1999 Toyota Camry having trouble starting


So my car (1999 Toyota Camry 4 cylinder) was having trouble starting. The electronics would work and but when I turned the key it would just click, it would only do this a few times sometimes and then start right up. It did it more fequently with rain and would get better if I had just used it. I was thinking, and was encouraged by a similar caller to your show, that it was corrosion around the battery terminals. And there was quite a bit of corrosion. It has been getting worse recently so I went to clean the terminals. Did so today and it wont start at all now. It just clicks, all the electronics come on still. Any suggestions as to what to look for, if I can get it started I might bring it in to a mechanic but I want to know what is going on first so I dont get ripped off.

You need a replacement starter. The Denso gear-reduction starter is very hardy, but it has the solenoid cast into the case. The contacts tend to get hammered out of shape after a decade of use, and causes intermittent start problems before failing altogether. It is possible to replace these contacts, but it is generally easier to replace the starter.

BKnuckles got it right. If you know how to remove the starter you can get a set of replacement contacts for the solenoid (make sure you get both side ones and the center round disc with the rod attached) and replace them. Or you could put in a replacement starter, or have your mechanic do it.

First I would try to slice the coating on the red battery cable about 3 inches.
Do it on the side not the top and look for green crude under the coating witch will let enough voltage for electronics through but not enough to turn starter.
If there is crude and the cable is long enough to cut out bad cable then put clamp back on. If not you need a new cable.
Connections at ground at frame or motor and red wire at starter can be dirty.
This is free, try it before buying starter.