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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm having a problem with my 2004 3.9L V6 Mustang. It will not start. I don't think it's the battery, because for a second after you turn the key, it'll try to start, but then it stops and there's a rapid clicking and if you hold the key long enough, the alarm will go off (despite it not even being armed). When you let off the key, all the electrics work fine (lights, headlights, A/C, etc) and at full power. For the weeks leading up to this, I was hearing a loud intermittent squeaking coming from the belt area. At first I thought it was the belt, but I now know it wasn't the belt itself because it looks almost brand new. I thought it was possibly the pulleys that needed to be lubricated, so I did that. In hindsight, now that I think about it, it could have been a bearing that was going. If I had to make a guess, I'd say it's either the starter or the alternator. However, I don't know a heck of a lot about cars, so I'm looking for some help. Any insight would be appreciated. Jason
 

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i'm gonna say starter is where i'd look first...take a broom handle or something like that and tap the starter with a hammer using it. see if it's just binding...if that's the case time to swap it out
 

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i'm gonna say starter is where i'd look first...take a broom handle or something like that and tap the starter with a hammer using it. see if it's just binding...if that's the case time to swap it out
sounds just like a starter problem. just need to free up a stuck solenoid. if not get back to us!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Like I said, I don't know a heck of a lot about cars. Normally, I'd just take my car to the garage, but since it won't start, I can't. Where would the starter be located at on this engine?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Ugh, wonderful. Can it be reached without a floor jack? I haven't bought one yet. I'd been putting it off till I got my social security disability payment for this month. Ironically enough, it was one of the things I was going out for when I discovered my car wouldn't start.
 

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Nope.. You have to jack your car up in order to get to it... Unless your a stick then maybe but itd be safer with a floor jack and floor stands,..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well I have the stands, just not the floor jack. I got an Autozone within about 1/2 mile of my apartment. Maybe I can walk to it and buy it there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Ok, I have some more observations. Hopefully this will narrow it down. Part of me says the battery is bad. When I turn the key to the on position, all the doors will lock. The check engine light and the battery light remain on (not sure if they are supposed to or not). With everything off and the ignition in the on position, the Voltage Meter isn't in the red, but it's pretty low. It's normally halfway between L and H, but it's not even halfway to it's normal level of the midpoint between L and H. When you turn the A/C on full blast, the voltage drops into the red zone. When you turn it off, the voltage returns to where it was with no accessories on. I don't know if that means the battery is bad, or the alternator isn't charging it. I don't want to put a new battery on just to have it drained again. Oh, and that rapid clicking that follows the short attempted turnover of the engine will not stop until you release the key from the "Start" position.
 

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I'm still leaning towards the starter

I would grab a friend have them try and start it while you tap on it with a hammer and get back to us.
The battery will get drained quickly if you are constantly trying to start it with out it turning over...
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Well, I'm going to attempt a jump with one of my neighbors later this afternoon. If it's the starter, it shouldn't start at all. But if it's the battery, it'll start. The clicking sounds don't sound like they are coming from the area where the starter is located. It sounds more in the area of the alternator. It's just me right now, so I couldn't get a really good listen. And I wasn't starting it a bunch of times. I tried it a few times on Saturday night, then let it be and made my OP. Let it sit all day/night Sunday and just tried it a few times before. One other thing to note. I live in FL and it was pretty cold this past weekend (for FL, anyways). It was below freezing both these past overnight hours. It may have been the last straw for the battery if it was already weak.
 

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The clicking noise you hear is coming from your solenoid. It clicks when it is not getting enough power to fully engage. I would start by having a buddy jump start your car. Take it to a local auto parts store. (With your buddy following, you may need a jump again) most APS will test your batterie and alternator for free. If they turn out to be ok then more than likely its your starter. Judging by you comets about the squeaky belt. My best guess is your alternator is bad, it's not charging your battery enough to start. Also if you have a dead battery and it gets below freezing you can freeze your battery. Look to se if one of the sides of it is bulging out or out of square. You may have to replace both. Good luck and keep us posted.
 

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Luckily thats easy..i changed out both my alternator and battery at advance in the parking lot last may.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
The clicking noise you hear is coming from your solenoid. It clicks when it is not getting enough power to fully engage. I would start by having a buddy jump start your car. Take it to a local auto parts store. (With your buddy following, you may need a jump again) most APS will test your batterie and alternator for free. If they turn out to be ok then more than likely its your starter. Judging by you comets about the squeaky belt. My best guess is your alternator is bad, it's not charging your battery enough to start. Also if you have a dead battery and it gets below freezing you can freeze your battery. Look to se if one of the sides of it is bulging out or out of square. You may have to replace both. Good luck and keep us posted.
I'll take a look, but I have an Optima battery. It's case isn't rectangular, so it may be a bit hard to see a bulge.
 

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you won't have that issue then in an optima..those coiled cells wont bulge like a standard flood cell battery
 

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Last summer in my grandpas f150 with a 302 in it the battery would constantly die and we would have to jump it in order for it to start and so me and my uncle were going somewhere and of course he shuts it off and we didnt have another person to back it up so my dad came with his f250 and was going to jump it well he hooked it up and i tried to turn it over and it wouldnt turn over so my dad got under the truck with a hammer and was pounding on the starter and it turned over... It was the starter that was bad...
 

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Luckily thats easy..i changed out both my alternator and battery at advance in the parking lot last may.
Yeah alternator was cake. Longest part of the install was waiting in line at the auto parts store ha. I probably didnt even need to do the battery but oh well she fires right up now.
 
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