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In an effort to save the cost and bother of a tow to get it repaired, I'm trying to diagnose/fix my '92GT myself. For several years now, it sometimes (once every 50 times?) refused to turn over. I'd switch off the ignition, put it in gear then back to neutral, try again and it started. Now it's dead. New battery, so that's not the problem (I even tried jump starting from my other car). Put in a new starter solenoid (GP Sorensen SS94Z from Advance Auto) but it didn't do any good. All I still get are some clicks and that's it. The business with fiddling with the transmission/clutch previously makes me wonder if it's the starter/clutch interlock switch above the clutch pedal. Are there aftermarket copies of that or is it strictly a $50 Motorcraft part? The starter still doesn't work even if I detach the push on connector on the starter solenoid and use a jumper direct from the positive battery terminal to it (suggested in Haynes Manual). Shouldn't that work regardless of interlock switch being good or bad? Now I'm thinking a bad connection at the starter, so I'll have to crawl under the car and check that out. Or perhaps the starter is bad. If I used a jumper from the positive battery terminal to the positive contact on the starter (isn't that the only contact?), wouldn't it turn over if it's good? Btw, replacement solenoid mentioned above was supposed to be part #SS94 but the box from Advance Auto says SS94Z (my wife picked it up...I would have asked if I were there) and the terminals are actually reversed, i.e. the set of wires including the one from positive battery terminal actually attach to solenoid post closest to battery, not the one closer to the strut, as with the original Motorcraft part. That's according to the directions in the box. Also, that solenoid has two small posts for push on connectors and directions say if the original (in this case Motorcraft E99F-11450-AA) has only one, to use the silver colored post and not the copper colored one. I figure if they were wrong, I wouldn't get clicks, I'd get sparks/smoke/whatever.

Do you have any suggestions for me? I'm a mechanical novice, knowing just enough to royally screw things up! :dunce:
 

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You might have a bad spot in your armature (starter motor). If you know how, or can get somewhere with decent resources to take apart and reatach the starter motor than take it apart. If there is any dings in the armature that will be your problem. However, you are correct, if you are getting a click it is not electrical up to the point of the starter. It will be the interior of the starter. I really thinks its a bad spot in your armature by the describtion you wrote. Time to replace the starter motor.:sosad:
 

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Joes 5.0 said:
You might have a bad spot in your armature (starter motor). If you know how, or can get somewhere with decent resources to take apart and reatach the starter motor than take it apart. If there is any dings in the armature that will be your problem. However, you are correct, if you are getting a click it is not electrical up to the point of the starter. It will be the interior of the starter. I really thinks its a bad spot in your armature by the describtion you wrote. Time to replace the starter motor.:sosad:
Turns out you're exactly right. I managed to start the car by pushing it and popping the clutch (one advantage of manual trannys over automatics). Once at the repair shop, the car actually started after I stopped it. I had the mechanic check it out anyway and, after I was gone, he couldn't start it again at first. He said exactly what you did, probably a bad spot on the armature. He didn't replace it but now I'm thinking I'll probably get a starter and have him put it in. I used to think that was tacky, like bringing a couple of eggs to a restaurant and asking them to make breakfast for me :) , until he once told me he doesn't mind at all and other customers do it all the time. I've crawled under the car and found the lower bolt on the starter easy to reach but the upper one next to impossible, so I''ll let the pro do it.

Any thoughts on which brands of starter are best? Remanufactured or new? Autozone has a new "Duralast-Gold DLG581S" for $140. Thanks for any advice you can provide.
 

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If you have any more problems starting the car, (with the bad starter in) just hit it with a shoe or a hammer. I know it sounds bad but it will jerk it off the baad spot in the armature, and it will fire right up. you could probably manage without a new one for awhile, but its not going to last to long. i would say remanufactured starters are just as good, you can get a one with a life time warranty for cheaper than a brand new one. As for the brands I'm not to sure which one's better or worse.
 

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Joes 5.0 said:
If you have any more problems starting the car, (with the bad starter in) just hit it with a shoe or a hammer. I know it sounds bad but it will jerk it off the baad spot in the armature, and it will fire right up. sure
This is also exactly what my mechanic told me! Either you're a mechanic yourself or certainly have the know-how to be one. Anyway, thanks for the info.
 

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Its okay to hit older starters with a hammer but if you do that with new starter you will break the magnets in the starter and then it gets really expensive$$$$
 

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Mine died just last night. I got the $94 durulast, it's a lifetime part. You can do it yourself, the newer rice-burner style starters are easier to change than say, an '90 or earlier. At least you can SEE the top bolt with them. I got the top bolt loose with a 9/16s wrench. I think you could use your hands to remove it once it's loose enough. I use a couple of extensions and a universal joint between them. I put the new one on in the dark autozone parking lot, and when I fired it up, the difference was night and day. It cranked much faster than the original.
Although I gotta say that autozone (and before them, Nationwise) starters are the reason I'm so proficient at this particular job.:gringreen
Also, on autozone, I prefer the store on the rich side of town, well, I noticed that they NOW, charge dramaticly higher prices than other locations, which charge the price on their website. The rich store wanted $120 for the $94 starter. Fv(k that!!! I checked on a reman distributor, website said $64, the rich store wanted like $90 something for it!!! So, Buyer beware.
 
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