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Starter problem?

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  • Starter problem?

    Hi all,
    A couple of times recently i've got a faint humming noise when turning the key to start the car and the starter doesn't turn, after a few attempts its OK.
    I'm guessing the starter solenoid is duff, anyone had similar? do I have to replace the starter and solenoid as one unit?


    '90 M3
    '58 Austin Healey Sprite
    '02 Suzuki SV650S

  • #2
    Recently replaced mine as well. Wasnt very expensive from BMW. Was still working ok but was getting tired and took a while to start the car. Believe its all one unit.



    • #3
      I have the same problem - sometimes the solenoid needs a 'tap' with a cut-off broom handle which I now keep in the car.....or else park on a slope (but not my front drive anymore as last time I attempted to bump start down the drive I stopped c. 1/2" from my garage door and nearly messed myself).

      I thought about changing it, but it looks very tight and probably needs the airbox off to do properly??

      Anyone got hints / tips on how to replace starter motor assy?

      Matt R


      • #4
        Im no mechanic and it didnt take me very long. It would have been much quicker but undoing the bolts holding it to the block took the longest part. You do need to remove the plenum (airbox to get at it)


        • #5
          Similar problem here. My starter is to the point that if the engine is at the stiff point of its rotation (due to compression) the starter cannot get it going. It just makes weird noises and hot wire smells. I have to put a socket on the crank and turn the engine over a bit before the starter can work.

          I guess that is a pretty good indication its time for a new starter. I just ordered it. just about $200 from the local dealer.


          • #6
            It's not too hard a job:

            Disconnect battery
            Remove AFM (2 10mm nuts and the harness connectors to the AFM and baro sensor)
            Remove flex hose between AFM and plenum
            Remove throttle cable from plenum (2 10mm nuts)
            Remove vacuum hose bracket from rear of plenum (1 10mm nut)
            Remove 13mm nut for plenum rubber support (beneath plenum)
            Remove breather hoses from plenum (one at the front next to the throttle pot, one underneath next to the support frame)

            Now you can see the starter

            Remove dipstick support where it bolts to the heater piep against the blcok
            Remove 10mm headed bolt securing heater pipe to block (This lets you get to the starter mounting block
            Remove starter support/plenum support from block (1 17mm headed bolt)

            Disconnect wires from starter motor - 8mm, 10mm and 13mm heads - one of each.

            remove two bolts securing starter motor through bellhousing (16mm nut and 17mm bolt head)

            And as they say in the manuals, assembly is the reverse of removal.

            You'll have to reset your stereo and OBC clocks once the batter is reconnected.

            You quite often get a core exchange with starter motors - ask them.

            Hope this helps.
            Scottish Cecotto


            • #7
              Thanks Steve.


              '90 M3
              '58 Austin Healey Sprite
              '02 Suzuki SV650S