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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I accidentally turned the car on in 2nd when the clutch wasn't fully pressed and it started jerking forward. By the time I got it out of gear the car had hit a fence. Luckily the body wasn't damaged as it was going pretty slow, but after pushing it back and trying to turn it on it won't start.<p>When I put the clutch in with any gear it turns on all the accessories but won't give a spark. Guessing it's an ignition problem so I banged on the starter a little bit.<p>Any ideas?
 

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Re: 1800 not starting? (redhotjose9)

The lights come on when you step on the clutch??<br>That is pretty weird!<br>What year car is this?<br>Is the electrical system more or less OK otherwise?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Re: 1800 not starting? (Walrus3)

1971 Volvo 1800E.<p>No I can turn the accessories on and lights and everything so the electrics are fine in that sense, but when I turn the key all the way to where it should crank the engine nothing happens. No sound, no chugga-chugga, nothing. That's why I think it's something to do with the ignition.<br>It just seems like a coincidence that when I hit a fence at 2 mph and it had been running fine before it suddenly won't start?
 

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Re: 1800 not starting? (redhotjose9)

It is pretty hard to tell if the ignition system works when the engine won't crank.<br>The starter and the ignition system are ONLY connected at the switch and otherwise are totally independent,<br>So on the basis of that I would say the most visible problem is that it won't crank, and the status of spark is unknown.<br>I would suggest you start by cleaning the battery terminals and cables so that they are shiny where they touch and good and tight. That should at least give you a click when you turn the key to the start position.<br>If not, put the car in third or fourth and rock it back and forth a bit in case the starter is engaged. That should make it turn loose.
 

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Re: 1800 not starting? (Walrus3)

Just a guess...<p>Sheared motor mounts allowed the engine to shift causing a poor electrical ground at/near the starter.<p>Could also be a chunk of chain-link fence stuck under the car.<p>George Dill
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: 1800 not starting? (gdill2)

The fence is more like horizontal and vertical 1/4" metal rods spaced a foot form eachother to make 1' x 1' squares, so it'd be pretty obvious if a piece of fencing was missing. <br>Any other ideas, I'm about to go try the battery terminals.<p>But when I turn the key to where it should crank all the lights and things work fine just as they should. The ONLY thing missing is that the engine isn't cranking....<p>??<p>-Isaac
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Re: 1800 not starting? (redhotjose9)

Cleaned the terminals and the connection to the starter, still nothing. <br>All electrics are still working so it must be a problem at or after the starter.<br>Also tried rolling back in neutral and forwards in 4th and won't crank still.
 

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Re: 1800 not starting? (redhotjose9)

Starter solenoid may be stuck in the "engage" mode.<p>George Dill
 

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Re: 1800 not starting? (redhotjose9)

Carefully jump +12V to the starter terminal that is not grounded.<p>George Dill
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Re: 1800 not starting? (gdill2)

Are you talking about just the starter terminal not being grounded or the starter itself?
 

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Re: 1800 not starting? (redhotjose9)

Most starters and solenoids are grounded through the engine block. On most solenoids there should be two threaded post and nut connections and one or more male plug in (or very small threaded post and nut) connectors. The + (always hot) lead from the battery goes to one of the threaded post connectors, and a jumper lead from the other to the starter. The male plug (or one of them if more than one) receives a wire (+) which goes to the ignition switch, and is only hot with the switch in the "start" position. With the ignition switch in the "start" position current is sent through this wire to the solenoid to activate it, which does two things: it closes the circuit between the two threaded posts, thus activating the starter, and at the other end of the solenoid it activates a lever which engages the starting gear (drive) on the starter with the ring gear on the flywheel, thus (hopefully) turning over the engine.<p>There are four primary tests for most starting systems:<p>1. Make sure the starter mounting bolts are tight because if they aren't, the starter and solenoid may not be sufficiently grounded, or the starter drive gear may be either jammed in the ring gear or not making contact with it.<p>2. Turn the key to the "start" position. If the starter turns over but doesn't engage the ring gear, then there's probably a problem with insuffient voltage to the starter or a problem with the solenoid or starter drive. (See 1.) If it doesn't turn over but you hear "click," the solenoid's probably OK but either there's not enough battery voltage getting to it, or an internal problem in the starter.<p>3. Using a voltmeter, check for full battery voltage at the post and nut connector which receives the + lead from the battery. If there's no voltage reading or its not the same as the battery voltage, the lead is bad or the battery connection is dirty. If the reading is the same as the battery, check for voltage at the post and nut connector for the bridge lead to the starter; there should be no voltage here unless the ignition switch is in the "start" position. If there is, then the solenoid is broken with the contacts closed or it's jammed in the "on" position. This is dangerous and will also rapidly drain the battery and may damage the wiring, so disconnect it immediately before going any further.<p>4. If the other tests come out OK, with the ignition switch in the "start" position, test for voltage at the plug connector for the lead from the ignition switch. This may or may not be full battery voltage, depending whether or not the system has a ballast or similar device which limits the voltage to the solenoid. If there is no voltage at this connector, then it's probably a switch, wiring or ballast (if any) problem. If there is voltage but there's no "click" from the solenoid, or there is but the starter won't turn over, then either or both need to be replaced (or sometimes, the starter is gummed up with crap and needs a good clean-up and the bearings and starter drive re-lubricated).<p>As already noted, these are generic hints and they're also off the top of my head late at night, so I may have missed something or your system may be slightly different.<p>Almost forgot this basic hint: make sure all the electrical connections are clean and rust free.<p>And another one. <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/rolleyes.gif" BORDER="0"> If the starter turns over and you get a grinding noise, first go back to 1. above, and if that doesn't resolve it either the starter drive gear or the ring gear on the flywheel is buggered up. The first only means pulling the starter to fix or replace it, and the second means pulling the tranny, clutch and flywheel in order to replace the ring gear. <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/eek.gif" BORDER="0">
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Re: 1800 not starting? (John2x240)

Ok here's my response to the previous post:<p><br>1. All bolts seemed tight.<p>2. When I turn the key to there's no click or any sort of noise anywhere. The only noise I hear in turning the key at all is a click from a relay under the dash when it's turned to accessories.<p>3. Reads 12 volts at starter so connection from battery is good. Where is the bridge lead to the starter?<p>4. No matter if the key is in the off or start position, there's 12 volts in the ignition under the dash from the wire that connects to the starter. Is that correct? It seems like it is since that connects to the + side of the battery. I'm not sure I'm checking at the correct point at the ignition.<p>I've never worked with starters so I basically no nothing. Whatever you guys tell me I'll try and do but my starter vocabulary and knowledge is limited.<p>Thanks for the responses!<p>-Isaac
 

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Re: 1800 not starting? (redhotjose9)

There should be one small wire to the starter that doesn't go onto the big terminal which has multiple other ones, including the battery cable. It goes to a spade terminal below the big terminal. That's the wire that comes from the START position on the ignition switch, and should be the only wire on that switch terminal. It should get 12V only when you turn the key to START.
 

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Re: 1800 not starting? (gdill2)

Reading through this thread again, I noticed something that George said earlier about the ground strap being damaged due to the bump into a fence, so maybe you should check that first. You should also use an ohmmeter to check the resistance from the block to the negative terminal on the battery to make sure there's a low resistance. I don't know what it should be exactly, but I'd think it shouldn't be more than a few ohms.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Re: 1800 not starting? (John2x240)

I removed the ground and cleaned it first. I can't think it's the battery since I get 12 volts. Will try the one in my 940 though.
 

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Re: 1800 not starting? (redhotjose9)

Connect a voltmeter to the battery terminals and check for voltage drop when you turn the key to "start." Fully charged the battery should show a bit more than 12 volts, and if it drops much below 9 volts when you turn the key to "start" then probably either the battery is toast or it's the starting system (wiring/solenoid/starter motor, etc.).
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Re: 1800 not starting? (John2x240)

No voltage drop really, goes form about 12.5 to 12.3 or so. So the battery must be in fine shape
 
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