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Old 03-14-2008, 11:04 AM   #1 (permalink)
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replace starter

I may need to replace my starter on a 2003 i just purchased. Is this something i can do myself or should i go to the pros?
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Old 03-14-2008, 11:39 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Thumbs up Should be DIY...

it should be a DIY job. A couple of bolts and a couple of cables. Don't forget to unhook the battery before starting the work. You might invest $70 in the shop manual. It covers EVERYTHING and you can decide if it's at your level of expertise, and the money you save on labor doing the first job yourself will pay for it. Let us know how it goes.
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Old 03-14-2008, 11:51 AM   #3 (permalink)
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sequence of events...

1. Makie sure you have the anti-theft codes for the radio and nav system, then write down the frequencies for the radio's preset buttons.

2. Disconnect the negative cable from the battery, then disconnect the positive cable.

3. remove the battery

4. remove the battery base.

5. remove the harness clamps holding the cables to the starter.

6. disconnect the starter cable from the rear of the starter solenoid, then disconnect the blk/whi wire from the other terminal.

7. remove the two bolts holding the started, then remove the starter.

8. install in the reverse order of removal. make sure the crimped side of the ring terminal is facing out (because it makes the terminal fit flush against the solenoid. put it on the way you took it off)

9 connect the battery positive cable and negative cable to the battery.

10. start the engine to make sure the starter works properly.

11. enter the anti theft codes for the radio and the nav system.

12. enter the radio station presets and set the clock.

13. re set the power window control unit by turning the ignition switch OFF. then turn the ignition ON (II). Lower the driver's window all the way down by pushing the driver's switch to the second detent, when the window reaches the bottom, hold the driver's window switch in the DOWN position for 2 seconds. Raise the driver's window all the way up without stopping by pulling the driver's switch to the second detent; when the window reaches the top, hold the driver's window switch in the UP position for 2 seconds. If the window does not work in AUTO reset the power window control unt again according the the above instructions.

EASY JOB. when you're done have a been a pat yourself on the back for saving a bunch of $$$!!
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Old 03-14-2008, 12:24 PM   #4 (permalink)
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repair manual

Where can i get a repair manual? Is the Chiltons good enough or do i need to go with Acura manual
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Old 03-14-2008, 12:44 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Talking Here's the site...

www.helminc.com

I think the cost is around $70 for the shop manual. It's the actual Acura shop manual. Will be delivered to your door in a couple of days and will last you longer than you have your car.
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Old 03-14-2008, 03:24 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Just curious, why you want to replace it? What's wrong with it? Normally the starter is very durable and don't need replacement for, say, 10 years, or 150K miles, based on my experience.

And even if it's bad, normally it's just the carbon brushes that need to be replaced. Probably $5.00 a pair.
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Old 03-15-2008, 10:01 AM   #7 (permalink)
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i have a screech sound when i start

each morning when i start it makes this sound and someone mentioned it may be the beginning of a starter problem. Just planning ahead.
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Old 04-29-2008, 08:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: sequence of events...

Quote:
Originally posted by ROTORRAY
1. Makie sure you have the anti-theft codes for the radio and nav system, then write down the frequencies for the radio's preset buttons.

2. Disconnect the negative cable from the battery, then disconnect the positive cable.

3. remove the battery

4. remove the battery base.

5. remove the harness clamps holding the cables to the starter.

6. disconnect the starter cable from the rear of the starter solenoid, then disconnect the blk/whi wire from the other terminal.

7. remove the two bolts holding the started, then remove the starter.

8. install in the reverse order of removal. make sure the crimped side of the ring terminal is facing out (because it makes the terminal fit flush against the solenoid. put it on the way you took it off)

9 connect the battery positive cable and negative cable to the battery.

10. start the engine to make sure the starter works properly.

11. enter the anti theft codes for the radio and the nav system.

12. enter the radio station presets and set the clock.

13. re set the power window control unit by turning the ignition switch OFF. then turn the ignition ON (II). Lower the driver's window all the way down by pushing the driver's switch to the second detent, when the window reaches the bottom, hold the driver's window switch in the DOWN position for 2 seconds. Raise the driver's window all the way up without stopping by pulling the driver's switch to the second detent; when the window reaches the top, hold the driver's window switch in the UP position for 2 seconds. If the window does not work in AUTO reset the power window control unt again according the the above instructions.

EASY JOB. when you're done have a been a pat yourself on the back for saving a bunch of $$$!!
RotorRay,

My 03 starter has been making this wizzing sound every morning after the X starts and I'm getting tired of it, so a new starter will be an upcoming project.

Since you are the expert I have a couple questions.

1. It's easier to get into the starter from up top than it is going underneath?

2. The wizzing I get is only when the vehicle is cold. Starts just fine when the vehicle is warm. Did you see anything on your solenoid when you pulled yours off that looked odd? Worn teeth? Did the flywheel teeth look good?

4. Did you consider trying and repair, or just not worth it and replace the unit? I see a replacement starter is about $188.

Appreciate your thoughts.
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Old 04-30-2008, 04:19 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Hello there, I'm relatively new here and came accross this thread... I'm experiencing this same problem with my '03 and I'm curious as well to your outcome... :anxiously awaiting:
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Old 04-30-2008, 07:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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First off...

I AM NO EXPERT. I know a LITTLE about a lot. An EXPERT knows a LOT about a LITTLE. Anyway, seeing that the directions indicate taking the battery base out I would assume that you remove the starter from above. I've never done an MDX starter but it's just a couple of nuts and cables so it can't be that hard. If you're going to the trouble of taking the thing off my choice would be to replace as much as you can while you have the thing out. I guess you could nickle-and-dime it and replace only what is worn but the worn parts are just as old as the rest of it and the other parts are probably getting ready to go, too, so why fool with it. Replace it all and you'll be done for a while, and it will be reliable again (or at least I hope it will). Let us know how it goes for you. I, too, have an '03 with the original starter but no symptoms of any problems. With my luck now that I wrote that last sentence the thing will probablly fail tonight.
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Old 04-30-2008, 08:28 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: First off...

Quote:
Originally posted by ROTORRAY
I AM NO EXPERT. I know a LITTLE about a lot. An EXPERT knows a LOT about a LITTLE. Anyway, seeing that the directions indicate taking the battery base out I would assume that you remove the starter from above. I've never done an MDX starter but it's just a couple of nuts and cables so it can't be that hard. If you're going to the trouble of taking the thing off my choice would be to replace as much as you can while you have the thing out. I guess you could nickle-and-dime it and replace only what is worn but the worn parts are just as old as the rest of it and the other parts are probably getting ready to go, too, so why fool with it. Replace it all and you'll be done for a while, and it will be reliable again (or at least I hope it will). Let us know how it goes for you. I, too, have an '03 with the original starter but no symptoms of any problems. With my luck now that I wrote that last sentence the thing will probablly fail tonight.
LMAO... you are too funny... and "knock on wood"...
Can anyone post how much they paid for their starter and where it was bought to have a general idea of a price without labor so I can know what to expect and not get ripped off...
thanx in advance...
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Old 04-30-2008, 10:21 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: First off...

Quote:
Originally posted by ROTORRAY
I AM NO EXPERT. I know a LITTLE about a lot. An EXPERT knows a LOT about a LITTLE. Anyway, seeing that the directions indicate taking the battery base out I would assume that you remove the starter from above. I've never done an MDX starter but it's just a couple of nuts and cables so it can't be that hard. If you're going to the trouble of taking the thing off my choice would be to replace as much as you can while you have the thing out. I guess you could nickle-and-dime it and replace only what is worn but the worn parts are just as old as the rest of it and the other parts are probably getting ready to go, too, so why fool with it. Replace it all and you'll be done for a while, and it will be reliable again (or at least I hope it will). Let us know how it goes for you. I, too, have an '03 with the original starter but no symptoms of any problems. With my luck now that I wrote that last sentence the thing will probablly fail tonight.
I hear ya.....LOL....

I've had lots of success keeping things going without replacing parts in my life with good success. My 1963 Wheel Horse garden tractor is an example.

I feel like my stater is fine, so it's the end piece (bendix or whatever they are call it these days), as I get completely normal behavior when it's warm. So this almost sounds like a "lube" thing. My labor is therapy for me after spending hours in the office, so I'm not worried about my time right now. If the starter itself was causing problems, I lean more towards replacing the entire unit.

I priced a whole new unit @ 188, so in all likelihood I'll just replace the entire unit and be done with it. I don't put the miles on it I used to, as I drive the Hybrid all over the planet now, but I hate the way this sounds when the car is cold.

IMHO an 03 shouldn't have this problem, but this is a whole new issue....

Thanks again for your comments.
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Old 05-10-2008, 08:13 PM   #13 (permalink)
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i tried

well today i tried to replace the starter. I got all the way to the point of removing the 2 bolts that hold the starter in place. The top one was so tight i couldn't budge it and i started looking at the bottom bolt and couldn't figure out how i would get my hand or any type socket on it. I couldn't imagine a way... even if i got the top one off, how i would get the other off, much less get the new starter and bolts back in. I gave up and got everything back the way it was. Now i am debating if i should give it another shot tomorrow?

Any suggestions or tricks to get to that bolt?
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Old 11-12-2008, 07:38 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Re: First off...

Quote:
Originally posted by BlueStreak


I hear ya.....LOL....

I've had lots of success keeping things going without replacing parts in my life with good success. My 1963 Wheel Horse garden tractor is an example.

I feel like my stater is fine, so it's the end piece (bendix or whatever they are call it these days), as I get completely normal behavior when it's warm. So this almost sounds like a "lube" thing. My labor is therapy for me after spending hours in the office, so I'm not worried about my time right now. If the starter itself was causing problems, I lean more towards replacing the entire unit.

I priced a whole new unit @ 188, so in all likelihood I'll just replace the entire unit and be done with it. I don't put the miles on it I used to, as I drive the Hybrid all over the planet now, but I hate the way this sounds when the car is cold.

IMHO an 03 shouldn't have this problem, but this is a whole new issue....

Thanks again for your comments.
Same thing on mine, I got the 100K warantee and took it in to have the starter replaced but I failed to keep track of the 5 years and missed by a month...

They want $500 to replace, nothing really going wrong here except it stays engaged a bit too long when cold and makes the noise.

I am sticking with the old starter for now.
Anyone figure out a repair or maintenance to get the old starter working smoothly again?
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Old 03-05-2009, 02:05 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Hey,
New to the forums and just got an 03 MDX and I am having the same "sound" after it gets started on cold mornings. Is the only solution to this replacing the whole starter or does anyone know another way. I dont think that its going out because it fires right up. It seems as if its not disengaging after it starts and continues to spin..........?> Any help is greatly appreciated
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