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Old 04-21-2003, 02:18 AM   #1 (permalink)
Bad89stang
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Lightbulb identify the wires to starter solenoid

O.K. I re-located my starter solenoid inside the fenderwell on my 89 and I have wires crossed or not grounded somewhere. My battery is in my trunk so let's get that established (not like it matters).
What all should be grounded to the "-" side of the solenoid? Right now I just have the thick cable from the engine block. I have another wire grounding the engine to the frame. It has been this way for 6 months with no problems.

On the positive side I have the following:
1. Battery cable going to the trunk.
2. Heavy wire coming from my 130A alternator
3. Yellow wire from factory harness
4. Wire with silver box attached to it.

What color is the fuel pump relay wire? I am getting no pump sound when I turn on the key.
Where does the black wire with the two eyelets on it go? I know one ring is originally connected to the side of the engine bay wall. The other end I thought went to the "-" side of the solenoid. However, when I tried to crank the engine it fried that wire back to the fusible link. What am I missing here. I didn't change anything that I know of. I just moved the wires inside and then re-connected them. Obviously, something is jacked, because I can't get the pump to come on and I fried that wire. Please help. I don't need another electrical short SCARE!
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Old 04-21-2003, 01:02 PM   #2 (permalink)
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On the soleniod, one of the posts should just contain the wire running to the starter. On mine, it is the post that is furthest away from the front of the car. This post only receives juice when you are trying to start the car.

All other wires (except for the one that just "pushes" on to the little post on the top of the solenoid) should be connected to the other post, so that they can receive power whenever the car is on. Hope this helps.
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Old 04-21-2003, 03:03 PM   #3 (permalink)
Bad89stang
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Something doesn't sound right about that. One side has the negative cable attached to it. The other has the "+" wires. If you had the starter wire where the negative cable is then you would have problems right?
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Old 04-21-2003, 03:20 PM   #4 (permalink)
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none of the ford selenoids i've seen have ever had a negative battery wire connected to them.

pos from the battery to one side and the starter to the other.

the negative from the engine goes to the battery.


now i'm really confused.
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Old 04-21-2003, 03:33 PM   #5 (permalink)
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That makes sense, but what color is the wire going to the starter on the solenoid?
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Old 04-21-2003, 05:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I think it is usually black. If not, it should be the largest wire, as it has to handle the most current.

That wire that you believe is some type of negative cable may be the one that runs to the starter....that would be my guess.

Think about how the solenoid works. One post gets power only when you turn your key to start your car. The starter wire is on that post. When you let go of your key, power is taken away from that post and the starter disengages.
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Old 04-22-2003, 10:12 PM   #7 (permalink)
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1989 to 1993 comparison:


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Old 04-22-2003, 10:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I have recently done the same thing in my 93 and I am also having a problem. The only way I can get the starter to work, is if a connect both wires from the starter, (big one and little one) to the negative side of the solenoid. I if a hook the small starter wire up to the + side of the solenoid, it wont turn the engine over.

Does anybody know whats wrong?
What does the small wire do?
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Old 04-22-2003, 11:25 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Hey all, thanks for all the help, but I have long since fixed my problem. I was just mentally fried that day and wasn't thinking. The big black wire was my starter "+" wire and I was thinking that it was a ground. There is no "-" side on the solenoid! Duh! Anyways, I am now trying to find the ground for the ECM so that I can ground it. That is why I have no fuel pump.


93blkGTfun: Here is the answer to your question. The solenoid is nothing but a broken circuit. You have a terminal on the right and left side. The one with the battery cable attached is the side that has constant 12V of power. On the other side (it is not the negative side) you have your starter "+" wire that is only supposed to get 12V when the key is twisted all the way forward. The little bitty terminal in the middle of the two posts is where the small wire goes. It gets power when you turn the key and complets the broken circuit therefore giving the starter cable it's 12V to crank the motor. If you have all of the cables hooked up properly and the starter will not engage, then your solenoid is probably shot. Good luck and let me know if you need anymore help.
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Old 04-23-2003, 10:37 PM   #10 (permalink)
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OK here is the problem I am having.

After moving the solenoid to the inner fender I made a new starter cable, lengthening both the small and large wire that go to the starter. Where does the small wire that connects to the starter go? Not the wire that pushes on to the threaded terminal on top of the solenoid. The only way I can get the starter to work is if I hook the small and the big wire directly too the "-" side of the solenoid.
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Old 04-23-2003, 10:44 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Here is the wire I am talking about
Attached Images
File Type: jpg starter.jpg (19.2 KB, 46 views)
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Old 04-24-2003, 01:38 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Looks like you are talking about the ground for the starter. Remember, there is no "-" side on the starter solenoid. The ground for the starter should go to the frame somewhere. I have never had to replace mine before so I don't know. It does have to ground somewhere though. It definitely does not go to the solenoid! You should only have the "+" wire from the starter going to the side opposite of the battery. Easy enough?
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Old 04-24-2003, 08:10 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Yeah, after a brain fart last night I attached the small starter ground to the frame, and all I get is the solenoid clicking.

But the starter does work, If i hook it up wrong
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Old 04-24-2003, 08:57 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Look at my wiring diagram again.
The LITTLE wire and the BIG wire, BOTH are positive. Notice how I rewired the solenoid (not BIG out, but LITTLE out) and the BIG is right to the positive in side of the solenoid.
Trust me, it looks unusual, but it works.
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