Starter motor won't disengage after (+) battery and starter relay replacement | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations
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Starter motor won't disengage after (+) battery and starter relay replacement


New Member
January 25, 2014
Reaction score
City, State
Flagstaff, AZ
Year, Model & Trim Level
1994 Ford Explorer Sport
My 94 explorer did not start one morning. I diagnosed the problem as a bad (+) battery cable. I replaced the cable and in the midst of reattaching wires to starter relay I snapped a bolt from the relay. Went to Oreilly, got a new starter relay (the rep showed me two options, one was taller and would have stuck out further into my engine compartment, the other was about the same size as original but slightly different. I went with the latter.) and attached it. I reattached the wires the same way they were on the original relay, nothing worked, not even lights. I switched around the cable going from the starter motor and the cable from the battery. The lights worked, I turned over the motor. Once I turned over the motor a horrific grinding/static/BAD! sound was coming from around the area that the starter motor is. I've confirmed that the noise is in fact coming from the starter motor and am assuming that it is not disengaging once the motor is running. I've checked all connections and they are clean.

Could the starter relay be causing my starter motor to not disengage?

Could someone help me out?

The Bendix on the starter might be sticking so the gear doesn't retract.

Time to pull the starter for a look and test.

Been down that road. Almost identical story as yours. Short story is I bit the bullet and got a Motor Craft starter and solenoid complete. Problem solved! The solenoid and starter are a "matched" pair and need to work together. Certain parts on the these trucks should be replaced with Motor Craft like plugs, IAC, TPS and MAF just to name a few. Other things like PCV, hoses, plug wires etc.. you can use aftermarket.

Im having a similar issue. I can turn my 93 to on position and jump it at solenoid and it starts and runs like new. Try to start it with the key (cycling it to start position) the starter will hang. Has new key switch, ignition switch, starter, and solenoid. The rod doesn't seem to be bent and it seems inserted fully and properly. I just can't figure mine out.