How to Change the Starter on Chrysler Carsby Contributing Writer
The starter motor is a central part of the engine's electrical system. If your Chrysler car is slow to start or does not turn over at all, the starter may be to blame. You can remove the starter and have it tested at most auto parts stores to determine if it is failing, before replacement. Replacing the starter requires only a few steps, making it a realizable project for the home mechanic.
Under The Hood:
- How to Change the Starter on 2006 300c
- How to Replace a Starter for a Chrysler LeBaron
- How to Replace the Starter on a 2001 Chrysler Sebring
- How to Replace a Starter on a Front Wheel Drive Neon Car
- How to Replace the Starter in a Chrysler 300M
Open the trunk. Lift up on the floor panel inside the trunk – also known as the spare tire cover – and pull the panel out of the trunk to expose the battery. Loosen the nut on the negative battery cable end’s pinch bolt, using a combination wrench. Pull the negative battery cable end from the battery and set it aside to prevent accidental reconnection.
Raise the front of the vehicle with a floor jack and slide jack stands under the frame rails. Lower the vehicle onto the jack stands.
Crawl under the vehicle on the passenger’s side of the engine until you reach where the engine and transmission connect. Find the starter attached to the transmission bell housing where the engine and transmission meet.
Remove the nut securing the battery wire to its stud on the rear of the starter, using a ratchet and socket. Pull the battery wire from the starter. Unplug the solenoid wire’s harness from the receptacle on the rear of the starter by just pulling it away from the receptacle.
Remove the three starter bolts – these bolts go through the rear of the transmission bell housing, then into the starter. Pull the starter toward the front of the 300C until the end of the starter is clear of the bell housing. Remove the starter from the vehicle.
Guide the nose of the starter – the end with the gear – into the hole in the transmission bell housing, then hand-thread the three starter bolts. You may have to wiggle the starter to get the gear to engage the teeth on the flex plate.
Plug the solenoid wire’s harness into its receptacle on the rear of the starter. Connect the battery wire to its stud on the starter and hand-thread the retaining nut. Tighten the retaining nut to 9 foot-pounds, using a torque wrench and socket. Tighten the two starter bolts to 40 foot-pounds.
Raise the 300C off the jack stands with a floor jack and remove the jack stands. Lower the 300C to the ground.
Press the negative battery cable end onto the negative terminal on the battery and tighten the pinch bolt’s nut until it’s snug, using a ratchet and socket. Reinstall the floor panel into the trunk and lower it over the spare tire and battery.
Items you will need
Combination wrench set
Disconnect the negative battery cable from the battery terminal using a wrench. Position the cable so that it cannot come into contact with the battery terminal while you are working.
Lift the front of the LeBaron with a jack and secure it on a set of jack stands. Be sure that the jack stands are level, so that the vehicle does not shift while you are working.
Remove the mounting bolt running from the front of the starter motor, using a wrench or socket and ratchet. Support the motor carefully, so that it does not fall. Remove the mounting bolt running from the rear of the starter motor with a wrench or socket and ratchet, then remove the nut from the rear of the starter with a wrench.
Remove the nuts securing the electrical wires to the starter motor--there are two nuts that need to be removed with a wrench. Disconnect the wiring harness from the starter and pull the starter motor free of the vehicle.
Position the new starter in the same orientation as the one you removed. Connect the two electrical wires to the corresponding locations, in the same manner they were routed on the original starter. Torque the nuts to the manufacturer's recommendation. Reconnect the wiring harness connector to the starter.
Secure the starter motor with the three mounting bolts. The upper mounting bolt should be fed through the rear of the starter. The lower mounting bolt should be fed through the front of the starter. Replace the nut on the rear of the starter. Tighten each of the bolts to 40 foot-pounds with your torque wrench.
Use the jack to raise the vehicle enough to remove the jack stands. Lower the vehicle to the ground. Reconnect the negative battery cable and start the vehicle to test the new starter.
Items you will need
Socket set and ratchet
Disconnect the negative (black) cable from the battery, then the red.
Remove the air cleaner assembly. It is the large plastic assembly on the right side of the engine connected to a large hose. It is held in place by several bolts. Remove the hose by squeezing the tabs on the hose clamp with a pair of pliers and sliding the hose off.
Disconnect the electrical connectors from the starter. The starter can be identified by the very large electrical lines that supply the power and must be unscrewed to remove.
Unbolt the starter from the engine block and pull it out of the compartment.
Replace the starter, torquing the bolts to 21 to 25 ft-lbs. Replace the electrical connectors and torque them to 36 to 52 in-lbs. (3 to 4.25 ft-lbs.). Install the air cleaner assembly and reconnect the battery.
Items you will need
Socket set, metric
Removing the Battery Box
Raise the front of your Neon with the floor jack, and support the car on jack stands.
Disconnect the ground cable from the negative battery terminal by loosening the retaining bolt with a wrench and pulling the clamp off the terminal.
Disconnect the positive cable from the battery.
Pull out the bolt that secures the battery hold-down clamp to the battery tray, using a socket. Remove the hold-down clamp.
Remove the battery from the vehicle by lifting it straight up.
Use a socket to pull out the eight bolts that secure the battery box to the vehicle. Remove the battery box.
Removing the Fan Assembly
Use a Phillips screwdriver to loosen the two hose clamps that secure the upper radiator hose to the engine and radiator.
Remove the upper radiator hose by pulling it off the engine and transmission.
Use a socket to pull out the four bolts along the top of the radiator that secure the fan assembly to the radiator.
Detach the electrical connectors from the fans. Use a flat-head screwdriver to pry the retaining clips away from the connectors; then pull the electrical connectors off the fans.
Lift the fan assembly from the vehicle.
Removing the Starter
Remove the two wires that are connected to the starter. The first wire has an plastic connector that you can simply pull off. The other wire is retained by a nut; use a socket to remove it.
Pull out the two bolts that connect the starter to the engine, using a ratchet.
Remove the starter from the Neon.
Installing a New Starter
Lift the new starter into position.
Reinstall the two bolts that connect the starter to the engine block.
Reconnect the two wires to the starter solenoid.
Reinstalling the Fan Assembly
Drop the fan assembly into position against the radiator.
Reconnect the electrical connectors to the fans by sliding them onto the fittings.
Reinstall the four bolts along the top of the radiator that secure the fan assembly.
Reinstall the upper radiator hose by sliding the hose ends onto the fittings on the engine and radiator. Then use a Phillips screwdriver to tighten the hose clamps.
Reinstalling the Battery
Drop the battery tray into position, and reinstall the eight bolts that secure it. Drop the battery into position in the tray.
Reinstall the battery hold-down clamp.
Reconnect the positive battery cable to the battery by sliding the clamp over the positive terminal and tightening the retaining bolt with a wrench. Reconnect the ground cable.
Lower the car.
Items you will need
Lock the steering wheel with the wheels facing forward using the steering wheel holder. Disconnect the negative battery terminal from the battery using a wrench to loosen the nut.
Jack the car up using the automobile jack and place the jack stand under the frame close to the jacking point. Raise the jack stand up to the frame of the car.
Remove the underbody splash shield using a wrench to remove the bolts.
Remove the intermediate steering shaft bolt using a socket and ratchet. Separate the upper and lower shafts after you remove the bolt.
Unplug the wiring harness from the starter and then remove the main electric cable using a wrench to remove the nut.
Remove the three starter mounting bolts using a socket and ratchet. Make sure you support the starter when you remove the last bolt so that it doesn't simply drop down. You will have to maneuver the starter around the exhaust and past the steering shaft to remove it.
Put the new starter in place and tighten the bolts using the socket and ratchet. Plug the wiring harness back in and reconnect the main wire, tightening the nut with a wrench.
Pull the upper and lower steering shafts back together and install the bolt. Tighten the bolt with a socket and ratchet.
Reinstall the underbody splash guard and tighten the bolts with a wrench. Remove the jack stand and lower the car back to the ground.
Reconnect the negative battery terminal and tighten it up with a wrench. Start the car and test the installation of the new starter.
Items you will need
Steering wheel holder
Metric socket set
Metric wrench set