No power with key on after new starter - Chevelle Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical problems.

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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 12th, 18, 12:23 AM Thread Starter
 
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No power with key on after new starter

Hey everyone as the title says I just replaced my starter. The first time I tried to crank it I got some sparks at the positive battery terminal. Turns out the connection was loose at the starter. I tightened it up and nothing. I have power to the "bat" spare slots in the fuse block, but turn the key and no power to anything. Positive goes to the starter post with a wire off that going to the alternator and through the firewall left of the brake booster. I have verified power as far as it goes under the hood. Haven't gotten into taking things apart under the dash yet. Any ideas what I should be looking for?

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 12th, 18, 12:27 AM
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Re: No power with key on after new starter

What year? Turn on your headlights...are they working?
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 12th, 18, 12:51 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: No power with key on after new starter

It's an 82 s10 with a 350 swap. I bought it that way, so I'm not sure about the wiring. The headlights do not work.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 12th, 18, 1:07 AM
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Re: No power with key on after new starter

That's going to leave me guessing a bit, I would look for a missed wire near the starter. That wire may feed headlights and starter circuit. Usually, there is a fusible link in that wire. If you find one, check power after the link. Check for power at your horn relay. There may be another fusible link there. Trace the larger wire from the horn relay back to the battery or starter and check for power. You didn't miss any wires to the battery post?

Gonna see if I can find a wiring diagram for that truck.

Check your pwr/acc 30 amp fuse in fuse box. While you are there check them all real quick with a test light.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 12th, 18, 2:28 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: No power with key on after new starter

Here's a visual breakdown of what's going on. I tried to insert the pictures in the text, but haven't done that before. There is one wire from the positive side of the battery to the starter and a wire coming off that same starter post. It splits into 4 with these connections
One goes to this connection on the firewall and back out to the alternator post.
Another goes to the positive side of the alternator harness.
The last 2 go in behind the fuse block in this look.
I verified power to all these points and at the pwr/account, horn, bat, lighting. When I turn the key to run nothing to the fuses.
I had not yet checked the under hood wires key on, so I did and didn't get power. I then started at the battery, got power, starter post and down the line I had power everywhere. Turned the key and single click. I'm pretty confused about what it could be.

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 12th, 18, 2:50 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: No power with key on after new starter

I wish I knew more about wiring. I'd pull all that old crap out and start fresh. My experience is with newer stock cars where you replace what's there with the same thing and have a ton of resources available. That's half the appeal of messing with these older cars. I just don't want to dig myself deeper right now.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 12th, 18, 3:20 PM
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Re: No power with key on after new starter

See those rubber cylindrical "wire connectors"? They are fusible links. Check to see if you have power to both sides of the rubber cylinder. If not, we have to find out why they burned out. Likely there is a direct short to ground somewhere. One of those likely feeds power to the headlight switch and ignition system. You've already confirmed all your fuses to be good in the fuse box...right?

If no power, you'll have to replace it with a similarly sized fusible link or a maxi fuse. Don't even think about bypassing them, it may be the only thing that keeps that truck from burning to the ground.

Is there power to that bulkhead connector on the firewall? Looks like there's a terminal without a wire on it.

Your electrical system is cringe worthy and needs a serious sorting out. I would consider a rewiring or new wire harness. I'd keep a fire extinguisher on hand, safety glasses, and a means to quickly disconnect the negative terminal on the battery just in case the magic smoke tries to get out. Maybe leave the neg terminal loose enough so you can get a pry bar under it in case things go bad. Maybe work on it outside so you don't burn your garage down. Make sure none of your wires are touching a fuel line.

One of you distributor cap hold down screws is loose.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 12th, 18, 3:33 PM
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Re: No power with key on after new starter

So far this is the best I can access for wiring diagrams. https://www.autozone.com/repairinfo/...96b43f8038ed97
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Last edited by DUTCH MAX HEADWORK; Aug 12th, 18 at 3:55 PM.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old Aug 12th, 18, 5:19 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: No power with key on after new starter

The bulkhead connector has 2 wires taped together and crimped into the same terminal. One is from the fusible link in the picture. The other goes to the alternator post. I was actually wondering if I could just run that wire directly to the alternator instead of how it is s. Looks like it shouldn't matter. To be honest I'm not sure what the purpose of the bulkhead connector is.

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