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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

My wife drives a 2009 Accord sedan EX-L i4. It has 200k miles on it. We had the battery replaced (by Honda) about 4 months ago and the alternator rebuilt 2 months ago when it died. Since then, the vehicle has been difficult to start (but always started). After a few medium-slow cranks, it finally does come up.

This past weekend when it was pretty warm outside (80+), we drove the vehicle at highway speeds for about 30 minutes. I turned off the car, waited 15 seconds, and tried to start it again, but it wouldn't turn over at all. I may have heard one click, but I didn't know what to listen for at the time. I assumed the battery was dead and I would need a jump later. Later, after the car sat for a couple of hours, it started up just fine without jumping (after the normal slow crank). After driving the same distance home, I tried turning it off for a minute and then turning it back on, but it yet again failed to start. I tried turning it on multiple times with no luck, then I jumped it with a battery-pack jumper and it started just fine. This made me think it was the battery.

My wife took it to Honda and they tested the battery, said it looked great and definitely wasn't the problem. They think it's the starter (it's original). I tried the "turn off and turn on" several times after driving long distances, but I cannot get it to happen again.

The alternator is putting out about 13.8 (maybe 14?) volts when the car is running, and the battery is reading between 12.5-12.6 when the car is off. I tried pulling the fuel pump relay and then starting (to check voltage under load), but the voltage never dropped below 11.5. My reading online said that as low as 9.5 was acceptable.

I don't want to just throw parts at the problem, and the starter is not exactly easy to replace, but does this sound like a starter problem to you guys, or something else? Worst case I would remove the starter and take it to an auto parts store to test it, but I don't want to go to all of the work to take it off and re-install it if there is a simpler diagnostic that I should do first.

Thank you for your help!
 

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If it cranks then it's clearly not the starter...
 

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Sounds like alternator might not be charging the battery while driving. I've never trusted alternator rebuilds, in my personal experience.
 

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It is the starter you can do the following.

1. Rebuild your starter, there is a good write up on this site on how to do it.
2. Have your starter rebuilt by an auto electric shop.
3. Get a used starter and have it rebuilt either by yourself or an auto electric shop.


Buy a Denso starter part# 280-6010.

Do not go to a big parts store and buy some rebuilt starter with a "lifetime" warranty.

Definitely double check the battery connections on the battery are clean and tight

There is a great tool to test the battery, alternator, and voltage drop on start. I use this one but there are others. It will verify the battery, alternator, and give you the voltage drop on start.






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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks all for the input. I double-checked the voltage while the vehicle was running this evening, and it's actually hovering around 14-14.1. Since this problem has continued for a couple of weeks (and seems to be worse the the engine is warm, and better once it cools down), I do not think that it is likely to be the alternator.

I am going to try to take the battery to a parts store tomorrow to have them load test it to make sure that Honda didn't miss something (or want to sell me on some other service). If that checks out, I'll probably plan to replace the starter and get it tested once it's off.

Thanks for the recommendations Greg, I've heard mixed reviews about remanufactured starters so I am a bit hesitant to go that route. I know that Denso is an OEM supplier for at least some parts, do you mind giving a bit more details why you recommend that particular starter?

A new starter from Honda appears to be in the $350-$450 range depending on which alternator fits my vehicle, but I was considering a new one from Autozone with their lifetime warranty for $250. I wondering if any of you had experience with their starters...? https://www.autozone.com/batteries-...r/duralast-gold-new-starter-17960n/389836_0_0

Thanks again.
 

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Thanks all for the input. I double-checked the voltage while the vehicle was running this evening, and it's actually hovering around 14-14.1. Since this problem has continued for a couple of weeks (and seems to be worse the the engine is warm, and better once it cools down), I do not think that it is likely to be the alternator.

I am going to try to take the battery to a parts store tomorrow to have them load test it to make sure that Honda didn't miss something (or want to sell me on some other service). If that checks out, I'll probably plan to replace the starter and get it tested once it's off.

Thanks for the recommendations Greg, I've heard mixed reviews about remanufactured starters so I am a bit hesitant to go that route. I know that Denso is an OEM supplier for at least some parts, do you mind giving a bit more details why you recommend that particular starter?

A new starter from Honda appears to be in the $350-$450 range depending on which alternator fits my vehicle, but I was considering a new one from Autozone with their lifetime warranty for $250. I wondering if any of you had experience with their starters...? https://www.autozone.com/batteries-...r/duralast-gold-new-starter-17960n/389836_0_0

Thanks again.
Remanufactured Denso parts are fine, assuming they're remanufactured by Denso and not some other company.

Do not go with parts store parts for this. This and the alternator are two things I always say go for a Denso, whether it's new or remanufactured. From what I've seen, they're the only ones you can trust to be reliable. Sure, you may think you can just use the lifetime warranty if you have any issues, but you can either keep using your lifetime warranty over and over or put in a Denso unit and be done with it. Different vehicle but still a good example, through experience, at Odyclub we've found out that Denso alternators are the only ones that seem to work on the Odysseys. All other ones have some kind of issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks again for the info. Based on the consensus given here, I went ahead and ordered a Denso reman from RockAuto along with Fel-Pro plenum seals. My wife won't need the car next week so I plan to work on it then, I will post an update with how it goes and what the final diagnosis is.
 
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