Having starter issues, need help.

thatsnninety5

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So lets start off with I have a 1998 Ford Mustang GT (2v SOHC). Now recently I've been having starter issues. If my car is in park or neutral my starter stays engaged. Any other gear such as D, R, 2, and 1. It stops engaging. Now recently I was on my way home and I was sitting in traffic (Drive obviously) and the starter engages and starts grind off my flywheel. So, ASAP I pulled off and shut my car off. But when I shut my car off my starter was still getting power, even with my key out of the ignition. I disconnected my battery and it then stopped. Now, I gave it some time to cool down and after that I put my positive terminal back on the battery, the second I did that my starter got power, attempting to crank my car over, mind you, my keys were in my pocket. After this, I tried something else, before I hooked up the battery I took out my starter relay. Once I did that I put my positive terminal back on and the starter still was receiving power trying to crank my car. I've posted on other forum websites and got things such as, a bad starter solenoid, bad ignition switch, bad grounds and shorted fuse box with melted fuses. I am on my 4th starter with this stuff so I know its not just the solenoid, I would get new OEM starters from rockauto and other websites so I know I'm not getting cheap made junk starter from local auto parts stores such as autozone, o'rileys etc. Second off, I've replaced my ignition switch recently so it is brand new. I've checked all my grounds and they are all perfect and tighten down etc. Nor is my fuse box or any fuse melted or blown. Now, after this explaining here are my thoughts, I think I have a bad positive wire and it shorted out somewhere along the wire going to the starter, If anyone has had similar problems or would like to give their thoughts of what else I should try that be very much appreciated.
 

lwarrior1016

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There is a single large wire under the fuse box in the engine bay, it's got a black plastic connector on it. I would like to see you disconnect that and see if the starter still cranks over by itself when you put the battery terminal on. That's the signal wire to the starter that tells it to engage.
 
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thatsnninety5

thatsnninety5

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Okay, I shall take a look and post my feedback. what exactly does this look like. I dont want to go unplugging the wrong things
 

95opal

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Definitely in the harness to starter.
I would just pull the harness apart and inspect it.
 
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thatsnninety5

thatsnninety5

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I unplugged it and put the positive cable back on and it didn’t try to crank. I then plugged it back in and put the positive back on but it didn’t try to crank that time. What could be the issue?
 

cobrajeff96

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That wire should go all the way to the ignition cylinder harness below the steering wheel. Probe it end to end, or at least segment-by-segment to make sure it has continuity. Also, it could be as simple as a nut loosened on either of the starter connections. It is a thing and it happened to my car once.
 
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thatsnninety5

thatsnninety5

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try taking your horn relay or another relay out and swapping them and see if it still does it.
I dont have a horn relay, so I took out the relay for the starter and tried to used my horn. It worked, so that cancels out bad relay.
 

ttocs

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Do you have a voltmeter and know how to use it? When you put the relay back in with power hooked up, do you hear/feel it click? We need to figure out if the relay is getting a starter signal or if it is shorted out after the relay. Do you have and know how to use a voltmeter? If so check pins 85/86 on the relay output in the fusebox and see if you have 12v on them.
 
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thatsnninety5

thatsnninety5

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That wire should go all the way to the ignition cylinder harness below the steering wheel. Probe it end to end, or at least segment-by-segment to make sure it has continuity. Also, it could be as simple as a nut loosened on either of the starter connections. It is a thing and it happened to my car once.
what exactly came loose on it? The positive and negative that come from the battery connected to the starter? Because if so I always made sure they were tight, especially when this started to happen.
 
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thatsnninety5

thatsnninety5

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Do you have a voltmeter and know how to use it? When you put the relay back in with power hooked up, do you hear/feel it click? We need to figure out if the relay is getting a starter signal or if it is shorted out after the relay. Do you have and know how to use a voltmeter? If so check pins 85/86 on the relay output in the fusebox and see if you have 12v on them.
I don’t have a voltmeter but I know how to use one and can get access to one. I do not feel or hear a click when a relay is put in but I wasnt really listening or feeling for one so I didnt really listen for it or feel for it. But I will try and see if I feel or hear one.
 
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thatsnninety5

thatsnninety5

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So, turns out I didnt need the positive wire. But what I did need was a new transmission wiring harness. A while back say 3-4 months ago my transmission wiring burnt up in a certain spot because it wasnt routed right and was up against my exhaust. So I redid the section of wiring that was burnt up and it was fine until I accidentally routed it the same way and it was in the exhaust again and burnt up. Now this was why my starter was acting up because I fixed the starter issues with this transmission wiring harness. Now I assume it was my neutral safety switch causing this stuff with my starter to happen because like I said before it would only do it in park and neutral until it did it in drive. So to sum this up, the transmission wiring harness was the underlying issues with my starter acting up so I replaces the harness but getting one from a junkyard. Now the starter hasnt acted up. BUT NOW I HAVE ANOTHER ISSUE. So, this issues happened with my old transmission wire harness as well as this new one (just happened earlier, of course on thanksgiving) Here is what happens, the car runs perfectly and cranks with no issues. All of the sudden I shut the car off and when I go back to crank it over, completely dead battery. My lights work, my horn works, all the that. When I put the car into accessory the gauge reads in the middle so right be the “R” and “M” in the word “NORMAL”. but as soon as I go to crank it just drains the battery and clicks as I try to crank. Ive tried jumping my car with another, doesnt do anything at all. Ive left a battery charger/jump pack on it over night and tried to crank it in the morning, nothing. The one way I found to fix it was get a new battery. So this first happened about a month ago. I got a brand new battery and put it in. Now the same thing happened to me again, with this brand new battery. Like I said jump packs, battery chargers and jumping it from another car doesnt do anything. Now I have to get another battery after I just got a brand new one less than 20 days ago. What could be causing this? I dont think it has anything to do with what I repaired What could be causing my battery just to kill out like this and nothing helping it except getting a new battery?
 

cobrajeff96

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Stock type battery in stock location? Any modifications done to the charging system as a whole, to include anything battery related? Engine rotating assembly for that matter?

It almost sounds like everything is fine until the car is fully warmed up.
 

ttocs

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I had that same harness get on my exhaust and just be happy that it only melted it and didn't catch it on fire. I ended up rerunning my wiring inside the car so it came out on the other side of the exhaust which was some work, but should have been done the first time. After that any wiring anywhere near the exhaust or trans gets covered in heat wrap.

The battery should be able to be exchanged if you just got it. It is possible that you either got a battery that wasn't perfect or that it just got deep cycled/ruined by the wiring. Otherwise at this point I am not sure what else to suggest.
 
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thatsnninety5

thatsnninety5

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Stock type battery in stock location? Any modifications done to the charging system as a whole, to include anything battery related? Engine rotating assembly for that matter?

It almost sounds like everything is fine until the car is fully warmed up.
Yes, stock location for the battery, im the engine bay next to fuse box. I put in a new alternator a while back say, 2 months ago but other than that as well as that new battery just from 20 days ago. It is just really weird because I will leave my house and stop places, shut the car off multiple times a day and then it just randomly happened. So in other words, I dont just start it, drive it to one place, then it be toast.
 

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