Car starter failure is a common phenomenon for most car owners, and they always face a hard time dealing with this issue. In such cases, hitting the starter with a hammer might fix things; but sometimes, it might confuse you about where to hit the starter with a hammer.
It’s typically on the main body of the starter. But make sure that you don’t hit on wires, battery cables, and fuses.
Not everyone is an expert with vehicle parts, so you need to know the proper techniques to hit the starter.
This article can be a complete guideline for you to deal with starter problems; so that the situation does not get worse because of your improper actions.
Why do You need to Hit the Starter?
Basically, the starter remains attached to the engine of a vehicle that rotates the internal combustion engine. It is an electrical motor and works as an initiator for the engine of a vehicle. When you put the key in the ignition, the starter activates after getting power from the main battery of the vehicle.
Often, starters can get rusty because of using for a long time, or they can also get inactive because of the lack of necessary lubrication. In such cases, the bristles of the starter might get stuck in the rust and become inactive.
As a result, your vehicle engine will face difficulty while starting. The engine will take a long time to start, or it might not start at all. In this case, you need to take the necessary steps to re-activate the starter in order to start the engine.
Using a hammer and hitting on the starter is the most common method of dealing with starter problems. People who are experienced with vehicle malfunctions are definitely aware of this method.
Basically, hitting the starter with a hammer can make the rusty bristles move and initiate the vehicle engine.
That is why using a hammer on starters is a widely known method for fixing starter issues. But often, people are not aware of the correct technique of using a hammer on starters. As a result, the bristles can get damaged, and the condition of the starter can worsen than before.
How Do You Detect a Faulty Starter?
For using a hammer on the starter of your vehicle, you need to detect the starter fault first. If you are unable to detect the issue, it will be difficult to decide where you should hit with the hammer.
Here we have discussed the common symptoms of a faulty starter. From there, you can detect whether your starter has issues with starting the engine or not.
Taking Note of Whirring and Clicking Noises
Generally, starting a vehicle’s engine does not create any unfamiliar sound. But if the starter of your vehicle has issues while starting, you might notice sounds of whirring or clicking.
Besides, you may also take note of sparking sounds caused by faulty wires and cables. In this case, you should look for the spark cables and take the necessary actions immediately.
Delay to Start the Engine
A bad starter faces difficulties while starting the vehicle, even if you notice that the starter is functioning.
When you put your key in the ignition, the starter will start functioning by initiating the engine. But you might notice that the engine is not starting and taking a lot of time. In the worst case, your engine might not start at all.
Damaged Wires and Fuses
If the wires and fuses related to the starter are faulty or damaged, the starter will not initiate the engine start.
Often, the starter wires get damaged due to long-time use. They get rusty and break at certain points. Besides, electric sparks can also affect the fuses. In case your engine is not working, check the starter wires and fuses closely.
Loose Cables Near the Battery Terminal
Due to temperature fluctuations, the electric cables of the battery terminal can be too loose or too tight. It negatively affects the starter, and starting the engine gets difficult.
If the cables are too loose, the power from the battery can not flow simultaneously to the starter. On the other hand, too-tight cables can break due to overload, which affects the function of the starter.
Fixing the Starter with A Hammer
When your starter is showing symptoms of functional instability, you can fix it with the help of a hammer.
Basically, a gentle tap with a hammer can reconnect the related parts and cables of the starter. As a result, the brushes will function by electrical contact, and the starter will activate.
For activating the starter with a hammer, you need to follow the instructions stated below.
Always tap with the hammer gently on the starter. If you hit too hard, the starter body might get damaged. Not just one tap can make any difference; you should tap at one point for several minutes.
Hitting on the Starter Body
There are certain points on the vehicle starter that you need to hit with a hammer. Because tapping with the hammer helps when you are tapping on the main body of the starter. But if hitting on the top does not help, you can hit on the side of the starter for a better outcome.
So, the tapping should be well placed for efficient results. Do not use the hammer on the starter wires, battery cables, and fuses, as they might get damaged easily.
Checking the Engine While Holding the Key on the Ignition
You should hold your key on the ignition while fixing the starter as the engine will start only after you use the ignition. When you are hitting on the starter, you need to continuously check whether the vehicle engine is starting or not.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Where should you tap on a starter?
Generally, you should tap on the starter gently for a couple of minutes. Tap on the main starter body with a hammer, and do not hit too hard as it might damage the body. Avoid hitting on the cables and the plastic covering as it won’t help to activate the starter.
- Can you activate a starter with a hammer?
If your starter has issues while starting the vehicle’s engine, you can fix it with the help of a hammer. This is one of the most used methods for dealing with starter problems. Hitting gently on the starter can reconnect the electrical wires and activate the starter.
- How can you test a starter?
Connect the starter with the vehicle battery and use the ignition to start the engine. If you do not hear the engine starting noise or notice a delay while starting, your starter is having issues with the connections.
Using a hammer to fix your starter is a quick remedy but not a permanent solution. For every vehicle owner, it is essential to know where to hit the starter with a hammer so that you can deal with the minor malfunctions.
But for more serious issues with the starter, visit a professional auto mechanic for a proper inspection and repair.