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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,
Want to make sure my diagnosis is correct before dishing out dollars to fix the situation. I have a 2004 330ci with 87k miles that runs fine if you push start it. Been in the no crank no start thread and also noticed from jfoj that there is potential for 2003-2004 cars to experience premature starter failure and I think I may have one. I turn the key and nothing happens, lights dim then reset. In the hidden obd menu - 126 voltage drops to 122 upon trying to start the car.

I took apart the air box to get a voltage reading at the starter, I get all the same numbers at back of alternator, battery positive post, and the hot wire at the starter. When I crank I get voltage at the solenoid terminal ever so briefly and then the system kind of dies. I took a video, but won’t let me post it. It is weird because at the solenoid terminal I am getting a reading under 10 volts and it barely lasts a fraction of a second before the reading goes away. So I am inclined to believe it’s the starter. The car maybe has been developing a slow eagerness to start.

I did swap out for new battery as mine is maybe 5 years old, but same effects.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My ex has my second key ha

so no luck with trying a second key…

I am fairly certain it is the starter - I also jumped the terminals to try and get the starter to spin and nothing happens no spinning no solenoid activation … just want to wait another day before I have to craw under the car and deal with the replacement !!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
had some more time to play around with the car today.

had it hooked up to a second car whilr running, voltage at 13.2 no crank no start. all fuses good - solenoid terminals at the starter gave 12.34v upon turning the key for start. ignition switch opened up and tested for voltage all good there..

im stressed because i dont know which way i should go for taking the starter out.. everything points to the starter. idk if its better doing its from the top removing the manifold or doing the bottom and being on my back...
 

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when I crank - I get voltage at the solenoid terminal ever so briefly and then the system kind of dies
what do you mean?
I am fairly certain it is the starter
Any evident?
it it weird however because at the solenoid terminal - I am getting a reading under 10 volts and it barely lasts a fraction of a second before the reading goes away. so I am inclined to believe it’s the starter
why, because the bad ass starter eats the 2.6v and only 10v remained?
I am fairly certain it is the starter - I also jumped the terminals to try and get the starter to spin and nothing happens
Terminals (plural)? What exactly are they and how did you jump them? Did you count the big bolt/nut/cable as one terminal or only the small wire/connector?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I put a flat head screwdriver from one large nut terminal to the other terminal and nothing happened.

I had a donor car providing 13.4 volts to the car (wire jumpers) and had thevolt meter on solenoid terminal and got 12.34 volts during cranking.

No movement or clicks or any of that sort from the starter.
 

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I put a flat head screwdriver from one large nut terminal to the other terminal and nothing happened.
Interesting. So you jumped the supply 12v big cable to the big nut holding the bared braid cable and the starter motor didn't scream at high speed. This means the starter motor brushes are gone. But the solenoid should still move and make the click noise when it moved the pinion gear to the flywheel teeth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Para 2 above seems to contradict para 3.
what I mean to say is I am seeing voltage, but hear no movement of any kind from the solenoid.

I am on the terminal C from the no crank no start thread, the tiny nut or solenoid terminal. I get voltage during cranking, but no noise or click.

when I jump the 12v to the other side (the two large terminals) I get no movement of the starter either.

I have 12.2 volts at the battery terminals, alternator & the starter.
 
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