Question about 1998 Ford Contour

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Starter spins but wont engage flywheel

Sounds like solenoid in older cars when it does not push stareter gear into flywheel. vehicle is 97 contour v6 manual trans. engine bump starts easily and runs normally.

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  • Anonymous Mar 21, 2014

    replaced starter it worked now it just spins and doesn't engage flywheel

  • Anonymous Mar 29, 2014

    once the starter engages with the flywheel and the vehucle starts, the bendix gear won't retract from the flywheel. It stays engaged.

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If you throw booser cables on does the car start ? If it doesnt then its time to replace your starter and relay.

Posted on Dec 16, 2008

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I got a 1998 nissan maxima se 3.0L wont start ive put new starter, solenoid, relays, and ignition sw.I used to jump solenoid now dont work just starter spins never engaging help


If the starter is working probably and is mounted correctly then you need to look at the flywheel. Sounds like teeth may be missing. The gear on the starter should move forward and turn. The forward motion allows the teeth on the starter gear to connect with the teeth on the flywheel.

Jul 18, 2016 | Nissan Cars & Trucks

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Why does my starter engage for only a second, then spin freely after that. it was removed and tested at Autozone and passed. The starter stayed engaged during the test when no load was encountered.


Hi Anonymous

What I believe you've said is that you turn the key to start, the engine turns over for a second, then you just hear the starter spinning but no engine turn over. Yes?

Then you took it to Autozone and tested it and it stayed engaged during the test. The differences, possible or real here, are the load on the starter gear end, and the electricity driving it.

There are a couple things happening in the start cycle. The motor starts spinning and the solenoid pushes the spinning gear forward to engage the toothed edge of the flywheel. If the solenoid doesn't push enough, the gear won't engage. So, one thought is that there's an issue with the solenoid - it may push the gear out just fine, but lack power to keep it pressed forward if there is back-force from the engine.

If you have a poor connection to the battery, the solenoid may not draw the current to keep the gear engaged. Checking the hot (red) wire both at the battery and where it attaches to the starter is the primary diagnostic there. Even if the battery has a good charge, the current draw if starting is the heaviest load it encounters in a typical day of driving, so the ability of the battery to dump that charge quickly in a pulse of high current is also important, and non-corroded, tightly connected wires help.

The starter gear also has a clutch in it - akin to the freewheel on the rear of a bike, or a ratchet. This lets the gear spin faster than the starter motor once the engine catches, so that the engine doesn't essentially grab the engaged starter motor and spin it waaay too fast. letting back on the key lets the fast spinning gear disengage without trouble. If there is an issue with that clutch/ratchet, that might also be allowing the gear to spin without it actually pushing - like the clicker in a ratchet sticking so that it'll spin either way.

After that.... there is likely both a relay and a fuse for the starter. Not a bad idea to check that neither is blown, or, in the case of the relay, looking sort of browned and cooked.

Hope this helps!
D

Dec 05, 2015 | 2000 Oldsmobile Alero

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I have a 2000 toyota celica gts and it wont start or turn over the starter will make like a whinning sound but its not trying to crank the engine maybe its the starter but just in case its not anybody have...


Likely either the starter or solenoid. Solenoid is a combination of relay and actuator, pushing the starter's gear into engagement with your flywheel.

Oct 28, 2014 | Cars & Trucks

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Starter on my 91 ford ranger 4 wheel drive starts my pickup a couple time then it just spins have changed it 3 times now


Assuming the starter motor spins but doesn't engage to turn engine over to start you could have a bad starter drive which is part of the starter assembly or possibly damaged/missing teeth on flywheel ring gear. Depending on year and model vehicle, some starters you can replace just the starter drive otherwise you need to replace the whole starter. If you changed the starter look at the flywheel.

Sep 18, 2014 | Cars & Trucks

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2002 Kia Rio, sometimes it starts up fine. More and more often it sounds like the starter motor is spinning, but its not engaging. So it's not even attempting to turn over the engine. It's not a clicking,...


very good post, few like it.
this is the starter free spinning
the solenoids job is the engage the teeth the fly wheel (ring gear)

the pinon shaft in starter is dirty, clean it (easy fix)
bad starter solenoid. get a new starter , most solenoids cost more.
your suspisons are dead on.

Oct 12, 2013 | 2002 Kia Rio

1 Answer

Quadzilla starter motor turning but not engine


The starter has two parts. the large part of the starter is a motor that turns the gear that engages the flywheel. the smaller part of the starter is a solenoid that pushes the gear foreward to align the starter gear to the flywheel. Sounds to me that either the starter shaft or gear have become stripped, or the sterter solenoid is not pushing the starter gear foreward. Most likely the solenoid failed.

Feb 01, 2012 | Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

05 grand cherokee wont start .full power lights dont dim when cranking then it starts like nothings wrong. i tried jump starting it then i climbed under it and hit the starter and it started


If the starter motor spins at high speed, but doesn't turn the engine until you whack it, the starter gear is not engaging the flywheel. Probably the engagement fork or the starter gear is worn out or sticky, or the solenoid isn't pushing it far enough.

Sep 21, 2011 | 2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee

4 Answers

Starter spins but will not engage


this could be a few problems that cause this,

1. your battery could be weak and not have enough juice to engage the starter solenoid

2. the bendix could be messed up

3. this is probaly the most common problem, the starter solenoid went out

the best course of action would be to have your battery load tested, and if its fine, replace the starter

Apr 03, 2011 | Daewoo Lanos Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

2000 chevy impala, starter spins but does not engage


if the starter spins but does not engage flywheel. then its the starter solinoid thats bad. its on top of starter, when key is turned to start, the solinoid is activated, and it pushes the gears out to make contact with flywheel to start vehicle. so the solinoid just spins with out kicking out to flywheel. change solinoid or get another starter. have a good day !

Nov 27, 2010 | 2000 Chevrolet Impala

2 Answers

Grinding noise when ignition is turned


THe starter engages the fly wheel and in the process turns the motor over to cause it to crank. The grinding can be a bad starter causing the gear to either not engage fully or not disengage. It can also indicate missing teeth on the flywheel from damage from starter. If the car cranks and grinding goes away it points to the starter solenoid not engaging properly.. pushing gear into contact with flywheel. I would recommend replacing the starter and you can replace it with a good mechanical knowledge and DIY.

Jun 08, 2010 | 1997 Chevrolet Cavalier

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