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post #1 of (permalink) Old 12-11-2001, 10:50 AM Thread Starter
 
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How do I test these? Battery, Starter Soleniod

Since my 88 didn't want to give me any signs of electrical life, and wasn't able to be jumped started. It was suggested on here that I pull some stuff out and have it tested in order (Battery, Soleniod, Starter)
I've got the Battery and Soleniod out, is there any way I can test these? without taking to a parts deal, since it's before the holidays and I'm a little short on cash untill right after them .
Any ideas?
I've got a electrical engineering lab I can use, so any amount of voltage or testing equipment shoudln't be a problem.
I remembe someone said I should see if the battery holds 12.6 volts, I remember when I was younger having a battery charger that did that, but don't have it now ?


Thanks


88'/4.2L/30's/
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 12-11-2001, 12:14 PM
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Re: How do I test these? Battery, Starter Soleniod

Why not take it to a parts store, they usually test for free. Have it tested if they say its bad or good say thanks and walk out. If you have a battery charger you can try charging the battery and see if it will hold a charge, charge it test voltage, then wait and see if it looses voltage. The starter solenoid I never could get a convincing test (my battery was screwed up), by I suppose with a volt meter you can switch it on and measure to make sure voltage comes out. I assume you have checked to make sure everything is nice and clean everywhere including the starter?

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post #3 of (permalink) Old 12-11-2001, 12:16 PM
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Re: How do I test these? Battery, Starter Soleniod

1. Remove the starter, solenoid and battery.
2. Charge the battery, leave it overnight.
3. Take the alternator to a shop and have it tested on a growler.
4. Apply 12 volts to the soleonid. Do the contacts close? if so it's likely good.
5. Measure the resistance across the relay when the contacts close. It should read zero ohms. If not, replace the solenoid.
6. If everything tests OK, re-install it.
7. There'as RED wrie ( I think) running from the alternator up to the common positive voltage distribution lug on the solenoid. Does this wire read zero Ohms of resistance? If not, it should, replace it.

Here's a rule of thumb I go by when jump starting a vehicle:

Fast charge to start = Problem is Battery.
Slow charge to start = Problem is Alternator.

The tests on the alternator are free.

Start there and come back with the results...



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post #4 of (permalink) Old 12-11-2001, 12:27 PM
 
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Re: How do I test these? Battery, Starter Soleniod

Here is the rub, Bub...

Test the battery, volts and amps.
You are looking for about 12.6 or higher voltage at around 500 amps.

Test the solenoid...
Connect 12 volt power to large terminal on left, test for power at large terminal on right.
Ground the bracket of the solenoid. Be sure of this ground.
Connect power to terminal marked 'S'. (this should activate solenoid) Test for power on terminal on right.

Starter,
Ground case (using jumper cables from known good battery just fine) and apply positive to starter terminal.
Starter should spin, and the starter drive should jump out to the end of the nose cone.

Most discount auto parts stores will test batteries and starters for free.

90% of the time when this happens, and you didn't leave something on to run the battery down, it's the battery cables.
To test the battery cables, clean the ends well, check the cables for corrosion or lumps in the cable under the insulation.
Reinstall and try to start the vehicle.

If it still doesn't start, use your jumper cables and by pass the positive cable from the battery to the solenoid, and try the key.
If that doesn't work, use your jumper cables and by pass the other side of the solenoid to the starter connection and try the key.
If it still doesn't start, test for power from the connector that hooks to the 'S' terminal when the key is turned to 'Start'...
No power here would indicate a problem with either fuse block, or ignition switch, or wiring in between.

So many cats, so few recipes...
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 12-12-2001, 09:57 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How do I test these? Battery, Starter Soleniod

Thank you all, will being doing the tests in the next few days. Of course this all comes down during finals week, so it's going to take a day or two.
I"ll post back with the results.

88'/4.2L/30's/
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