This van came in with a complaint of the starter only clicks when trying to crank ,sometimes. In checking out the problem I noticed that when it did crank it cranked normally. I went to the starter and checked signals. The battery cable to the starter had 12 volts at all times, normal. The “S” terminal had 12 volts as I had someone try to crank the engine, normal. However the terminal connected to the starter motor lead was dead. Diagnosis of a faulty starter solenoid.
Whenever you have to do live testing (battery connected) be sure to be clear of all moving and potentially moving objects. Set the parking brake after making sure it works and chock the wheel if at all possible. Remember also the person helping you has to be some one you trust with your life and limbs. They are at risk!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Starter removal requires that the battery be disconnected, the two starter wires have to be removed and the two mounting bolts have to be removed.
I started removing the starter and as soon as I got to the battery cable to solenoid connection I realized the nut was a little loose. I continued to removed the starter and I found that the cable had been loose for a while. You can see the arc mark on the terminal bolt below. Look at the left hand terminal bolt. The arc mark is at twelve o’clock.
You can see the arc marks on the cable terminal and the nut as well.
The customer did elect to replace the starter as well due to the mileage of the vehicle.