Register now to get rid of these ads!

Can a faulty ignition switch cause a starter to stick?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Dimadee, Mar 12, 2013.

  1. Dimadee
    Joined: Feb 19, 2013
    Posts: 97


    I am having a problem with my 1960 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham, and hope to get some insight from my fellow HAMBers

    I have only recently purchased this vehicle, and it is in with the mechanic being made ready for a roadworthy. The front suspension rubbers and ball joints have all been replaced (ball joints were the originals!), as well as the rear control arm bushes, which were barely there.

    Anyway, on a number of occasions I have started the engine and the starter has not disengaged after starting. I can switch the ignition off and take the key out, however the starter continues to crank over. This is not good! The only way to stop it is to disconnect the battery.

    One of these occurrences totally fried the starter motor so I sourced a reconditioned unit and had it fitted. Speaking to the mechanic today, the starter is still not disengaging sometimes.

    My question is how likely is it for the ignition switch to be causing this? I can get another ignition switch, but just wanted to check if this is a realistic potential solution.
  2. Yes that's a possibility.
    I would disconnect the starter activation wire and use a test light to check it out.
    The ignition switch should kill power to everything In the off position including that wire.
    Faulty ignition switches cause lots of trouble
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2013
  3. R Pope
    Joined: Jan 23, 2006
    Posts: 3,218

    R Pope

    Could be the switch, all right. Try hooking up a separate switch, like the ones used to bump the starter when tuning. If it doesn't stick with this switch, you know what's wrong. A Caddy switch might be hard to find, so you could always put a push-button switch under the dash for starting it.
  4. porknbeaner
    Joined: Sep 12, 2003
    Posts: 38,751


    Not disagreeing with 31Vicky here but another option and one that is common is a bad starter solenoid. Sometimes they stick.

    Did the different starter motor come with a different solenoid or did you use the same one?
    Register now to get rid of these ads!

  5. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 7,865

    Rusty O'Toole

    The test light suggestion is a good one. Add it to the key switch circuit and tape it to the dash. When the starter sticks, if the light is on, it's the switch. If the light goes off, it's the solenoid.

    I would add a wire to the switch terminal of the solenoid, to a bulb, then to ground.
  6. CGkidd
    Joined: Mar 2, 2002
    Posts: 2,715


    All of the above. Did you change the solenoid when you changed the motor? If so then I would say it is most likely the switch.
  7. PKap
    Joined: Jan 5, 2011
    Posts: 594

    from Alberta

    If it is not the switch( first choice to check) I would see if the starter is too tight. If the p.o. changed it without replacing shims, and the flywheel has some rough teeth, it can grab the starter gear and not let it go.

    Posted from the TJJ App for iPhone & iPad
  8. I would check the solenoid. HRP
  9. lanny haas
    Joined: Nov 1, 2008
    Posts: 561

    lanny haas
    from Phoenix AZ

    I go for the switch if it keeps trunning over AFTER the key is turned is still getting power to the starter from the switch even after it is off. I think a contact is loose in the switch. those can be taken apart if you know what your doing.
  10. Funny thing here is the battery needs disconnected to stop it.
    Still the only place you have to start with is a test light on the starter activation wire.
    That may /should lead you up the path to the problem.

    Or you could throw $ and parts at it
  11. big M
    Joined: Mar 22, 2010
    Posts: 709

    big M

    Often times it is the solenoid, the copper contact disc inside gets worn and willl stick in the bore of the solenoid. a light tap on the side of the solenoid with a hammer will often free it up temporarily. The ignition switch can also cause the same problem, if the crimp between the bakelite and potmetal portion comes loose, allowing the springs or contacts to come loose and create a new circuit.

  12. black 62
    Joined: Jul 12, 2012
    Posts: 1,896

    black 62
    from arkansas

    disconnect the red wire to the switch ---worked for me...
  13. Nads
    Joined: Mar 5, 2001
    Posts: 11,501

    from Hypocrisy

    Oh man, I have wanted one of these cars for a very long time, would you be interested in selling it?
  14. Chrisbcritter
    Joined: Sep 11, 2011
    Posts: 1,491


    My ex-boss's '56 DeSoto has this problem - and the guy who used to detail it told me it only happened when the battery was low; if it was fully charged it wouldn't do it. Does that narrow it down?

    So where did you find this Brougham?
  15. Dimadee
    Joined: Feb 19, 2013
    Posts: 97


    Thanks all for your replies. I really appreciate you taking the time to respond. The light globe sounds like an excellent idea as it will tell me if the switch is the source. I wouldn't have thought of that straight away, so thanks for eliminating some frustration!

    I bought the reconditioned starter from UCP Auto Parts on eBay. It was the only place I could find a reconditioned unit quickly. It came fully assembled with a solenoid attached. The fact that the first starter did the same thing makes me think that the switch may be the culprit.

    You may not have noticed that I am in Melbourne, Australia. I bought the Brougham from a guy up in Queensland and shipped it down to Melbourne. It is build number 70, and from what I can find out, it is the only 1960 Brougham in Australia. There are a number of things that are not right with it (i.e. the tri power has been swapped for a 4 barrel), but it is still a Brougham!

    I have only had it for a short time, but everything has a price. Nads, if you are serious, please PM me.
  16. Nads
    Joined: Mar 5, 2001
    Posts: 11,501

    from Hypocrisy

    There are two more 1960 Eldo Broughams in Australia both in very, very rough condition.

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!


Copyright © 1995-2013 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.