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Starter on the fritz

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Old 10-31-2011, 08:05 AM   #1
Drewski [OP] Drewski is offline
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Starter on the fritz

So my "good morning" from the taco today was an overenthusiastic starter. I went to crank it and the truck started no problem, but the starter kept going. I shut the truck off, and it kept cranking. I pulled out the key, and the starter kept cranking. Hmmm. Just what I want to do at 6am. First thing I thought as I was barely waking up was to pull a fuse or relay. Wait, what fuse or relay? (Remember, it's 6am. Not thinking all that clearly.) I'm pulling fuses and relays left and right, nothing works. So I just disconnected the battery and sat down to think. Thanks to a "starter rebuild" post on good old TW, I could see where the starter was located and where the power was. So, I put a piece of cardboard down on the garage floor and crawled under (love that tall prerunner suspension! ). There are two connections, one power and one harness/connector type. I thought I could just pull the connector, but when I reconnected the battery, the starter was cranking again. Unplugged the battery, unbolted the power to the starter, and sat down to think. Again. How can I start the truck but keep the started disconnected? (The truck is an auto.) I have got to get to work. So my still sleeping brain came up with this: take the nut off the starter power wire, put a long zip tie on it, reconnect the wire without the nut. Reconnect the battery, the truck starts. Crawl under the truck, pull on the zip tie (I ain't touching a hot starter wire, thank you) and it kills the starter, but the truck stays running. Great idea right? So, I put all this together, reattach the power to the starter without the nut, and reconnect the battery and....
Nothing. The starter didn't spin on its own. So, I disconnected the battery again, bolted up the starter power line, and jumped in the truck, crossing my fingers, and started it up. The truck was running, and the starter stopped cranking.

Now the question is... what's the problem? I'm assuming its just an old worn starter which needs to be rebuilt or replaced. A reman is like $160 at Napa, not sure what the dealer charges, but the labor would be $168 at the dealer. I could rebuild it as per TRDracing's how-to (should be a sticky), but I'd rather get it done today. I might just get the reman and install it. Fun fun fun!
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Old 10-31-2011, 10:50 AM   #3
I'll eat all your food.
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Your plunger was stuck on, causing the gears to engage forward and engage your flex plate. Your lucky you didn't do damage to the plate..my old truck did the same thing once but I was fucking driving when it happened and I was right around corner from my house...it pulled the starter out a lil and end of marring the teeth of my flywheel because they weren't fully engaged.


You could rebuild it or just buy a new one.
I prefer to re-build it because I'm a cheap ass.
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Old 10-31-2011, 11:39 AM   #4
Drewski [OP] Drewski is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UndefinedTaco View Post
Your plunger was stuck on, causing the gears to engage forward and engage your flex plate. Your lucky you didn't do damage to the plate..my old truck did the same thing once but I was fucking driving when it happened and I was right around corner from my house...it pulled the starter out a lil and end of marring the teeth of my flywheel because they weren't fully engaged.


You could rebuild it or just buy a new one.
I prefer to re-build it because I'm a cheap ass.
Yeah, I hope there isn't any other damage, the starter was running for a minute or two before I was able to figure out WTF was going on. I'm just going to get the rebuild kit because:
1) saying "I rebuilt the starter in my truck" gets handyman cred from the guys (and the fact that it's only $35 gets some credit redeemable from the wife ) but mainly because
2) I'm also a cheap ass.

Actually my cheapassitude is the reason I bought the truck. I'm not paying someone to rehab the kitchens and bathrooms (and basement eventually) in our city two-flat. And it's a PITA to haul away debris and pick up drywall and 2x4s in the 'speed3.
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Old 10-31-2011, 03:02 PM   #5
I'll eat all your food.
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Nothing wrong with managing money and saving it by doing your own labor
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