GM Malibu/Cutlass 1997-2000

Starter

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TESTING



Voltage Drop Test

NOTE
The battery must be in good condition and fully charged prior to performing this test.

  1. Disable the ignition system by unplugging the coil pack. Verify that the vehicle will not start.
  2.  
  3. Connect a voltmeter between the positive terminal of the battery and the starter B+ circuit.
  4.  
  5. Turn the ignition key to the START position and note the voltage on the meter.
  6.  
  7. If voltage reads 0.5 volts or more, there is high resistance in the starter cables or the cable ground, repair as necessary. If the voltage reading is ok proceed to the next step.
  8.  
  9. Connect a voltmeter between the positive terminal of the battery and the starter M circuit.
  10.  
  11. Turn the ignition key to the START position and note the voltage on the meter.
  12.  
  13. If voltage reads 0.5 volts or more, there is high resistance in the starter. Repair or replace the starter as necessary.
  14.  


NOTE
Many automotive parts stores have starter bench testers available for use by customers. A starter bench test is the most definitive way to determine the condition of your starter.

REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



2.4L Engine
  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable at the battery.
  2.  
  3. Detach the air inlet duct from the throttle body.
  4.  
  5. Position a drain pan under the oil filter, then remove the oil filter.
  6.  
  7. Remove the top starter bolt.
  8.  
  9. Raise and safely support the vehicle.
  10.  
  11. Remove the lower starter retaining bolt.
  12.  
  13. If necessary, position the engine wiring harness aside.
  14.  
  15. Position the starter to enable access to the solenoid wiring, then detach the wiring.
  16.  
  17. Remove the starter from the vehicle.
  18.  

To install:

  1. Raise the starter to the vehicle, then attach the wiring.
  2.  
  3. Position the starter, then secure using the lower starter bolt. Tighten to 66 ft. lbs. (90 Nm).
  4.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. When installing the starter on the 2.4L engine, tighten the mounting bolts to 66 ft. lbs. (90 Nm)

  1. If moved, reposition the engine wiring harness.
  2.  
  3. Attach the solenoid electrical connectors.
  4.  
  5. Carefully lower the vehicle.
  6.  
  7. Install the top starter bolt, then tighten to 66 ft. lbs. (90 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Replace the oil filter.
  10.  
  11. Fasten the air inlet duct to the throttle body.
  12.  
  13. Connect the negative battery cable.
  14.  
  15. Check the oil level and add if necessary.
  16.  
  17. Start the engine, recheck the oil level and add if necessary.
  18.  

3.1L Engine
  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Raise and safely support the front of the vehicle securely on jackstands.
  4.  
  5. Remove the lower closeout panel.
  6.  
  7. Remove the electrical leads.
  8.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Two electrical leads connect to the starter solenoid. The larger one has battery power as long as the battery is connected. The smaller one only has power when the key is turned to START

  1. Remove the starter motor to engine bolts, then remove the starter from the vehicle.
  2.  

To install:

  1. Install the starter. Position one engine-to-starter bolt in the lower bolt hole, then finger-start the bolt.
  2.  
  3. Connect the electrical leads to the starter. Tighten the cable to the solenoid to 106 inch lbs. (12 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Install the starter-to-engine bolts and tighten to 37 ft. lbs. (50 Nm)
  6.  
  7. Install the lower closeout panel.
  8.  
  9. Lower the vehicle.
  10.  
  11. Connect the negative battery cable.
  12.  

SOLENOID REPLACEMENT





Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Remove the nut attaching the solenoid cable



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Typical starter solenoid components

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Remove the starter motor from the vehicle and place on a clean work surface.
  4.  
  5. Disconnect the solenoid-to-starter lead wire.
  6.  
  7. Remove the solenoid mounting bolts and slide out the solenoid. Pull out the solenoid torsion spring, if so equipped. On some models, it may be necessary to remove the starter assembly through bolts from the yoke to remove the solenoid.
  8.  
  9. If equipped with shims between the solenoid and starter, remove and place aside.
  10.  

To install:

  1. Install the solenoid with any adjustment shims.
  2.  
  3. Torque the bolts to 15 ft. lbs. (20 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Connect the starter-to-solenoid electrical lead.
  6.  
  7. Install the starter through-bolts if removed.
  8.  
  9. Install the starter motor.
  10.  
  11. Check for proper operation.
  12.  

 
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