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so without having a meter on this my first idea is the motor starting contact relay saddle mounted contacts either have a wire loose, broken, or the contact itself has failed and not sending the feedback to the plc that the motor starter has in fact closed to start the motor, one way to trouble shoot this is to manually close the motor starter and ohm out that particular contact set to see if this shows it closed. do this with the power off as when you close this manually it will try to start the motor. ohi it before and after u manually close that starter relay.
You are only tapping a starter solenoid to see if the internal contacts are burnt & preventing the starter from getting any voltage or current
If you have eliminated the battery & cables & have voltage at the starter solenoid with the key turned to start ( need a helper & a volt meter,not a test light) then remove the starter & have an auto parts store test or replace it
You can also just install the solenoid,in which case you take the old one apart ,to see what the problem was & how it works. That is how you learn things
First, Have your Battery tested. The Alarm systems in Ford made Products are very sensitive to Voltage. There are 3 systems in the car which interrupt power, the Alarm system (horn honking) and the Battery saver and finally the starter interlock system.
The Alarm system will do several things to disable the car from starting. It will reduce the voltage to the starter to prevent the engine from turning over. Some will even kill the ignition system so that if the starter is jumped, the car still won't start.
The Battery saver will disconnect any system to prevent discharge below a minimum threshold. Unfortunately, when the Alternator is working extra hard to charge a really bad battery: it will disconnect the charging circuit because it reads the Draw going to the Alternator to produce the power as a parasitic drain. Even at 70mph I have seen the charging disconnected and the vehicle coast to a stop when the electric runs out.
The last system worth mentioning is the Starter interlock. Under the dash and at the top of the Brake pedal lever is a switch. When you press the brake pedal, the switch allows the starter to crank provided the shifter is not in D or R. Drivers feet routinely hit this switch and either move it or break it. When it breaks it can short and drain the battery.
As you mentioned a Random problem, the Brake switch can shake to create a random problem if it is loose or broken. Your rear brake lights can be affected.
With the horn honking, at least part of your problem is the Alarm system. You can have a bad ignition switch too, which reads the keychip to disable the alarm. Your keychip may be bad and setting off the Alarm.
I had a new Lincoln myself which set off the Alarm randomly. I actually slept inside the car one night so I could turn off the alarm in the Apartment complex parking lot. Did'nt know if it would start again if the battery was disconnected and then reconnected. The Battery was shorted with less than 1000 miles on the car. It was a factory defective battery less than 3 months old.
But your car has many years and miles on it so it was worth mentioning the wear items. I hope my solution is helpful.
Possible solutions; 1. starter contacts sticking-take the switch apart and clean the contacts or repalce the swtich. 2. wire to starter button shorting/grounding-look for broken/shorting wire from the starter switch. 3. starter solenoid contacts welded together-replace the solenoid
Some of the tests I can recommend for free require the car to be driven to Autozone, Advance, or Oreilys. You need to have the charging system and the battery checked. Then they can check the "draw" of the rebuilt starter for performance. Or have the starter removed and bench checked. It should have some type of warranty.
Now other problems can cause you to destroy a starter. One of them being a malfunctioning Alarm lockout. When the battery is low, a lockout may still reduce the voltage to the starter on purpose. This is a form of antitheft.
You need to explain to us if the engine was turning over before and if the engine tried to fire at all. Some heat related failures occur in the coil.
Only if you really want to burn your vehicle to the ground. The alternator on your Saturn connects to the starter solenoid with a 12 Ga. Fusible Link. Replacing that wire with anything but 12 Ga, Fusible Link wire is a one-way ticket to a fiery grave. Standard 12 Ga, wire should also NOT be used.
IF ITS THE FACTORY ALARM,ITS THE ANTI THEFT MODULE.THERE IS A BUTTON UNDER THE DASH THAT YOU HOLD DOWN WHILE TURNING THE KEY IF IT DOESNT START. SOMEONE HAS MOST LIKELY JUMPERED THE SWITCH SO IT WILL START AND DRIVE BUT THE MODULE HAS FAILED.ITS COMMON ON FORDS