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Pelican Technical Article:

Starter Replacement

Jared Fenton

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$200

Talent:

****

Tools:

Flathead screwdriver, 10mm/13mm/18mm sockets, torque wrench, floor jack, jack stands, wheel chocks, safety glasses

Applicable Models:

Jetta MkIV 2.0L (1998-05)

Parts Required:

Starter

Hot Tip:

Always disconnect the battery before removing starter

Performance Gain:

Not getting stuck in the middle of nowhere

Complementary Modification:

Replace battery

The starter motor will wear out over time. It's just a fact of life. Typically, a failing starter will take longer and longer to crank, despite having a full battery. It can also develop a grinding noise, indicating that the bearings in the starter are failing. A failing starter can also trigger a diagnostic trouble code. If possible, use the factory VAG-COM computer or an aftermarket scanner to check that there is not a problem with the electronic immobilizer system.

The most important thing to do before anything else is to remove the negative lead from the battery. This disconnects the entire electrical system on the vehicle and prevents damage to both the vehicle AND yourself.

Replacing the starter itself from the engine is relatively straightforward, but it helps to remove the battery box for better access. See our article on Battery Box Removal for more information.

Once you can access the starter, remove the electrical connections, brackets and the two bolts holding the starter to the transmission. The new starter is installed in the reverse order. Place the starter up against the mounting flange and thread the bolts through the starter and into the flange. Once both bolts are in, torque them to 65Nm (47 ft/lbs.).

It is important that you disconnect the negative terminal on the battery before replacing the starter.
Figure 1

It is important that you disconnect the negative terminal on the battery before replacing the starter. The positive lead off the battery runs directly to the starter. Failure to remove the negative lead from the battery will result in damage to the car and possibly yourself. Loosen the 10mm nut (green arrow) on the negative terminal and pull it off the battery. See our article on battery Replacement for more information.

Press the tab on the electrical connector (green arrow) and pull it apart.
Figure 2

Press the tab on the electrical connector (green arrow) and pull it apart. Now pull the black plastic cover off the positive terminal (yellow arrow).

Loosen and remove the 13mm nut (green arrow) holding the cable housing to the top starter mounting stud.
Figure 3

Loosen and remove the 13mm nut (green arrow) holding the cable housing to the top starter mounting stud. You can't see the nut with the cable housing in place. Feel for it. You should be able to pull the housing off with the cables in place, but I had some difficulty doing so. You can get by with gently pulling up the end of the housing (yellow arrow) and pulling the wires (blue arrow).

Now loosen and remove the 13mm nut (green arrow) holding the positive terminal to the starter.
Figure 4

Now loosen and remove the 13mm nut (green arrow) holding the positive terminal to the starter. Press the clips (yellow arrow) on the electrical connector to the solenoid and pull it off.

Loosen and remove the top 18mm bolt (green arrow) holding the starter to the transmission.
Figure 5

Loosen and remove the top 18mm bolt (green arrow) holding the starter to the transmission. You'll need a deep 18mm socket to clear the mounting stud. Keep in mind that the bolt is rather long. You'll have to slide it out. Also note the cable housing (yellow arrow) off to the side.

From below the car, loosen and remove the 13mm nut (green arrow) holding the bracket to the mounting stud.
Figure 6

From below the car, loosen and remove the 13mm nut (green arrow) holding the bracket to the mounting stud.

Pull the end of the bracket (yellow arrow) off the mounting stud and use the deep 18mm socket to remove the lower mounting bolt (green arrow).
Figure 7

Pull the end of the bracket (yellow arrow) off the mounting stud and use the deep 18mm socket to remove the lower mounting bolt (green arrow). Now carefully remove the starter from inside the engine bay.

And here's the finished result.
Figure 8

And here's the finished result. Installing the new starter is the reverse of removal.

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Page last updated: Wed 12/7/2016 03:07:52 AM