Ask the Editors: Identify This Scratching Sound
My solenoid thinks it’s a rap DJ.
I tried connecting cables from the battery to the starter and that started to turn the engine over so I’m guessing it’s the solenoid, is there anything I could check? Thanks. Nicholas.jw
Sounds from a solenoid aren’t all that uncommon- the most likely of these coming in the form of a buzzing or chattering and of course, a click when the ignition is activated.
Scratching is a bit more difficult to identify. Undervoltage (too little) can cause the solenoid to fail to open completely, which often manifests in the form of a hum thanks to vibration.
Fortunately, as you seem to have realized, there are ways of checking out the status of your solenoid without requiring a stethoscope.
Grab a voltmeter and connect the red lead to the solenoid wire coil (you should see where the positive lead of the battery connects to the solenoid) while keeping the black lead on the negative terminal of your quad’s battery. Once you’ve completed this circuit, you should get a reading of 12 volts. If you get no reading or a number wildly different, it is indeed time to pick up a new solenoid.
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