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Thread: honda civic Starter Motor grinding sound

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    Default honda civic Starter Motor grinding sound

    From the last few days, occasionally during morning start-up my car makes a screeching sound after cranking, the battery is just 1 yr old Hankook dry cell.

    few people said that its the starter motor sound which needs servicing,

    few people said that starter solenoid connection issue because of which it is not releasing the current after engine cranking could be some mechanical or electrical issue.

    this problem is occurring very rarely but i am concern about the cause of this problem pls suggest me what are the things i should get inspected and is it advisable to service the Starter motor.

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    its a 2008 civic.

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    bump.......

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    A grinding sound could be a due to a bad bearing in the starter. I had a similar problem in my 96 Civic, turned out that one of the bearings was broken.
    Never argue with an idiot, they drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.

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    the sound could be from the belt, so also need to get its tension.

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    Probable cause highlighted in Manuals are
    Pinion or flywheel gear teeth worn or broken
    Starter Motor mounting bolts loose or missing

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    most cases for this are

    worn out starter pinion gear
    rusty or worn ring gear on flywheel (I always apply a very thin coat of stiff moly grease on the ring gear teeth to make the starter mesh properly and fully)

    Bad solenoid kickout pawl (if applicable as the gear reduction starter lack this feature.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xulfiqar View Post
    most cases for this are

    worn out starter pinion gear
    rusty or worn ring gear on flywheel (I always apply a very thin coat of stiff moly grease on the ring gear teeth to make the starter mesh properly and fully)

    Bad solenoid kickout pawl (if applicable as the gear reduction starter lack this feature.
    <!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:TrackMoves/> <w:TrackFormatting/> <wunctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <waveIfXMLInvalid>false</waveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <woNotPromoteQF/> <w:LidThemeOther>EN-US</w:LidThemeOther> <w:LidThemeAsian>X-NONE</w:LidThemeAsian> <w:LidThemeComplexScript>X-NONE</w:LidThemeComplexScript> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <wnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> <wontGrowAutofit/> <wplitPgBreakAndParaMark/> <wontVertAlignCellWithSp/> <wontBreakConstrainedForcedTables/> <wontVertAlignInTxbx/> <w:Word11KerningPairs/> <w:CachedColBalance/> </w:Compatibility> <w:BrowserLevel>MicrosoftInternetExplorer4</w:BrowserLevel> <m:mathPr> <m:mathFont m:val="Cambria Math"/> <m:brkBin m:val="before"/> <m:brkBinSub m:val="--"/> <m:smallFrac m:val="off"/> <m:dispDef/> <m:lMargin m:val="0"/> <m:rMargin m:val="0"/> <m:defJc m:val="centerGroup"/> <m:wrapIndent m:val="1440"/> <m:intLim m:val="subSup"/> <m:naryLim m:val="undOvr"/> </m:mathPr></w:WordDocument> </xml><![endif]--> Hi Xulifiqar,


    Its always good to hear your expert opinion. I had a question and wanted to clarify from you. My starter motor screws up occasionally and all I can hear is tik tik sound. This problem happened with old batteries and then they were replaced, still it comes up occasionally.


    Just wanted to ask, if it?s a good idea to open starter motor and service it before it fails completely. Like there would be lot of carbon inside the starter motor and cleaning, greasing appropriate parts may remove any minor problems. Secondly, can we also clean the solenoid attached to the starter motor, as we already know that solenoid at times stuck up because of carbon between the moving body. Previously problem occurred with my CNG kit while conversion from Petrol to CNG. mechanic cleaned the low pressure solenoid valve and problem simply disappeared. So, I don?t think, there is any other failing part in solenoid.

    Car has already done 130,000km so do you think it?s a good idea to perform a detailed service of this part. Does detailed servicing and cleaning helps and avoids the problem which ca become prominent in future.

    Secondly as reminder, you suggested a member to attach a relay with the starter motor in-order to reduce the load on ignition wirings. I can?t exactly recall that thread but starter motor has three terminals positive from battery, negative which is grounded and third positive from ignition cables. Small current flows through the ignition which then directs heavy current from battery directly from solenoid into starter motor. So basically we don?t need to add another relay on starter on circuit near ignition as solenoid already has capacity to do the trick as being done by relays.

    Waiting for your reply, thanks
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    that little solenoid pulls about 20 amps to work, weak contacts at the key switch will fail. That is why you need it, If you have a toyota you have it from the factory, its either a large chunky white relay hanging from the shock tower or a square relay in the fuse box.
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    so Xulfiqar,

    is it advisable to open and service the Starter Motor, the most annoying part is that this is happening very rarely like once or max twice a week. but yes it is very annoying that what is the thing which is making this sound. anyways what i am planning to do is get the starter motor serviced, and also check the belt and tension.

    this sound was coming more frequently in winters than summers. so i am having big ?s on belt and also on idle tension pulley.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xulfiqar View Post
    that little solenoid pulls about 20 amps to work, weak contacts at the key switch will fail. That is why you need it, If you have a toyota you have it from the factory, its either a large chunky white relay hanging from the shock tower or a square relay in the fuse box.
    <!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:TrackMoves/> <w:TrackFormatting/> <wunctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <waveIfXMLInvalid>false</waveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <woNotPromoteQF/> <w:LidThemeOther>EN-US</w:LidThemeOther> <w:LidThemeAsian>X-NONE</w:LidThemeAsian> <w:LidThemeComplexScript>X-NONE</w:LidThemeComplexScript> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <wnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> <wontGrowAutofit/> <wplitPgBreakAndParaMark/> <wontVertAlignCellWithSp/> <wontBreakConstrainedForcedTables/> <wontVertAlignInTxbx/> <w:Word11KerningPairs/> <w:CachedColBalance/> </w:Compatibility> <w:BrowserLevel>MicrosoftInternetExplorer4</w:BrowserLevel> <m:mathPr> <m:mathFont m:val="Cambria Math"/> <m:brkBin m:val="before"/> <m:brkBinSub m:val="--"/> <m:smallFrac m:val="off"/> <m:dispDef/> <m:lMargin m:val="0"/> <m:rMargin m:val="0"/> <m:defJc m:val="centerGroup"/> <m:wrapIndent m:val="1440"/> <m:intLim m:val="subSup"/> <m:naryLim m:val="undOvr"/> </m:mathPr></w:WordDocument> </xml><![endif]--> Xulfiqar,

    Thank you so much for your replay as I did not knew about this and same reason I wondered why after all we need a relay. Anyway, is it advisable to service the starter motor once in 7-8 years and would cleaning things from inside will provide any help.

    Irfansiddiqui,
    Get hold of good electrician and ask him to service your starter motor, it may require few news parts where you can go along with him to scrap yard and get it from there for cheap.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by irfansiddique View Post
    From the last few days, occasionally during morning start-up my car makes a screeching sound after cranking, the battery is just 1 yr old Hankook dry cell.

    few people said that its the starter motor sound which needs servicing,

    few people said that starter solenoid connection issue because of which it is not releasing the current after engine cranking could be some mechanical or electrical issue.

    this problem is occurring very rarely but i am concern about the cause of this problem pls suggest me what are the things i should get inspected and is it advisable to service the Starter motor.
    Have u ever tried to accelerate in neutral just after starting the car??...if yes then what happened?....screeching sound increased, remained same or vanished??......if this sound increases with acceleration and remains there for sometime then vanished...then this is definitely coming from belt.....since u have said that this sound increases in winter this could also be the reason as the belt contracts and producing this sound.....

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by talhawaleed View Post
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    Thank you so much for your replay as I did not knew about this and same reason I wondered why after all we need a relay. Anyway, is it advisable to service the starter motor once in 7-8 years and would cleaning things from inside will provide any help.

    Irfansiddiqui,
    Get hold of good electrician and ask him to service your starter motor, it may require few news parts where you can go along with him to scrap yard and get it from there for cheap.
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    Let me answer my own question: went for Starter motor servicing and I exactly knew what I wanted as I have seen a video on you tube where mechanic said that 90 % of the problems related to starter motor are because of excessive carbon inside the starter motor its self. Mechanic argued before the start of work that it must be worn out bushes but I negated but agreed in the end that we will find out once we will open the unit. I worked closely with the mechanic for my own better understanding and once starter motor was removed and dismantled then bushes were found to be perfectly fine but there was indeed a lot of carbon inside it. Every part was successfully cleaned with help of petrol where care was taken that petrol does not makes its way inside the bearings. Later, Greece was applied to the moving appropriate parts the one needed it and starter motor was closed and tested on a test bench. Solenoid was completely isolated whereas it means that there was no way we could have opened and service it as manufacturer has sealed the unit. Slip rings was further cleaned with sand paper along with the carbon bushed and results were one click starting and tremendous improvement. I am simply loving this tremendous improvement which came at the cost of Rs 350 labor.

    I hope, this experience will help many and so its an advice that you don’t have to wait for the unit to fail completely before you plan to visit the mechanic. Do it once vehicle crosses One Lac kilometer as a precaution and definitely you will enjoy a long lasting drive.

  14. #14
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    Thanks for info dude will be going for services in 2 - 3 days. Will update u.

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    when servicing the starter, it is vital to only use non detergent mineral oil (or spindle oil) to lubricate the bushings (they are zeolite and drink up the oil), no grease should be applied to the overrunning clutch splines as dirt/muck/debris can get stuck to it and render it sticky and it may bind.

    You should always use glass based emery paper on the commutator and then clean the grooves with a pick or hacksaw. I also usually wound some sandpaper on the commutator to shape the new carbon brushes in place. (only applicable for installing new brushes)

    If your starter is a reduction drive type with a planet gear set or reduction gearset then only use a compatible grease in it. Which is usually synthetic with some teflon or such for extreme long service life.
    ZRS - Zulfiqar Racing Systems ..... - professionals at work - at crackwheels.com

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    @Xulfiqar
    As usual very informative + technical

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    finally, got the starter serviced today, man it was a one heck of a job to take out the starter in 8gen the servicing was not more then a 30 mins job but removal + installation was 4 hours job. asusual honda beauty too many things passing or assemblled at one location so take out was indeed a difficult job.

    anyways starter was opened it was full of carbon or dust deposits there was no a single sign of grease anywhere, alhamdulillah all parts, solenoid, carbon and other assembly was fine. so just washed it, oiled & greased it and installed it back.

    after installation starting is very smooth & quite.

    will look for that starting noise in the next week and keep you guys posted.

    once again thanks everybody for your help especially. talhawaleed & the tech guru Xulfiqar

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