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sprinkles08
sprinkles08, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Cadillac
Satisfied Customers: 22000
Experience:  ASE Master and Advanced level certified. Factory trained with 15 years dealership experience
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I turn the ignition switch with key and i get a one click

Customer Question

I turn the ignition switch with key and i get a one click from the starter, no start. try it again it does it again, or starts , no matter how many times it clicks , eventually it starts. 91 eldorado. thanks
JA: Is the car in "Park" or "Neutral?" Do you know if your car has a "wheel lock" feature?
Customer: car is in park, and yes it has as wheel lock feature.
JA: What year is your Eldorado?
Customer: 1991
JA: Are you hoping to fix this yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: new starter, new battery, new negative battery cable.
JA: Anything else you think the mechanic should know?
Customer: it might start 10 times in a row, then the 11th time starter clicks.
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Cadillac Mechanic about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Cadillac
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** is a common symptom of a failed starter. How long ago was starter replaced?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
A week ago , it did it with the old stater ,so replaced it acdelco , and it still does it .
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

Monitor battery on large wire going to starter and let me know what voltage drops to while trying to start.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
OK, but can't do it till tomorrow morning, can I tell you then ?
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

Yes that is fine, I'll talk to you then. Thanks.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Thank you , I really need to get this figured out .
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

As of now it sounds like a wiring problem or bad ground.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Ok
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

I'll talk to you tomorrow, have a good evening.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
You to. thanks Dan .
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

Thanks

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Dan give me about a hour got to find someone to turn the key while I'm under the car with the meter. Thanks
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

Sounds good, voltage should be at least 11v when trying. If low verify battery maintains at least 11v when trying to start. Also make sure starter case has good ground when trying to start. Let me know, thanks.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
OK, got give in a little time , raining outside , just a drizzle you clear up soon .
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

No problem, thanks..

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
OK Dan , battery was at a 12v before the key was turned , when turned and hooked to starter dropped to 11v, did the test several times , it click once or twice and during that time voltage did not move .thanks
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

During test did you use the starter case for ground?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
No , I used the cars body .
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

Try again while using starter case as ground. Let me know, thanks.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Ok
Expert:  Dan replied 8 months ago.

Thanks.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I got the same reading.11v when cranking !
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 8 months ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer!

If you get a single click from the starter then the problem has to be the starter itself, the engine unable to physically turn, the engine ground may be poor, or you may be losing power to the solenoid.

With one meter lead on battery negative and the other on the engine, what voltage is shown on the meter with the key held in the crank position?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Give my about 10 minutes, be back with the answer. Thanks
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I got a 5.7v reading .
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 8 months ago.

You have a poor engine ground then. What specifically was the cable that was replaced?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
The negative battery cable , but today I ran a 12 gauge wire from the engine block to the body for a ground , but still got that click .
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 8 months ago.

There is without a doubt a problem with the engine ground. There is a problem with the cable or connection somewhere from the battery negative terminal to the engine.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
OK, I will check that when I get home for work tomorrow evening , I will let you know what I find or what I've tried to do with the ground . What voltage should I have gotten with the negative battery cable and engine block test ?
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 8 months ago.

0v. You found that 5.7v was being consumed in the ground circuit somewhere.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
OK, thank you
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 8 months ago.

You're welcome!