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Thread: Starter or Alternator?

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    Senior Member vajeeper's Avatar
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    Default Starter or Alternator?

    When it rains it pours....

    I attempted to crank up this morning and all I received was a clicking noise. It only clicked once. I tried jumping it off but to no avail. My radio came on and the gauges moved when I turned the key to try and crank it, but all I got was a single click.

    "I rather be a rightwing nutjob than a left wing liberal with no nuts and no job"

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    Bobble Head Jeeper trailsnail's Avatar
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    Sounds like the solenoid is bad for the starter. If you tried to jump it and nothing happened that would be my guess. You could try giving the starter a wack with a hammer, it might let you get a couple of more cranks out of it. If it was the alternator, it would likely die while driving. It is a simple fix to change out. If you know someone else with the same model jeep, you could try theirs in yours. That way you could rule out messed up wires.

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    No Balls muddyluxury's Avatar
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    you can also take it to the chain auto stores and they should be able to test the starter for you before you go buyin a new one
    -Jeb

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    Senior Member ETSubchief's Avatar
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    Since you have pwr, x2 on the solenoid, but could nt hurt to get the starter checked as well.

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    The Cow Shall Rise Again theyeti1775's Avatar
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    If it's a manual roll start the heep.
    If it starts it's the starter.

    Had the same issue with our Samurai. Didn't replace the starter for what was it about 6 months. Thing was light enough I drove it every day and push started it, or parked appropriately on a hill.

    To the alternator after you get it started disconnect the battery. If the alternator is good the engine will keep running.

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    darwinism at its best irish1371's Avatar
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    I vote battery. I recently had the same thing. If I did a heavy jump(cables on for about 10 mins) it would start and run. If I charged over night it would run for a day. Turns out I had a couple bad cells in my battery and after a while they would allow the battery to discharge and act just like you are discribing
    "Some people wonder their whole lives if they will ever make a difference. Marines don't have that problem." Pres. Ronald Reagan
    Army vs Marines = http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_2M7ckkxQLU

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    Junior Member texascj's Avatar
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    I'd check battery first too since it would be the easiest to take out, then work your way to the other components. If you do disconnect the alternator while its running, make sure you disconnect the positive terminal only or it will die. If it does die after the pos is taken off, the alternator is bad. And be sure you don't touch that terminal to anything negative. This little tidbit from a mechanic friend of mine about this technique...doing this on newer vehicles could cause damage to the computer. Be careful.
    81 CJ7, 30 over 258, did the Weber thing now I'm going with a Howell injection kit, 2.5 lift, SRS, and the all important M998 instrument panel with Equus gages. Also have a 71 AMC 360 to rebuild when I kill the 258.

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    Senior Member vajeeper's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice. It's in my driveway, dead as Dillenger so taking it to the auto store/shop is not an option as it will not crank at all. I will check the battery first and go from there.
    "I rather be a rightwing nutjob than a left wing liberal with no nuts and no job"

  9. #9
    Land Squid Jeffb_79's Avatar
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    I vote battery as well. Mine's died a few times now, same thing, clicking. Tried jumping with another vehicle and did no good after almost 20 minutes hooked up. Ended up calling a tow company to come out, the driver said he see's this all the time with jeeps. For some reason they won't always jump start off another car, don't know if it's crappy cables or not a strong enough power source. Either way, he got me started up in about 5 minutes.

  10. #10
    darwinism at its best irish1371's Avatar
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    I find that when it is hard to jump(on jeeps) it is usually the main ground wire(at block) has become corroded or even fallen off. Jeep would run great once I did a roll start but would not jump. While trying to jump the jumpers would get VERY hot. Due to the fact that the main ground was disconnected from the block.

    as you can guess I went thru a real joyfull peroid of electrical problems from hell
    Once I traced the ground and saw it dangling I filled out my ID 10 T form and called it a day
    "Some people wonder their whole lives if they will ever make a difference. Marines don't have that problem." Pres. Ronald Reagan
    Army vs Marines = http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_2M7ckkxQLU

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