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Starter rebuild - best kit

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by japeda, Sep 15, 2018.

  1. Sep 15, 2018 at 4:45 PM
    #1
    japeda

    japeda [OP] Member

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    Well it's that time for me (237k miles) when the key turn responds with silence or a soft *click*.

    Then a few tries later she roars and all is well with the world.

    I'd like to try to fix the starter rather than replace it, and it seems like I have 2 options: Dorman kit with contacts but without the plunger for 15-20 bucks on rockauto or the national rebuild kit which comes with the plunger, but is 35$

    ((https://www.dormanproducts.com/p-1049-02349.aspx?origin=keyword), and https://www.nationsstarteralternato...-with-Plunger-2-contact-p/drk rebuild kit.htm)

    Any suggestions on which kit to get? I'll probably take the starter off tonight and can take a gander at the thing to see if a plunger is necessary.

    Peace
     
  2. Sep 16, 2018 at 12:01 AM
    #2
    Wyoming09

    Wyoming09 Well-Known Member

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    If the contacts are worn out the plunger is pitted and burnt as well .

    Not replacing or at least cleaning it up will have new contacts failing sooner then you want

    I have never not replaced the plunger when installing new contacts
     
    japeda [OP] likes this.
  3. Sep 16, 2018 at 8:48 AM
    #3
    skeezix

    skeezix Well-Known Member

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    So what's the difference between $25 and $35, considering what you have to go through to get the starter out and back in again?? If I were doing it (and I've done it once already) I would pop for the full $35...

    $10 is the price of a decent hamburger and a coke...
     
  4. Sep 16, 2018 at 10:43 AM
    #4
    japeda

    japeda [OP] Member

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    yea 10 bucks ain't much if it buys me another few years before another replacement. I guess I was just confused they even sold a kit without the plunger and wondered how necessary the new plunger was because of it. I took out mine and the plunger is dirty and worn, so it's a no brainer. Bought the kit today. With luck this hunting season I'll get more than a few cheap burgers anyways ;)

    thanks for the input fellas.
     
  5. Sep 16, 2018 at 7:02 PM
    #5
    NeonTaco

    NeonTaco Can I put this jet engine in my truck?

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    ThunderOne likes this.
  6. Sep 17, 2018 at 2:12 PM
    #6
    japeda

    japeda [OP] Member

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    That's the same one I got, it's in the mail now. Someone on Amazon said it worked in his 1999 taco so I'm guessing it works in my 2000 3.4l. It should come Wednesday and I'll put it in then if all goes well. If you want to wait for me to try it out I'm happy to let you know if it works or not, just write me and lemme know you're waiting.
     
    NeonTaco likes this.
  7. Sep 17, 2018 at 2:38 PM
    #7
    NeonTaco

    NeonTaco Can I put this jet engine in my truck?

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    I ordered already too. It's the wife's truck and I need it fixed ASAP, so Ill be installing tomorrow when they come in. Sounds like an easy job from what I have read but need to do a steering rack and tie rod job too while I'm in there...
     
  8. Sep 18, 2018 at 8:22 AM
    #8
    skeezix

    skeezix Well-Known Member

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    Make sure you have a look at Timmah's video in which he removes and replaces the starter. When I watched it, it was an exact repeat of what I had to do, right down to the jacking around to get the starter out from the top... ;)
     
    NeonTaco likes this.
  9. Sep 18, 2018 at 1:52 PM
    #9
    japeda

    japeda [OP] Member

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    Yea the starter should be an easy one compared to the steering rack! Let us know how it goes and if you learn any tips/tricks. I already got the starter off and the plunger out and nothing was too tough.

    I didn't watch that video (though it's a good one) and also didn't find it as hard as he made it look. I jacked up the right axle and removed the passenger tire, then took off the electrical connectors through the wheel well. I crawled under the truck and used a ratcheting crescent to take out the lower starter mounting bolt and a socket with a swivel and a couple of extensions to get out the top one. Then I had to flip the starter vertical to make it fit out the bottom.

    I guess there's more than one way to skin a cat.

    If you're taking out the steering rack it'll give you more room to work with down there anyways
     
    NeonTaco likes this.
  10. Sep 18, 2018 at 6:24 PM
    #10
    NeonTaco

    NeonTaco Can I put this jet engine in my truck?

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    Well I have a problem...

    I replaced the contacts and cylinder, but the truck is still not starting.

    All procedures were followed and I was extra careful to replace everything where it was.

    TTT's video was a great help and he did have a decent process of removing the starter. It still took me about 2 hours and a lot of cussing.

    I did this after a full day of working in my shop so I'm beat to hell and have not made any actual progress other than finding out that is NOT the contacts...

    My arms are full of fiberglass from the heat shielding and chemical burns from brake cleaner.

    There was a major oil leak when I bought the truck but has been fixed. EVERYTHING is till coated in oil though, so my hands get covered in 1/8" of oil grime if I even look at the bottom/side of my motor.

    The tub is stained grey and the wife is glaring at me...LOL!

    Where do I go from here?

    I guess a new starter is in the cards... just wish I could fix this one and save the $100...

    I'll start a thread asking what else I can do to troubleshoot this.

    Thanks guys.
    :frusty:
     
  11. Sep 19, 2018 at 10:54 AM
    #11
    japeda

    japeda [OP] Member

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    Sorry to hear it.

    If you're working on it after a long day you might have forgotten to fully connect one of the 2 electrical connectors? Or the battery?

    Wouldn't be the first (or fifth) time I've fixed something and spaced out on a minor detail putting it back together that made me think I did the whole fix wrong.

    I once had to fix a motorcycle starter for a rare moto in argentina where parts were very expensive and hard to get, and I had to take the magnetic part of the starter off and get the copper refinished by an alternator specialist in addition to replacing the contacts. All in all, I'd say if you're certain it is the starter still not working I'd just bite the bullet and get a new one rather than dealing with all that bs of fixing that one, but I'd be very careful to ensure that the starter is really your issue here. Rockauto has some cheap ones (85$) but maybe no so cheap if you're in a pinch to get em finished and need fast shipping.
     
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  12. Sep 21, 2018 at 2:34 AM
    #12
    NeonTaco

    NeonTaco Can I put this jet engine in my truck?

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  13. Sep 28, 2018 at 9:50 AM
    #13
    japeda

    japeda [OP] Member

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    For the record of future interneters: That Amazon rebuild kit (Victory Lap ND-34SOL) worked great to replace the contacts/plunger on the starter of my 2000 3.4L taco. it even comes with a few extra contacts.
     
    Kiloyard likes this.

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