The starter in your car uses its power to set the wheels in motion. What is its function? To begin the mechanical ballet beneath the hood, transforming a sleepy machine into a roaring powerhouse of motor delight!
The starter is usually found on the engine’s bottom. It’s tucked among a tangle of metallic wonders. Its cylindrical design, embellished with wires and connectors, acts to start the car.
In this article, you will find out where is the starter located on a car and all the relevant information on it. So, stay tuned!
Where Is the Starter Located on a Car?
Unfortunately, not every vehicle’s starter is located in the same place. The three most common places are just above the transmission on the driver’s side, underneath the intake manifold, and below the exhaust manifold on the passenger’s side.
The starter is often located beneath the left bank of engine cylinders on the driver’s side, between the transmission and the engine.
However, the starter of rear-wheel drive vehicles is typically found on the passenger side of the engine, next to the exhaust manifold. The starter may occasionally—but very rarely—be found beneath the intake manifold. The intake manifold is mounted on top of the engine.
What Is The Purpose Of A Car Starter?
The starter is the electric motor that starts the engine when the ignition is turned on. It spins the engine over so that air can be drawn in.
The motor is powered and the magnets inside the body engage when the ignition switch is turned on. The motor has a flex plate attached to the back. The plate is equipped with ring gear, which enables the starter to work.
A starter motor has a solenoid that electronically releases a lever first. Until the solenoid forces the gear into position on the flywheel of the engine, it is hidden away in the starter.
The solenoid is fired by electricity that is started by the ignition key. When the solenoid is activated, the starter motor’s gear teeth begin to revolve, eventually turning the engine’s flywheel to start the vehicle.
The gear in the starter motor turns because the starter is an electronic motor with magnets, brushes, and coils.
What are the Different Starter Location Varying In Different Car Models?
Depending on general models, here are starter locations that very in the cars:
Front-Wheel Drive Models
The starter is normally placed in the front of the engine bay in front-wheel drive cars. The engine is usually mounted transversely.
It is frequently seen deep down, close to the gearbox. Try to find a cylinder or rectangle with electrical connections coming from it.
Depending on the specifics of the vehicle’s construction, the starter may be mounted to either the engine block or the transmission case.
Rear-Wheel Drive Models
Rear-wheel drive cars often have an engine that is longitudinally positioned and runs parallel to the length of the car. In these vehicles, the starter is frequently found next to the flywheel or flexplate at the back of the engine.
Look for a small, cylindrical item attached to the engine block or gearbox bell housing.
Mid Engine Models
Mid-engine cars have the engine positioned between the front and rear axles. The starter is situated near the flywheel or flexplate in the back of the engine compartment.
Taking off the engine covers or reaching underneath the car may be necessary to reach the starter. A little, cylindrical part with electrical connections is what you’re looking for.
V6 and V8 Engine Models
Cars with V6 or V8 engines contain the starter between the cylinder banks. The starter is normally positioned halfway between the cylinder banks in these arrangements.
It could need to be accessed from the vehicle’s undercarriage or via a hole in the exhaust system. Look for a cylindrical part that has electrical connections going to it. This part is usually located between the engine and the transmission.
Inline Engine Models
Depending on the individual design, the starter is typically placed on one side of vehicles with inline engines. That is either closer to the front or rear.
Although the precise location can vary, it is often found around the transmission or at the bottom of the engine block. Lookout for a cylinder or rectangle with electrical connections coming from it.
How To Fix a Faulty Starter?
The short-term solution is to hammer it. Yes, I know what that sounds like, but seriously. You’ll get a couple of starts as a result.
Locate the starter in the engine compartment, and have someone lightly tap the starter with a rubber mallet while simultaneously turning the key in the ignition.
The thing is, cannot fix a starter by rewinding armatures, replacing diodes, and changing solenoids you. It needs to be replaced. It is the only permanent solution.
After the hammering, eventually, the starter won’t start again, so you’ll need to get a new starter. Get a rebuilt one. Due to the copper content, they are half as expensive as a new one after core exchange.
The brushes become worn on the inside, which causes the armature (commutator) to become stuck. If you hit the outer casing of the starter with a hammer it may temporarily unstick it. Hit the outer casing while starting.
How to Replace The Starter Located On A Car?
Installing a starter, especially older model American vehicles is quite easy. To prevent shorting out other electrical components, first, unplug the cords from the battery.
Remove the old starter after first removing the connections from the battery to prevent shorting out other electrical modules. Save it to trade in for a rebuilt one (usually situated toward the bottom of the rear passenger side of the engine).
There are only 2–3 bolts holding it in. Line up the new starter where the old starter was and lastly attach the wire to it. The hardest part if you are alone is to hold the heavy starter in place while you screw it in.
Have a second person hold the starter in place. Don’t forget to reconnect the battery cable before starting or it surely won’t start. It should take about 20 min for one person and 10 min for two.
Be very careful under the car. Block the tires so that the car does not shift and fall off the jack. Jack stands are an extra safety precaution in this regard.
Where Is the Starter Located on a Car? – FAQs
How can I determine if my car’s starter is faulty?
Look out for signs like a clicking sound, the engine not cranking, or the dashboard lights dimming. If the battery is okay but the engine still shows these problems, the starter is your culprit.
Can a faulty starter prevent my car from starting?
Yes, a malfunctioning starter can prevent your car from starting. Because it is responsible for starting the engine’s ignition process.
Are starters located in the same place in all cars?
No, the location of the starter can vary depending on the make and model of the vehicle. Consult the owner’s manual or seek professional advice to find the specific location in your car.
Is it safe to replace a car starter on my own?
No, it is recommended to have a professional mechanic handle the replacement to ensure proper installation and safety.
Can I jump-start a car with a faulty starter?
Not really. Jump-starting a car can help if the starter issue is due to a weak battery. But when the starter itself is faulty, jump-starting may not be an option.
Can a bad starter drain the car battery?
Yes, a faulty starter can draw excessive power