Question about 1996 Geo Prizm

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I replaced the battery terminal cable ends. Now the car will not start, There is a clicking noise from the starter.

I replaced the battery terminal cable ends and now the car will not start. There is a clicking sound from the starter.

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Bad connection on cable ends or where they connect to battery. Quick check is if you have a good set of jumper cables, use the jumper cable as a replacement for what maybe the defective one. Hook negative cable good to battery neg. post and then put other side on neg cable to engine ground on block. See if it cranks, if it does than the trouble is on the neg. cable. If not then put positive cable on pos. post of battery. Then put other side of pos. cable on the starter post, try to start. If it cranks then the trouble is on the pos side of cable. Hope this helps.

Posted on Nov 17, 2013

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

  • 328 Answers

SOURCE: having starter problems,try boosting,check battery

you better check your starter motor (relay and/or fuse)

Posted on May 31, 2011

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  • Okay, a clicking sound is the solenoid engaging the starter drive gear but the starting motor is not turning over. First possible is low battery. Second is bad or dirty connection, usually battery terminal. Good enough to energize solenoid but not enough amps to spin starter. Third is a bad starter motor, usually a brush corroded, worn or stuck.
  • Lift the hood and look at the battery terminals. if they are clean and tight, check the battery for charge. I usually hook a booster on and try cranking the engine over. ZIf it works, charge or replace the battery.
  • If it didn't crank, Take a jumper cable and connect the one end to the battery positive. Touch the other end to the starter motor terminal. Motor should turn over, if not, replace the starter.

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Sounds like a flat battery, it will have enough power to kick in the starter solenoid [the clicking noise] but not enough to turn engine over. Best to fit a battery that you know is good into the vehicle. If the fault still persists the starter could be faulty. To check the starter bridge the main battery power terminal [30] on the starter solenoid and the smaller terminal [50] also on the solenoid [power from ignition switch]. The starter should turn. MAKE SURE VEHICLE IS IN NEUTRAL WHEN DOING THIS AND TAKE CARE NOT TO BRIDGE POWER CABLES TO STARTER HOUSING.

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The positive battery cable is prone to corrosion at the battery end. Many times, the connector will completely decay loose at the cable end. Replace the cable if that is the case--don't use a clamp-on replacement terminal as they are prone to failure. Make sure the negative cable is in good condition as well. Check the connector interior for a bright lead surface. Check the tightness of both cables at their far end terminals. Hope this helps!

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mware nailed the first thing to check but if the battery checks out OK, the next step would be to remove the battery terminals (always negative first) and clean the cable end and the battery's terminals. If this still doesn't help, you will have to trace the two cables to their other ends (one, the positive, will go to the starter itself) and thorougly clean those . Having a battery terminal tool (cheap, auto parts store) and a standard wire brush.
If you've done all that, the starter solenoid (which may be integral to the starter) is the next suspect.
The starter is the last step in the chain. If you need to replace it, I have had good luck with 'refurbished' starters and alternators, just make sure they are warranted.

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First check your battery, if it is OK, then it can be corroded terminals at the battery itself or where the heavy cables terminate; at the starter input terminal (+ cable) and where the negative is attached to either the block or chassis. Both ends of these cables should be cleaned now and then and either dielectric grease or even petroleum jelly can provide some protection against renewed corrosion. NOTE: ALWAYS disconnect the negative battery terminal first! If a tool slips and ends up between the + terminal and any grounded point, it may melt the tool. If the negative is first to be disconnected, it doesn't matter if you slip on this one.

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The problem doesn't need to be the starter; the first thing you should eliminate is the chance that the problem is only poor contact at the battery terminals, the point where the negative cable is attached (either body sheet metal or engine block) and the starter terminal itself.
You can buy a tool for cleaning battery terminals at any auto parts store or, if the battery has side terminals, use any wire brush. - Disconnect the negative terminal from the battery first. - Then remove the positive terminal. - Clean all parts throughly. - Reattach them. - Try starting the engine.
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I've had pretty good luck with rebuilt starters and these will cost far less than new.

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