Anonymous asked in Cars & TransportationMaintenance & Repairs · 1 decade ago

What can cause my starter to drag only when engine is cold?

97 Accura, v-6. Battery just check out okay on a meter, and connections are tight-no corrosion. Ignition switch and starter replaced about 6 months ago. Battery is 13 months old. Outside temp-80 at night and 92 in day.

In mornings the starter will drag slowly, but usually will eventually crank. When Car is hot-starter cranks over fast-like normal. What could it be? Could it be a looose cable on the starter, or could the starter be bad already? A new starter would be about $500-thats why I am trying to fix this myself. This is not a gas problem or firing problem. It has only to do with turning the engine over to start the car. Thanks for ideas.


Oil wt. is 10w30, its changed or a regular basis.

Update 2:

Okay-I just checked voltage on battery is 12.6, it drops to 11.2 when cranking hot.

I will dicsonnect battery over night and we will see what morning brings---thanks a whole bunch.

Update 3:

Okay-this morn I re-connected battery and car cranks okay. Volatge is 12.4, then drops to 10.9 at cranking.

I will begin to look for a drain-I may have to ask how later if I can not figure it out. Thanks everyone.

I will give an update lated whin I locate the problem---thanks all.

Update 4:

BTW- everyone ask about an amp or pda or woofer-none of that-this car is still stock like I got it about 5 years ago.

7 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The symptoms you describe sounds more like a battery problem.

    But not necessarily a defective battery. it sounds like you have a parasitic draw somewhere in your car, and it is draining the battery overnight. After you get it started, the alternator recharges the battery enough to crank over "normal".

    TRY THIS---->

    Disconnect the battery the last thing before you go to bed. This way, the battery cannot discharge due to anything but the battery itself. In the morning when you try to start it, connect the battery and see if it will start normally.

    If it does, you have found what your problem is with very little effort spent.

    Now all you have to do is locate the drain.

    Easiest way is to connect a meter (AMP) to the system, and begin to remove fuses until you see the draw go away. Now you know what circuit to look in.

    Do you have an Amp?

    Do you have any accessories like a PDA charger or computer inverter that doesn't get turned off with the key?

    How about a trunk lite that stays on all night (parking on a steep incline will allow the little mercury switch to stay on).

    Good Luck

    Source(s): ASE Tech
  • 1 decade ago

    Here's a thought.

    If you figure after running your engine for a while, the alternator charges your battery up to full charge.

    Within about an hour, there has not been much of a chance for the battery to "draw down" due to a light draw on the electrical system.

    However, after an extended period, the battery voltage drops due to one of two things.

    A) There is something using up the power in the battery while parked.

    B) Your battery has a cell that is going bad.

    More than likely, you have something hooked up like a Sub woofer amp that is not wired correctly. ie; No remote switch to turn off the power when not in use.

    Also, check to see if your trunk light is on, or glove box.

    Just checking static (just sitting there) voltage is not an accurate method of determining weather or not a battery is good.

    Have someone check the battery voltage durring starting.

    It should drop to around 11 volts. If it drops below 10 volts, you have a bad battery.

    Check the voltage after running the car for a while (off)

    It should be around 13 volts.

    In the morning, check the voltage. It should be above 12 volts.

    I doubt you have a bad starter.

  • 1 decade ago

    You need to check a number of things here. Check your battery cable connections for corrosion, clean them and re-check the problem. The next problem involves the starter motor bushings. When they get worn and the temp of the engine is cool, the starter will drag. You can replace the bushings in your starter, or go to a salvage yard and purchase a starter---check craigslist.

    The next involves taking the car to a shop and having the electrical system checked, and the ECU. Start cheap and work your way to the expensive stuff.

  • 1 decade ago

    well he has a good question but the battery could be the culprit, what you need to do is let it sit over night and then do a starter load test on it in the morning. if you have a meter you can do this but the readins wont be very accurate, but if the battery drops below 10.5 volts then its a good chance the battery is bad or defective. but it can also mean you have a very high amp draw from your starter. this kind of test you need a VAT 40. but do this test and if the battery drops below 10.5 volts have it tested properly and go from there

    drops during cranking, i should proofread better

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  • 1 decade ago

    Battery test is free at Pep Boys .. most time's we'll also test the starter and alternator at the same time ... and $500 dam that's some what high a re-manufactured installed should be about half that or less.

    Source(s): Pep Boys (tech)
  • 5 years ago

    20 w 50

  • 1 decade ago

    what weight oil is in the car?

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