starter. About $70 from DB electrical. Don't bother messing with that old reman junk starter.
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Old 03-15-2011, 09:04 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gaertner_jan View Post
definitely check the ground and think about replacing it with a fresh cable. Copper wire can corrode where you can't see it. Clean up the contact surfaces in any case.
If you have a multimeter compare the ohm values with an equal length, equal gage cable. What gauge is your ground cable? Is it the stock 40 year old piece? I switched all my battery and ground connections for a larger gauge. I believe it's 0 or maybe 2 gauge....

I just bought the new cable today. I don't know the gauge of the old one, but the new one is bigger.
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Old 03-16-2011, 07:56 PM   #15 (permalink)
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This car is now well grounded. It easily started right up, which it sometimes does on the first try. Over the next few days I'll know for sure if this cured the problem.


Re: Battery... I tested it again today... all is well with the battery and charging system. It's 335amps(load) with 675 CCA. Good-n-Plenty, I think, so an under-rated battery isn't the issue.
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