You can get a car starter from the factory one of two ways, either new or remanufactured. It can be called one of several other names, too -- for example, a self-starter, a starter motor, or a cranking motor. Whichever type of starter your vehicle has, though, how it works isn't complicated.
What Does a Car Starter Do?
It uses a dedicated starter motor and starter relay to rotate your vehicle's engine. ("Cranks" is another way of putting it.) That's how your vehicle starts up and stays running.
Remote starters do the same job a little differently. No key turn is necessary. You simply tap a button on your smart key fob.
When your starter won't start your vehicle at all, however -- or, at least, it won't start it reliably -- it's usually because it's going out -- that is, if it hasn't gone bad already. Luckily, the causes of starter failure are easily identified. They include:
- Damaged parts
- Terminal corrosion
- Loose wires
Just as fortunately, it's pretty easy to spot starter issues, too. They're fairly obvious.
Signs of Starter Problems
- Being unable to start at all (even if your dash lights and displays are lit)
- Only being able to start in this or that gear or drive mode
- Failed jump-starts
- A smoking or an oil-covered starter
In any of these cases, your inertia system probably needs fixing. However, it's a good idea to do a full inspection first to see if your starter is actually the problem.
How to repair a starter is easy most of the time: just install another genuine one from your OEM. Doing that is your best option, as your brand designs starters that work specifically with your model right off the shelf. Our auto parts counter has a full catalog, and you can order from it right here online. Just be sure you're browsing by both make and model to get the right fit. We'll ship immediately, right to your home address.
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