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No Start No More

Q. I try to start the car and it doesn't make an attempt to turn over. all the warning/check lights inside come on, so it is not the battery. it has seemed like it takes longer time cranking before the engine will turn over.

Now nothing. no noise from the starter at all. Could it be the solenoid or the starter itself? Or something else altogether? it was working yesterday (last night at 6pm) and today (this morning at 7:30 am) it just does nothing. I am going to have the starter tested, but I don't want to have to spend the time and headache of tearing the engine apart if it might be something else. not to mention that everyplace I call has to order the part, so the sooner I figure out what is wrong, the quicker I can get the part and get it installed.

  • 1997 Ford Aspire
  • 1.3 liter
  • manual transmission
  • 72,000 miles
  • Fuel injected

Hoping you can help

A. A starting problem like this is relatively easy to troubleshoot. You need to start at the starter. Grab a test light and put it on the small wire going to the solenoid. Have someone turn the key and if the light lights, you know everything up to the starter is okay. Then you can go ahead and replace the starter and solenoid. 99% of the time it is the starter that's bad.

If the light doesn't light, then you have to trace back. The next place to check would be the ignition switch. If you get power out of the switch when you turn it to the start position, then the problem is between the switch and starter. Keep tracing back until you get to the battery. You'll need a wiring diagram and you can get one at the local public library.

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