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Old 07-24-2013, 12:14 PM   #51
Marde
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“The ground to the starter”… I am guessing that there is no ground cable for this at all. The starter is likely grounded to the engine block simply by installing/bolting it onto the engine. There is a ground cable INSIDE the starter assembly.

Also, I must warn you that if your engine did not have a good ground… each engine start attempt, was likely an electrical storm for an unknown part on your engine, transmission or other location. During engine start attempts, the 12Vdc was searching for a ground. This can cause an array of (unknown to me) problems. An experienced car mechanic surely has some stories about situations like this. It is also possible that no damage was done.

Oh sorry.... Happy Birthday!

Last edited by Marde; 07-24-2013 at 12:20 PM. Reason: Happy Birthday!
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Old 07-24-2013, 12:24 PM   #52
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I just don't know what else to do at this point.... They tested the starter before I left the shop but who knows I could have fried the stupid thing myself trying to start a car that wasn't grounded....
Thank you.
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Old 07-24-2013, 12:45 PM   #53
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My 2000 focus just done the same thing. I took my alternator off and had it tested and at first the alt checked out fine. The guy wanted to tear it down and look at the inside for $20. I agreed and found something on the inside that was arcing improperly. I'm not an alt guy and can't tell you what it was but he did show it to me and he fixed it for $95 dollars total. B/c of the improper arcing, it was sending a bad signal to the computer. If you someone that will take it off for you and get it looked at, you may can go from there. Maybe this helps.
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Old 07-24-2013, 01:43 PM   #54
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So you replaced the ground cable right? Did you re-perform the Test, and now there is a positive change? The 12Vdc is now NOT disappearing?
If you remove the starter and take it to be tested or replaced; make sure you inspect the starter/engine mating surfaces and see that it is clean of dirt/debris that could prevent a good electrical ground.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ajs2000zx3 View Post
My 2000 focus just done the same thing. I took my alternator off and had it tested and at first the alt checked out fine. The guy wanted to tear it down and look at the inside for $20. I agreed and found something on the inside that was arcing improperly. I'm not an alt guy and can't tell you what it was but he did show it to me and he fixed it for $95 dollars total. B/c of the improper arcing, it was sending a bad signal to the computer. If you someone that will take it off for you and get it looked at, you may can go from there. Maybe this helps.
After reading Ajs200zx3’s post, I have reviewed the electrical diagram and can see how the Alt could (if shorted out) redirect / kidnap the voltage/current needed for the starter. Instead of rushing to remove the Alt and having it tested (that is a lot of work), I have an idea that you should consider. This idea is for testing purposes only. Do this only to see if the engine will start->

Here is an Idea: Disconnect the electrical connection between the Alt and the Starter. This can be done at either end, but since you have been working on the Starter Terminal-1 a lot recently, disconnect it right there. Terminal-1 should have 2 wires connected on it, 1 goes to the battery and 1 goes to the Alt. Make sure you keep the one going to the battery connected. Once the Alt is electrically disconnected from the starter, make sure you protect that dangling terminal lug so that it is not touching anything during your next engine start attempt. If the car starts during this test, you should not keep it on very long because the Alt is not connected to your battery and the battery will be draining/dying.

Outside of the wire disconnected during the “Here is an Idea” test above, the Alt could have a different circuit to keep the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) happy. If the PCM is not happy, it can disable the starter Control Circuit. Consider performing the other test that confirms operation of the Control Circuit by monitoring incoming 12Vdc on Terminal-2 -during start only.

Once you confirm all this electrical stuff is good (and possibly replace the starter for the billionth time) you will have to re-visit amc49’s idea that the engine could be seized. You will need to learn how to manually “turn the engine’ to verify it is not seized.

Added by Edit:
Additionally and unfortunately, disconnecting the Alt from the starter could be fed-back to the PCM and the PCM could in turn disable the starter control circuit… doubtful, but possible. If this is happening, it would render the “Here is an Idea” test to be practically useless. To confirm this I would need additional wire diagrams and maybe even some Ford Focus technical training or maintenance books.

Last edited by Marde; 07-24-2013 at 02:02 PM. Reason: Added note at bottom of post
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Old 07-24-2013, 03:05 PM   #55
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Yes I reperformed all the tests and it came back good. I went and got the starter tested since now I am able to pull that stupid thing out in less than twenty minutes.
I am going to test the wiring from the ignition to the starter next. GRRRRR
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Old 07-24-2013, 07:25 PM   #56
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My final update is here! It finally starts. The ground cable and fixing the bolt on the neutral safety switch worked! My friend that had put the new neutral safety switch in hadn't been paying attention and didn't put the bolt in right. My car thought it was in drive when it was actually in park.
Thank you so much for all of your help!
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Old 07-24-2013, 11:26 PM   #57
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Great news! I am ready to use my first emoticon. Sadly, I cannot find the emoticon that shows Birthday Balloons with I FIXED MY CAR TODAY on them. You learned many things, and I learned too. One year older and one year wiser huh? Take care.
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Old 07-25-2013, 12:52 AM   #58
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Wow what an excellent thread and a brilliant piece of education from Marde, Amc49 and others on in-depth electrical starting problems and fault finding.

Doff my hat to you guys!

Glad you got there finally Ashleigh.
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Old 07-25-2013, 02:01 AM   #59
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I am sorry Amc49 for my attitude I was just beyond frustrated and I took it out on you. I should never have done that.
Thank you so much to everyone who helped me with this terrible problem!! I think there may still be a small short somewhere in the car because when i got home it seemed to shut off the electronics and other stuff for a few seconds and then it turned back on but I should be able to figure that one out on my own.
I have definitely learned plenty about cars from this trouble but now in the future I will know where to look first and how to do everything.
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Old 07-25-2013, 05:05 PM   #60
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Gotcha and all is good.....................sorry I have not as much patience as I used too.
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