In Reply to: Starter failure on my brother's car? posted by Tim Collins on February 26, 2000 at 13:14:19:
: My brother's '86 Audi 4000CS quattro won't start. The power is fine. The starter just makes a loud click, if you touch it with your palm while someone else tries to start the car, you can feel the click. Does this mean the starter's siezed up, or could it just be the solenoid? Anyone know anything about starters? Thanks.
: Tim Collins
Two things happen when you turn the key to start the car (in the starter). Power is applied to the solenoid, which moves the Bendix gear into mesh with the flywheel, and power is applied to the starter armature and field windings, causing the armature to turn at the same time the Bendix drive is moving toward engagement. Since you can feel a "click", it is probable that the contact responsible for energizing the windings and armature is not conducting. Depending on the construction of the solenoid and starter, sometimes one can rotate the contacts 180 degrees to extend the life of the starter (assuming nothing else is wrong). On the other hand, since the starter is already out of the car to do this, some people just replace it. I usually rebuild the unit (bearings, Bendix, and solenoid) when parts are available. Your mechanic will just replace it since he wants it to work with no problems.