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Virtual Wrench
Virtual Wrench, Chevy Mechanic
Category: Chevy
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Experience:  35 years Master Mechanic
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Chevrolet Lumina My starter on my 98 lumina 3.1 v6 clicks

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My starter on my 98 lumina 3.1 v6 clicks like the the solenoid is engaging. It is a rapid on off clicking noise even when I have another car jumping the battery. I put a new starter in ....same thing. It even does the same thing when I jump the post on the solenoid of the starter to bypass the starter switch, relay, etc. I have also tried turning the engine slightly to make sure it wasn't just a alignment issue with the flywheel and solenoid gears. I'm at a loss. Is their something after the starter starts that the computer is looking for and not seeing? The starter does not seem to attempt to turn the engine much less start. ????

This is almost always because of a voltage drop going to the starter. Do you have a volt meter to test with?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.



Good deal,

Set the meter to 0-20 DC volts scale.

Connect the leads to the battery cables and record that reading.

With meter still connected, try to start it and record what the voltage drops to at the same moment it starts clicking.

Let me know both readings please.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
It read 11.9. Then when tried to turn over it went to 3.9.

That's what i thought would happen. There are a couple of reasons that this happens.

1. Poor contacts, corrosion, inside the cable connections at the battery. Or just plain bad cables.

2. dead or shorted cell in the battery.

If either of these are present it won't even take a jump from another car and that's why it can be confusing because you would think the battery is good if it doesn't take a jump. But that is NOT correct.

First remove the cables and clean off the posts and the cable ends REAL good. If it doesn't start. Replace the battery. Guaranteed to fix it :-)

If you have further questions feel free to reply.Please remember we use an honor system and you have to click on accept so i receive credit for assisting you. Even if you have a subscription, you will NOT be charged again.You can always ask follow up questions right here for no extra charge even after you click on accept. Please take a moment and leave me some feedback. By accepting, it shows me that you appreciate my time, expertise and help.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Lol, you sound pretty sure and I assume with your experience you sure know what your talking about. Ill do as you advise, but by some chance this isnt it how can I continue this line of questions without paying again ( I have no problem with the 30 dollars, it is well worth it), but I have to go get a battery and i don't know how long this session will stay open?


You can reply back here anytime...just don't forget about me :-)
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Thank you very much. As soon as I get battery in and it starts (which im 99% sure it will) I'll accept answer and pay. By the way, I think this web site is a great thing. I'm not ignorant of how to work on cars, but im a engineer tech who works on factory machinery and not cars. Thank you again. You will hear back from me soon.
Pretty neat huh?

After you log in, at the top right of screen is "my questions" click on that, or you can just reply to any of the emails sent to you :-)

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
You da man :). Just as you said. Thank you very much.
Hi there,

Got her handled 'eh...

Good job on the testing. Keep in mind that voltage drop test will work on pretty much any car that has that symptom.

If you are satisfied with my help, please click on accept so i receive credit. Even though you placed a deposit, you must accept so i receive credit. Please take a moment for some feedback :-)

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