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How to replace starter soleniod contacts


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Right thought i would do this write up to help anyone else that comes across this problem, basically the fault i had was my car would start normally most of the time but every now and then would not crank over whatsoever, id have to just keep trying and eventually would fire up as per normal, battery and alternator were replaced previously so had eliminated them as the issue. the car i did this on is a 1996 Version 2 WRX.

Step 1:

remove starter motor, can do without removing anything else but makes it way easier if you have access to a hoist so you can get it from underneath.

there are 2 wires you need to remove on the soleniod, one has a connector which simply unclips, the other is the main power feed which has a 14mm nut to undo. make sure you disconnect battery first obviously. then there are 2 bolts holding the starter to the block, one is 14mm the other 17mm, once they are undone the starter will drop out.

Step 2:

put the starter on a clear work bench, you will see on the back of the soleniod there are 3x 8mm bolts holding a cover on, undo those 3 bolts, pull the cover off.



You will see a buzzy looking thing poking out, this is the plunger, you can grab it and pull it straight out, there is a spring on the other end of it, dont lose that.



Step 3:

remove the outter contacts, one on each side of the soleniod housing, pretty self explanitory this part. you will see a stud that goes through each of the contacts, undo the nut on the outside of the housing and they will slide out.



Step 4:

You will need to reuse these studs for the new contacts so knock them out with a hammer or something, they come out easy as. you will see the contacts are actually slightly slotted, this is so that you have some adjustment to get both the new contacts at the same level so that the plunger will hit them both evenly, takes a bit of mucking round to get it right but i imagine its quite important. first time i put my new ones in the plunger was only touching one contact so obviously it wont start like that. make sure you get it as perfect as you can as this will stop the contacts arching so much and burning out. sorry i havent got any pics from here on.

Step 5:

With the new contacts fitted, get your new plunger, make sure the spring is either still sitting it the solenoid or swap it over from the old plunger, now slot it back into the soleniod housing and refit the cover and 3x 8mm bolts. the rest im sure you can work out ;)

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 leggyfreak said:

where can i get the contacts from i want to do this on mine seems like a cheaper option thatn a new one

i got mine from Partmaster retail was about $65 +gst for the 2 contacts and the plunger. i didnt pay that much tho ;)

subaru couldnt give me a price, said they had no listing for these bits.

any auto electrician should have these in stock tho.

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 DRFVDR said:

u will find that one of the contacts is thinner than the other and the circular loose contactor will only pivot so far and then wont contact properly

I also give the centre contactor a wee file as well :)

correct mine were both very worn and pitted but one more than the other. ah i didnt think to file that part, didnt do research before i did it lol.

and yea ichi ban you the man ;D ;D

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