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  #1  
Old 11-25-2008, 04:10 PM
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1994 E500 Won't Start

Electrical gremlins or something easier. After searching and looking through several previous posts and cannot locate this one.

Last week after going to the gym at 5:00 am, I went out to my car about 2 hours later, 35F, and presto - no start. Lights came on, radio worked, HVAC "seemed" operational, but only a faint "click" and then nothing. Had the car towed home, it sat for a few days until I could get to it, and the 2 year old Bosch battery has 0 volts. Took it back to Pep boys for a replacement, they put it on the analyzer, and an hour later it has 12.3 volts. So home I go, replace battery, and presto, lights work, radio comes on (cycles through waiting for code) but alas, the same faint click and nothing.

Help, please.

Thanks

Steve
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  #2  
Old 11-25-2008, 04:25 PM
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Battery basics

I do not trust pep boys, The battery voltage should be at a minimum 12.6 V. and should be higher after a charge. With 12.3 volts you may have a dead cell in the battery. The battery should be load tested before installation back into the car. If the battery passes the load test then the gravity of each battery cell should be checked. You are looking for one cell with a low gravity that says battery is history. More than likely the battery will fail one of these tests. If the battery passes, the charging system of the car can drain the battery giving the symptoms you describe. You will have to start testing again to find out this one. Most of the time it is the battery.
John
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  #3  
Old 11-25-2008, 04:31 PM
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Hi John,

Trusting Pep boys is not at the top of my list of things to do either. I can always remember having closer to 13 volts, and thought the 12.3 was bit light. Do I need voltage or amperage to get the starter to engage? Having checked the fuses, is there anything else you might suggest I try before heading back to Pep boys for the exchange argument? I have a charger here at home that also says I can use it to jump start a weak battery, but was reluctant to have a power source shooting straight into the car and damaging something else.

Thanks
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  #4  
Old 11-25-2008, 04:50 PM
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Battery

Check the battery cells for water first ( If possible some batteries are sealed ). Once you have a good level in each cell then you can hook up a charger than that is the route I would take. To insure you do not hurt the car you can disconnect the battery from the car B-4 charging but you do not need to. Look for a charged battery voltage above 13 and below 14.5 before testing again. If you can measure the voltage of the battery when the starting the car you will probably see the voltage drop below 9.5. If you are starting with 12.6 this means the battery is not holding the proper charge to start you're car. 90% of the time this will be the problem. New battery is needed. Good luck, John
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  #5  
Old 11-26-2008, 06:37 AM
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Check and clean the battery connectors at the terminals, also earth lead from the battery to the car body.
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  #6  
Old 11-26-2008, 11:36 AM
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OK, Here goes. Had Pep boys provide me with a free replacement Bosch battery. Sure enough, it has 12.65 volts static compared to the previous one that had 12.3. However, same problem. All accessories work but nothing from the starter. All of the wiring looks good, but I do not have an amp meter that goes high enough to measure for a short in the cabling. Obviously with the battery in the trunk and no corrosion at the terminals, wires in good shape - I'm feeling a bit lost.

Any other idea's?

Thanks
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  #7  
Old 11-26-2008, 11:50 AM
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Did You inspect the Starter wire harness? Also The Grounds?
Test the starter for voltage with the key in the crank position?

Could be the starter gave up..If The Battery Voltage is ok and the voltage from the Ignition switch to the starter is good..Not much left
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  #8  
Old 11-26-2008, 12:16 PM
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Thanks Mark - Do you know where I can get to the starter harness? From the top down view the starter seems to have a heat shield protecting it from the exhaust header. Do I need to figure out how to remove it to get to the harness or is there another way to test?

Thanks
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  #9  
Old 11-26-2008, 01:21 PM
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Have you tried locking & unlocling the car so that the alarm system sends signal to starter interlock relay?

And did you check fuse # 5?
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  #10  
Old 11-26-2008, 01:42 PM
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The starter shield comes off with two 10mm bolts and one 10mm nut, and needs to come off for inspection or replacement of the harness. The harness is almost certain to look bad though but may not be the problem. With the shield off you could jump it to the starter.
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  #11  
Old 11-26-2008, 02:54 PM
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Good inputs. Rechecked fuse number 5, looked good but replaced with new. Locked car from outside using key. Unlock - repeat. No start. It looks like I will need to crawl under the car to get to the starter. Since the rest of the day is "office" work it will have to be my Thanksgiving treat. If there are not any other idea's I'll do that tomorrow or Friday and report back.

Should there have been any symptoms or signals if it is the starter? is this a DIY in the driveway or does it need to be up on a lift?

Thanks again.
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  #12  
Old 11-26-2008, 03:56 PM
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Look 2 " the left of the brake fluid reservoir /cap....see a 3 wire plug commector on that firewall ????
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  #13  
Old 11-26-2008, 05:01 PM
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Arthur, I think I found it, next to a couple of vacuum lines? It looks like it is directly above the steering column where it passes through the firewall.

What next?

Also found a rectangular "box", pulled the cap, and discovered a place for two fuses. One had a red (20A?) fuse and the other was empty. Any idea what is going on here?

Thanks
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  #14  
Old 11-26-2008, 06:18 PM
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No..that is the blower motor one.

Nothing to the left of the reservoir..on the wall that seperates the engine from the brake booster?
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  #15  
Old 11-26-2008, 06:31 PM
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I had the same exact issue with my E500 - turned out to be the EZL (Ignition Control Module). This might be the issue here (hopefully not since it the EZL part is expensive).
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