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BillyC

Starter Stays Engaged

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The starter on my 91 LS 400 is staying engaged for longer and longer periods of time

when I first start it in the mornings. Any idea what the cause is and what failure I am

headed for?

Thanks, BillyC 91LS400 208K miles.

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i think your headed for a new starter. has there been a starter thats been put in there already? because these starters tend to go every 100k miles or so if thats your original starter in there that starter lived a long and purposeful life :lol:

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The plunger on the solenoid is not releasing. It is either sticking with carbon deposits on the swing arm or the contacts.If you hurry up and clean it you might save the starter from burning out,.

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agre with sk perfomance, its just a dirty plunger

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I have this same problem. How difficult is it to get to the "plunger" and what should it be cleaned with? Thanks!!

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Thwe plunger activates the starter. It is under the intake manifold.Not for the faint of heart to remove.

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My starter also hangs engaged sometimes, but only in the morning when the car is cold. Someone wrote about the contacts wearing which caused this problem. If the starter was accessable, it would be no big deal, but.... it is not.

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Mine also hangs more when it's cold...

What seems to help me is to release the ignition key just as or just before the engine starts, this sounds implausible, but you can get a 'feel' for when your engine is about to start and when you release the key the momentum of the engine rotation keeps it turning over enough to actually start anyway - doing it this way disengages the starter before it has a chance to hang due to being engaged to the motor whiles it's actually begining to run and picking up RPMs.

I know you should just replace the damn thing, but in the meantime...

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That is when the starter on my car seems to "hang"- is when I first start it in the morning. It has that "errr" sound for about a second or two. Obviously pulling a lot of power, because I can see the fasten seat belt warning light get brighter when the noise stops. If I recall, my uncle told me that when he had the starter replaced on my aunts 1990 LS400 back in the late 1990s, due to a faulty automatic starter, it cost over $1000. :rolleyes: Has anyone ever had the a starter replaced on one of these cars lately? I understand that it is a timely repair and requires moving of a lot of parts, such as intake manifold ?, etc. In one of the replies, it seems as if it takes about as long to get to that "plunger"? Is this true? If so, it seems like one would be better off just replacing the starter. I doubt I will replace my starter. I will probably sell it before I do that, as I do not want to put any more $$$ into this car, especially considering that I have that annoying vibration that I still have not figured out. :blink::rolleyes:

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90, you have brought up something that I wasn't sure about. The automatic starting feature. With the LS, all you have to do is just turn the key once and it is suppose to crank until it starts. Then, it doesn't disengage quickly enough. I wonder if the automatic starting feature can be disabled? Does it even have automatic start or is that part of the problem?

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90,  you have brought up something that I wasn't sure about.  The automatic starting feature.  With the LS, all you have to do is just turn the key once and it is suppose to crank until it starts.  Then, it doesn't disengage quickly enough.  I wonder if the automatic starting feature can be disabled?  Does it even have automatic start or is that part of the problem?

VB- I am not 100% sure what your are referring to about the automatic starter.

I should have been a little more clear in my reply. I meant to put a "remote" starter feature was placed on the car, rather than "automatic" start. My uncle thought it would be great for him not to have to go outside on chilly mornings and start the car, when it was not in the garage. Something happened to it and it kept the starter engaged longer than it was supposed to on a few occasions and it ruined the starter.

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NO what I was talking about is what seems to be an Automatic Start function. You insert the key and turn it to the start position and you don't need to hold the key in the start position, it cranks by itself until it starts.

Is it suppose to do this?

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NO what I was talking about is what seems to be an Automatic Start function. You insert the key and turn it to the start position and you don't need to hold the key in the start position, it cranks by itself until it starts.

Is it suppose to do this?

Not that I know of. I have never noticed it on my car. I will have to check it the next time I drive it to see if it does.

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You are right VB- my car does have that automatic start function, but only when it is first started of the morning for the first time. It continues to crank, even after the ignition is released until it starts. Later in the day when I tried it- it stopped as soon as I released the ignition before it started. Perhaps it is because a little longer time is required to start when it is cold, but it still seems like a un-necessary feature. I just want to get that "errr" sound fixed that the starter makes even after the engine has started, that also only occurs when first started in the morning. Perhaps that feature is what is "sticking"? From what I have heard- it is cause for concerns.

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