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Most starters are marked with a + (positive) and a - (negative) on the terminals themselves,just like your battery. Usually the larger terminal where the battery cable connects to the starter is the positive terminal. .

On a most starters both posts are hot(+) and the casing is grounded(-) .Usually the bigger post is a direct wire from the battery and the smaller post is a remote wire from the starter switch.

Follow the positive battery cable wire (+) to the other end, that should lead you there. Because it will be connected to the starter solenoid. Please take note, a solenoid mounted on a starter has no ground wire, but a solenoid separated from the starter and mounted on the firewall does.

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โˆ™ 2015-07-15 20:50:52
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Q: How do you know which terminal on a starter is positive and which one is ground?
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Related Questions

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How to recharge a motorcycle battery?

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Your 1990 Cadillac Sedan deville 4.5 v8 has a dead battery and the hood release will not release and you need to know how you can open the hood?

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On your 1989 camaro rs you turn the key and nothing happens it wont start but when you jump out the starter it fires right up what could it be?

Battery Or The Terminals Are Not Making Good Contact And Need To Be Cleaned. I Would Test This First. Next Your Starter Could Have A Few Problems. Worn Bushings, Brushes, Weak Armature, Solenoid. Ect. Check Out Your Battery And Battery Terminals. This May Take Care Of It. One Other Thing Have Your Alternator Tested. You Can Have This Done At Most Garrages Without Removing It. In order to correct a problem, you MUST KNOW WHAT IS CAUSING THAT PROBLEM. This requires an analysis of the symptoms, and an understanding of how components operate in order to first eleminate all those things which COULD NOT cause the symptoms. Then continue to eleminate, one by one, the other components which COULD cause the symptoms. If I understand your question, you say that when "you "'jump' the starter, it fires right up..." Since you didn't mention otherwise, I have to assume you used the battery in the vehicle to jump the starter. This suggests SEVERAL things: 1. There is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING WRONG WITH THE STARTER, not bushings, brushes, or weak armature. IF ANY of these were the problem, then "jumping out the starter" would not cause it to "fire right up..." 2. The same is true for "checking the battery." The battery is fine, or "jumping' the starter would not fire it right up. Also, to jump, requires clamping a jumper cable[s] onto the battery terminal cable clamp[s] which are clamped onto the battery terminal posts, suggesting that there is nothing wrong with either the terminal posts, or the connection of the terminal clamps to the posts. 3. Since the battery is in good strong shape [obviously, as it cranks the engine, and "it fires right up"], there is NOTHING WRONG WITH THE ALTERNATOR. There is no need to have the alternator tested, unless you just feel like taking the time, and spending the money a garage will charge. Now, let's analyze what COULD cause the ONLY symptom you mention: "...turn the key and NOTHING happens..." Consider WHAT turning the key DOES. On your vehicle, turning the key completes a circuit from the battery positive terminal post to the start terminal in the ignition switch, then via a small wire to a small terminal on the starter solenoid on the starter. Then current is fed through the coil [activating the coil] inside the solenoid to ground, and thence back to the negative terminal post on the battery. When the solenoid coil is activated, it becomes an electromagnet, which pulls the plunger in, which does two things: 1] engages the starter gear teeth into the teeth on the engine flywheel, and 2] closes a very heavy duty contact switch inside the solenoid which connects the positive battery terminal [via a heavy cable (positive)] to the starter winding, causing the starter to turn, cranking the engine. SINCE NOTHING HAPPENS when the key is turned, it is concluded that the problem is an "OPEN CIRCUIT" condition in this circuit [battery positive terminal to starter solenoid. Ther are several things which could cause such an open circuit: 1. A broken or cut wire. 2. A disconnection at any terminal[s] in the circuit. 3. A failed fuse or fusible link in the circuit. 4. A failed, defective contact within the ignition switch. 5. A broken wire [very small] in the coil winding inside the solenoid. The next step is to use a multi-meter or test light to check for and confirm the presense of 12 volts at the small wire terminal [coil terminal] ON the starter solenoid. To make this test, the STARTER SWITCH MUST BE HELD IN the START position WHILE the test is being made. IF there IS voltage AT THIS TERMINAL, when the key is in the START position, then the failure, and your problem, IS INSIDE the STARTER SOLENOID. IF there is NOT 12 volts in the above test, then the problem is an open somewhere else in the circuit, somewhere between the battery positive terminal and the coil terminal on the solenoid. The next step is to use the multi-meter or test light to check for 12 volts at the input terminal on the ignition switch. If there is NO voltage there, then the "open" in the circuit is between there and the positive terminal on the battery. If there IS voltage there, then check for voltage at the OUTPUT terminal ["Starter" TERMINAL] of the ignition switch, WITH THE IGNITION SWITCH HELD IN THE "START" POSITION. If there is voltage there, the ignition switch is OK, and the open circuit problem is in the wire between the ignition switch and the solenoid coil terminal. All of this is very tedious and time consuming, THAT'S WHY auto service work at a shop is so expensive. There is another way to approach the solution to this problem. I call it the "SHOTGUN METHOD," and consists of simply replacing components [ignition switch, starter solenoid, and starter] until the problem goes away. There are TWO FLAWS in this approach: 1. It is VERY EXPENSIVE TO UNNECESSARILY REPLACE these parts, and 2. After doing so, if the problem is NOT SOLVED, then that tells you the problem is an open in the wiring circuit, and you STILL HAVE TO TROUBLESHOOT the entire wiring circuit.

What is the difference between a starter relay and a starter solenoid?

On my 1995 Ford Explorer , as far as I know , the starter solenoid is mounted on the starter and the starter relay ( which most people just refer to as the solenoid ) is mounted near my battery and has the positive battery cable connected to it ( a relay is a low voltage switch ) P.S. I'm not a mechanic / technician