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Why would flywheel spin without turning the motor

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Possibly the bolts have been sheared off.

Posted on Nov 29, 2014


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Turn key. starter engages flywheel engine start to turn over. Then starter disengages form flywheel but continues to spin without care actually starting.

There maybe a problem with starter motor? Some of the national brand auto stores will test starter for you. Of course, you have to take it off and take it to them.

You could take the starter off, lay it on the ground, Hook up jumper cables properly from starter to battery. The starter should kick-out the drive gear and spin. If starter drive gear kicks out and in, something is wrong. Anymore I replace starter solenoid and starter motor as an assembly.

It wouldn't hurt anything to check flywheel teeth while your at it.

Oct 29, 2015 | Pontiac Grand Am Cars & Trucks

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Starter relay ground

Usually if the starter spins but does not engage the flywheel, the problem is the flywheel or the bendix drive in the starter. The starter gear is supposed to extend to meet the flywheel when the starter spins.

Apr 24, 2013 | Alfa Romeo Cars & Trucks

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Starter will not engage

If you hear the starter motor spinning freely without any load, then the engagement fork (sometimes called the Bendix mechanism) is not functioning, or you have broken teeth on the flywheel right at the starter gear. The starter solenoid does two things: it closes the high-current contacts between the battery cable and the motor, and it pulls on the fork that pushes a small spring-loaded gear into line with the flywheel. To narrow down the problem, first verify that the starter is properly mounted (bolts are not loose, missing or broken). If this is not the issue, then disconnect the ground cable from the battery and remove the starter. Inspect the starter gear and flywheel. If there is no apparent problem, connect the starter wiring (prop up the starter if necessary to avoid strain on the wires, but make sure the prop is sturdy enough to hold against the motor startup torque), reconnect the battery and have someone turn the key to start for a couple of seconds while you watch the starter gear. If it does not slide back and spin, you've found your problem. (You can also take the starter motor to a car parts store and ask them to test tt - this is not as awkward as testing using the vehicle wiring.)

Dec 13, 2011 | 2000 Plymouth Grand Voyager

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Battery is good but when I turn it on it just clicks won't start,maybe after 20 times it starts

Without hearing the sound it makes - it's kind of hard to diagnose.

The engine starting process consists of turning the key to start, the starter motor's rotor moving forward to engage the engine's flywheel, and then the starter motor 's "rotor" spinning until you move the key from "start" to "run". You can hear the starter motor spinning - but one usually can't hear the rotor moving forward to engage the flywheel. As a result, you hear the odd spinning sound - which is the starter rotor spinning. The engine never actually turns over because the rotor never engages the fly wheel. If this is the case, then it is very likely that your starter needs to be checked and / or replaced.

Good luck!

Nov 09, 2011 | 1994 Buick LeSabre

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My Jeep cherokee not starting after removal of flywheel. Is there a specific way to install the flywheel?

The teeth on the flywheel need to be close enough for the starter motor to catch them when it engages. If you removed it and now the starter just free-spins when starting then you may have installed the flywheel backwards and the starter motor cannot reach the teeth on the flywheel. If its making a loud grinding or pinging sound you may need to manually turn the engine a bit to align the flywheel.

Aug 21, 2011 | 1995 Jeep Cherokee

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I have an 06 escape with a 4 cyl. When I started it , it made a noise like the fan blade ws hitting something.I shut it off and checked, noting there, belts ok. When I tried to restart it doesn't start....

Sounds like a Timing chain or gear issue to me too. But check the Starter drive gear and Flywheel teeth. What bothers me is that all cylinders are dead without 1 cylinder creating drag on the compression or power stroke. It seems a little funny that 1 cylinder does not have all valves closed out of 4 cylinders.

I envision the Starter spinning without the motor turning and this can happen if the Starter Bendix stripped or the Flywheel stripped. You would have zero compression. You can put a probe into the cylinder and turn the Crankshaft pulley to determine if the pistons are moving.

Would like to know the outcome of this.

Jan 01, 2011 | 2002 Ford Escape

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Ford Mondeo 2.0 diesel 2002, starting motor was missing now just spins. Is it likely to be the dog gear on the starting motor or more seriously the flywheel teeth. This is not a solenoid issue as the...

I think you are on the right track. I would be inclined to suspect the starter and not the flywheel. The ring gear on the flywheel doesn't usually give any trouble unless it's been abused. Hope this helps.

Nov 12, 2009 | 2002 Ford SVT Focus

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