Imagine that you have been driving for a couple of hours with your classic car, and need to stop because you need to go to the toilet or get a hot-dog or something.
When you come back, you happily take a seat in the car ant turn the ignition key, and…nothing, you only hear a annoying click from the starter, what happened?
I’m sure this has happened to many of you, at least those of you that run exhaust headers on your engines.
What happens is that due to excessive heat over a period of time, your on-starter solenoid get’s to hot and the resistance increases and the starter does not get enough power to operate.
And the only cure for this when it happens, is to sit down calmly and wait for the engine and starter to cool down.
It might take as much as 15 to 30 minutes before you can get the car started again.
The problem here is that the starter has a starter solenoid or starter relay if you wish, mounted on or integrated in the starter. This is what will stop working if it gets to hot.
There is however a simple solution to this problem. It can be resolved by installing a remote starter solenoid. Mounting a starter solenoid at a remote location in the engine bay, away from the most extensive heat, will make the solenoid able to deliver current to your starter regardless of how hot the engine or starter is.
It is a simple process really, you only need to purchase a starter solenoid , and some wires, and then you should be set.
I use a starter solenoid from Standard Motor Products part number SS581, this is a Ford style solenoid and does not cost a lot. It has been reliable for me thus far.
You can find this starter solenoid on http://www.summitracing.com, summit part number SMP-SS581.
Here is a simple explanation and a schematic of how you could wire the solenoid to your ignition and starter motor:
Find a place to mount it, someplace on the inner fender not to far from the battery is a good place to put it. The solenoid grounds trough its mounting bracket, so make sure you have good ground wherever you put it.
Then you need to disconnect the negative battery cable from the battery.
Then move the wires that are connected to the BAT connection on your starter. This is usually a terminal that is a bit larger than the others. Attach these wires to the A side of the solenoid (see drawing below). Now you need only one wire from the solenoid to the starter. Eliminating wiring mess and the risk of melting alt those wires against the headers.
Now, again referencing the image below, you need to run a heavy gauge wire from point B on the solenoid to the BATT terminal on the starter. You can use a battery cable for this, just make sure it is big enough to take the current.
Run a jumper wire from the S terminal on the starter to the BAT terminal on the starters built in solenoid. This ensures that the built in solenoid on the starter gets full battery power. At the left is a picture of how it can look Note! This will not look exactly like this on every car, but hopefully you get the point.
Disclaimer: We are not responsible for any injury on yourself or your equipment as a result of you not doing what you need to secure yourself and your vehicle by following safety guidelines. It is very important that you disconnect the battery and ground everything properly for this to work properly.