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Starter solenoid replacement

Postby John Harkness » 11 Aug 2017 14:17

When starting the MGRV8 recently there were two or three clicks before the starter engaged the engine. I assumed that this probably means that the starter soloid needs replacing. Am I correct and if so where is the solenoid located? Could this possibly suggest a starter motor problem or are the clicks clear evidence of a solenoid problem?

John Hsrkness
John Harkness
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Re: Starter solenoid replacement

Postby Martin Cridford » 11 Aug 2017 18:07

Could also be low battery voltage. Mine 'machine guns' if the battery is not fully charged! New battery fitted this week as it has become more and more reluctant to hold a good charge. (Interestingly the old battery was Korean and sold in the Japanese market! No idea how old it was. I couldn't find any English on it at all and searched the brand name on the internet to find out. New battery is Duracell with a 5-year guarantee from Eurocarparts for a very good discounted price).
Last edited by Martin Cridford on 12 Aug 2017 19:20, edited 1 time in total.
Martin Cridford
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Location: Exeter, UK 1995 RV8 No:1422, 2004 MGZR 160

Re: Stater solenoid replacement

Postby John Hale » 11 Aug 2017 19:07

Before spending any money (!) I would check the battery terminals for tightness, battery earth to the body, engine earth to the LH wheelarch (RV8) and the connection of the + battery lead to the solenoid which is on the starter motor. Move them all around and tighten as firmly as you dare.

If you leave the battery connected make sure your spanner doesn't touch anything nearby when working on the starter solenoid, the battery may be better than you think.
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Joined: 06 May 2015 11:49
Location: Stratford, Warwickshire.

Re: Starter solenoid replacement

Postby Nic Houslip » 14 Aug 2017 12:44

The annoying click when trying to start can often be put down to corrosion of the battery terminals. A layer of corrosion can build up between the clamp and the terminal post, which acts as a sort of insulator. It will allow small currents to pass, but when the starter tries to draw its hundreds of amps it prevents the current flowing and the solenoid sometimes clicks rapidly or just once depending on how bad it is. Quick check is to see if the warning lights [or other lights] go out or very dim when trying to start. Clean thoroughly the terminal posts and clamps with hot water, a recently boiled kettle does an amazing job, but make sure you are outside the garage :-) Remove the clamps, safety first! undo negative first, then the positive to avoid embarrassing sparks, wire brush posts and clamps and smear with Holts No-Crode or Vaseline mixed with a little bicarbonate of soda. The hot water dissolves most of the corrosion and keep top of battery clean.

BTW ON the RV8 the solenoid is mounted on the starter motor and performs a dual function of [a] connecting the battery to the motor and [b] drawing the pinion into engagement with flywheel.
Nic Houslip
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Re: Starter solenoid replacement

Postby Peter Garton » 20 Aug 2017 08:33

This ominous click is usually the starter solenoid which is covered in a RV8 Workshop Note 238 in Volume 7. The solenoid is Bosch part number 0 331 303 168 and is sealed so cannot be repaired. Apolgies for my late reply.
Peter Garton
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Joined: 16 Dec 2012 16:28

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