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Old 04-09-2014, 02:06 PM   #1
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Sometimes Plans Pay Off ...

Some time ago on this forum someone reported that they experienced a starter failure which turned out to be a bad Starter Solenoid that stuck closed for a long period of time. I decided to add a "Backup Beeper" from a local auto parts store for about $10 to the Starter Solenoid as a means for alerting me that the solenoid was stuck closed.

This morning my plans paid off! I started the coach and went outside to finish preparing for travel and heard the beeper going constantly. I shut off the engine and could then hear the starter running constantly. I grabbed my tools and pulled the power feed off the solenoid within a minute or two to get the starter stopped.

I carry a spare Cole Hersee 24059 relay which also serves as a spare for the HWH relays. I changed the Starter Solenoid in about 15 - minutes and was ready to roll.

If you're not carrying a spare Cole Hersee 24059 relay ... WHY? You can order as spare replay at Amazon for $8.75 plus shipping. Here's the link:

Amazon.com: Cole Hersee (24059-BP) 12V Insulated SPST Continuous Duty Solenoid: Automotive

It's a cheap item to have onboard for several different failures. I would also encourage use of that "back-up" beeper or something similar to make sure you're notified of a Starter Solenoid problem when it occurs. EM had mentioned using a specific cutoff switch on the hot wire since it's directly connected to the chassis batteries. However, you have to know when it's failed because hearing the starter run while the engine to running is not easy.
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Old 04-09-2014, 02:38 PM   #2
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Bob,

Glad to hear you were prepared and were able to avert disaster! Good tip on the beeper... can you share more detail on the type you got and how you installed it?
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Old 04-09-2014, 03:40 PM   #3
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Here's a picture of the entire setup that includes the new Starter Solenoid I installed this morning:

Click image for larger version

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The red & black "can" to the left is the "Backup Beeper". It is 12V and intended to connect to a backup light on a vehicle. I don't recall the name of auto parts store around my house but it I think it came from Auto Zone. I used sheet metal screws to attach it to the wall of the engine service bay. One screw (not seen in the picture) was used to terminate the black wire to ground. The red wire is attached to the switched side of the Starter Solenoid using a crimped ring connector.

If you have the door open when starting the engine you can typically hear a short beep. Once the engine has started you should NOT hear any beeping. If it continues to beep after the engine has started then the Starter Solenoid is stuck in the closed position. Sometimes you can lightly beat on those relays to get them to release but mine would not release. The Cole Hersee 24059 relay is rated for 85 - amps which can handle the starter situation as well as the HWH relays. The "Backup Beeper" & the Cole Hersee relay represent cheap insurance to avoid ruining a starter. The Cole Hersee relay is a cheap backup for multiple problems. BTW, EM identified the Cole Hersee relay back when I had a generator slide problem. Great find!!!
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Old 04-09-2014, 05:41 PM   #4
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Bob I like your set up. I like EM's idea of placing a cutoff switch.Looking at your photo would the switch be tied in on the far right terminal? I could shut down the issue faster with a switch than trying to get a wrench.Any idea of what size switch it would take?
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Old 04-09-2014, 05:58 PM   #5
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Yes, the white wire connected on the right large stud is the source power. I think EM had suggested something like a knife switch mounted close to the solenoid might be a good solution.

If you keep 1/2, & 9/16 (?) wrenches handy you can pull that hot wire off pretty quickly. The starter probably ran for 1 - 2 minutes while got a wrench so I doubt the starter sufferred any. Just make sure you don't touch any metal while turning the nut! I drew a small spark at oner point.
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Old 04-09-2014, 06:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bcbowers View Post
Yes, the white wire connected on the right large stud is the source power. I think EM had suggested something like a knife switch mounted close to the solenoid might be a good solution.

If you keep 1/2, & 9/16 (?) wrenches handy you can pull that hot wire off pretty quickly. The starter probably ran for 1 - 2 minutes while got a wrench so I doubt the starter sufferred any. Just make sure you don't touch any metal while turning the nut! I drew a small spark at oner point.
Thanks Bob. I'm afraid it would look like the 4th of July with me and a wrench on a hot terminal. Sure like it when folks post photos.
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Old 04-09-2014, 07:59 PM   #7
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Great idea! Wouldn't the chassis battery disconnect switch in the service bay de-energize the starter relay? If so, that would make it safe to remove the hot lead.
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Old 04-09-2014, 08:31 PM   #8
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Koop--the answer to your question is: NOPE! The primary starter solenoid [secondary is what failed here] is wired directly to bats--ooops!
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Old 04-09-2014, 09:44 PM   #9
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Personally, I will purchase an insulated 1/2 box wrench and keep it in the engine service compartment for quick access. However, any coach owners that need a simple disconnect switch I suggest using an insulated knife switch such as this one: The Science Outlet - 3147-21 - Single Pole Single Throw Knife Switch - Electricity - The Science Outlet

The problem with using a knife switch is size and amperage rating. Typically, the knife switches I found on the Internet were basically 3" X 2" and could possibly fit on the back wall close to the Starter Solenoid. However, I could NOT identify the amperage rating for any of the switches I found. I believe that EM stated in a previous thread that the Starter Solenoid should be rated at 35 amps or greater. If you're going to add a knife switch you may need to contact the source to obtain the amperage rating. You certainly do NOT want a switch that restricts the amperage to an inadequate level.
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Old 04-09-2014, 09:52 PM   #10
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The "Backup Beeper" or "Backup Alarm" I used is available at O'Reily Auto Parts: Wolo® BA52 - Back-Up Alarm | O'Reilly Auto Parts
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:28 AM   #11
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I had the same thing happen a number of years ago. Unfortunately I didn't notice it and had to have the starter replaced. I also installed a back up beeper and check it after starting. I found that the power to the starter relay came from the battery terminal on the starter. I rewired this to the load side of the chassis power disconnect switch. Fortunately I have not had the occasion to use it.
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:32 AM   #12
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The other side of solenoid failure: Years ago a Carpet Cleaning company with a gasoline powered truck mounted vacuum was demonstrating for the Battle Creek Public School board.. They had soaked the carpet with their chemicals and when they went to start the Wisconson Motor on the vacuum.... No joy.

Turns out the solenoid failed. (no contact)

I got it started for them by bypassing the solenoid for the solenoid and they finished cleaning.. Did not get the contract, but did not get sued either so they were happy with my service.

I showed the crew how to bypass till they got it replaced (not easy or all that safe in my not very humble opinion but necessary, Safe when I do it, but alas,, I know what I am doing).
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Old 04-10-2014, 10:24 AM   #13
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Marine Boat Battery Power Disconnect Switch, Heavy Duty Battery Isolator Switch
I was thinking something like this for a switch.
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Old 04-10-2014, 11:03 AM   #14
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This circuit has#10 wire. I used a simple heavy duty toggle switch rated at 50A (NAPA or O'Really)
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