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Old 12-03-2019, 01:50 PM   #1
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'97 F53 460 Rexhall - Starter Troubleshooting

Hi All,

I believe my starter gave up when u was attempting to park the RV last night. It's a '97 460 (of course).

SYMPTOMS: Key turn, click no attempt to turn over engine, i can hear whay sounds like the starter spinning. The sound though sounds slightly like there is a bit of grinding (not exactly but close to that). But i believe that it's the starter spinning?

Battery charged to 12.5v but going charge more. My understanding is that's plenty of voltage.

Working on finding components right now.

1) found the starter relay in doghouse on driver side of engine compartment.

2) Starter Relay - donde esta? I believe i read it's behind the, damn brain fog today, the shield in passenger side (?) wheel well?

3) Starter - Haven't gotten undeerneath just yet but am doing that in just a second. Have a buddy on the way to turn key so i can hear the sound better.

Sooooo, any tips on troubleshooting the system. Might as well check it all while I'm working on it.

Thanks a BUNCH in advance. Will check back often as I nose around.
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Old 12-03-2019, 03:30 PM   #2
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UPDATE: Starter is turning but sounds weak. Pulling it to take for testing. Engine doesn't even begin to turn over.

Concern i have is the flywheel teeth broke so Starter turning against nothing. Thought though is it's the starter that's busted ao not meshing with flywheel? Guess I'll know once starter is pulled.

If I'm missing something, i kniw i haven check voltage at solinoid but if starter is turning I'm going after that starter... better get it done before it starts raining....
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Old 12-03-2019, 05:30 PM   #3
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There is a very distinct difference between a starter that is spinning freely not connecting with the ring gear (flywheel) or one connected to the flywheel and cranking the engine slowly or just cranking it and the ignition is not firing or it's not getting fuel.

If you've been around vehicles even just a few years you should know the difference. Knowing what it's doing determines your next step in diagnosis.
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Old 12-03-2019, 05:30 PM   #4
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don't remember reading it anywhere but on this chassis the bolts are on opposite sides. One bolt is connected from the front & other from the back?

I'm wondering if it's not supposed to be thay way but along the way someone had to remove the starter then had really hard time connecting top bolt so they connected from the rear. ???

Had to stop before getting top bolt out due to rain. Will get it done in AM.

Otherwise, testing the solinoid i found 12.3ish voltage across the big lugs. Can't get reliable continuity reading so not sure...I'm going to buy a new one just because I've read solinoid are fickle as heck complete with "critical need circuity" set for failure only at critical need times.
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Old 12-03-2019, 05:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TeJay View Post
There is a very distinct difference between a starter that is spinning freely not connecting with the ring gear (flywheel) or one connected to the flywheel and cranking the engine slowly or just cranking it and the ignition is not firing or it's not getting fuel.



If you've been around vehicles even just a few years you should know the difference. Knowing what it's doing determines your next step in diagnosis.
TeJay:

I'm only passingly famiar with sounds of a starter which ia why i asked. You just helped me describe the sound. It's not contacting the flywheel but spinning freely. Could the starter habe an actual mechanical issue preventing the needed contact with flywheel?

The sound is similar tje sound an electric motor makes if it's nit installed with just power to see spindle spin. Same basic sound.
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Old 12-03-2019, 05:35 PM   #6
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Yes, The starter solenoid is supposed to pull the pinion gear into the flywheel so it can crank the engine. The solenoid is a magnet that is energized when you turn the ignition to the crank position and 12 V's is sent to the starter solenoid.

That could be defective or just broken. Remove the starter and it can be checked very easily.
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Old 12-04-2019, 05:46 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brecklundin View Post
don't remember reading it anywhere but on this chassis the bolts are on opposite sides. One bolt is connected from the front & other from the back?

I'm wondering if it's not supposed to be thay way but along the way someone had to remove the starter then had really hard time connecting top bolt so they connected from the rear. ???

Had to stop before getting top bolt out due to rain. Will get it done in AM.

Otherwise, testing the solinoid i found 12.3ish voltage across the big lugs. Can't get reliable continuity reading so not sure...I'm going to buy a new one just because I've read solinoid are fickle as heck complete with "critical need circuity" set for failure only at critical need times.
Yes, the top bolt goes in from the rear and the bottom bolt go in from the front. That's the way Ford designed it. Really an easy job. The relay in the dog house is world famous for failure. My starter is OEM @ 167,000 miles and the relay has been replace twice.

Richard
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Old 12-07-2019, 02:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TeJay View Post
Yes, The starter solenoid is supposed to pull the pinion gear into the flywheel so it can crank the engine. The solenoid is a magnet that is energized when you turn the ignition to the crank position and 12 V's is sent to the starter solenoid.

That could be defective or just broken. Remove the starter and it can be checked very easily.
Thanks much TeJay....you always have the info...much appreciated.

It's pretty much rain free today so going after it shortly...freshly pain medicated... hehehe, no worries today is ibuprofen.
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Old 12-07-2019, 02:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by House Husband View Post
Yes, the top bolt goes in from the rear and the bottom bolt go in from the front. That's the way Ford designed it. Really an easy job. The relay in the dog house is world famous for failure. My starter is OEM @ 167,000 miles and the relay has been replace twice.

Richard
thanks so much for clearing that up. The bolt arrangement seems to make it much easier to get to both of them.

But don't tell my wife, she thinks i have to buy a couple new tools.... so shhhhhh, mums the word!
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Old 12-07-2019, 02:58 PM   #10
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oh, i checked local prices for both parts...the danged starter motor is $40+ more in town. The relay isn't bad though.
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Old 12-08-2019, 02:39 PM   #11
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Ok, here is starter relay(?) ... it has power coming in, no power to opposite large post.

For folks who are in the weeds as i was laat week i suggest these two references:

from this iRV2:
starter solenoid & relay

And really through YT video, beware it's about an hour duration. Basic and answers a lot of questions I had simply due to incomplete understanding.
https://youtu.be/_rBNtSgfCkk
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Old 12-09-2019, 03:35 PM   #12
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Ok... I'm confused is this the starter relay or starter relay switch? I see two otema show when i search. One ia the device below and the other is a modular plugin relay, which i can't find referenced anywhere in my docs and online info is inconsistent as heck... thx! Click image for larger version

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i can add that if i jumper across tje large lugs i hear starter click but no start with key in start position. There is power to the device at image top lug. And also the small post on image center. Image bottom lug has no power.
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Old 12-09-2019, 04:01 PM   #13
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is one of these the relay in question?

The 2nd shot shows a page in owners manual but it does not indicate any box of one column of relays as shown in first shot. also mentions a fuseable link at starter motor relay. More confused. Sorry folks I'm nust having frustrating & painful day...thanks for being patient with me.


Click image for larger version

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Old 12-09-2019, 04:05 PM   #14
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oops, manual page Click image for larger version

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