76 Eldorado Starter problem

i own a 76 Eldorado for the last 3 years ,the last 12 months i have to replace 6 starter !! the garage is AAA approved -very nice people there -i get warranty on the starters and get him replaced -the flywheel is good -the was thinking this is the problem-is not-when i get the new starter (receycled mostly) the car started good -but i feel how its going downhill …starter gets slower and slower sometimes like the battery is not good–but i get also 3 new batteries in the last 12 months -can somebody help ? PS : now i think have always some replacement starter in my trunk -the garage have no clue anymore about the starter problem

Could be your alternator (it charges the battery). I doubt the starters were bad.

Instead of throwing more parts at it, Get your battery and alternator tested at a shop and let us know what they say.

Are you driving the car for a long enough period to completely charge the battery?

Do you have to do a lot of cranking before the engine finally catches? Are you cranking more than 5 seconds at an attempt? Are you giving the starter a five minute or better rest between cranks? How does the engine run once it does get running? How many miles on the Cad?

I would recommend that the people at the AAA approved garage do a postmortum on the next dead starter. Either they are getting burnt up or the bearings are wearing excessively fast. Both conditions point towards areas of diagnosis.

Get back to us with more information.

Someone does not know what they’re doing if the starter has been replaced that many times along with 3 times on the batt.
I’ll assume from your comment about the flywheel being good the problem is that the starter makes a grinding or gnashing sound when first engaged. This leads to the starter teeth being ruined?

If so, this is caused by the fact that whoever is installing the starter is not using the proper shim between the starter and engine block. These shims are available for about 3 bucks a package and come in various thicknesses. They’re easy to install; the thinnest shim is added and if the starter sounds odd, the thin shim is removed and a thicker one added. This is done until the problem goes away. Left alone, the starter will be ruined and even the flywheel eventually.
It sounds like the starter fit is too tight and the starter drive teeth are binding in the flywheel teeth.

Hope that helps. (I can’t believe an established garage is not aware of the shim packages; these have only been around about 40 years)???

i am so thankfull for your comment-i print it out and ive it to my garage -thanks again ,wulf

thank you so much for your help --will print it out and give it to he garage -wulf

Wow! what a great help you are!!! and i understand it ! i know it is impossible to ruin 6 starters on the row…the manufactures for starter or replacement can be not so bad–i grow up in east germany and drove russian old cars from the 60/70 (saparoshe or volga and moskviche-also i drove east german ‘‘trabant’’ and wartburg ,then i moved to the west and i get mercedes -bmw etc etc now in the us -i love to drive the 'american dream car ''eldorado1976 and it drives me crazy-the us was always better then the russian -but may be not the caddy starter (i was thinking)–my garage tested batteries and cabel(i get in the same time 3 different batteries (get replaced with warranty)i will print out the starter problem --will get my replacement and if the car runs get it to a other garage for specially starter testings–anytime i drive the car (everyday) i have to look for a parking spot with the tow car in mind-so he can tow it easy -no dep garages or valet for me–hope this problem get solved with your help !! thanks again -and i am glad to get to this forum and this web site --this would be a good car talk subject on the radio!!Wulf-

when i get a new starter from the garage -(all the times mostly) the starter works good for one day–the next days it sounds like the battery is not strong enough-or i start ones -the engine turns very slow then i start again and the engine starts but it sounds really like the battery is not good–then i went to the garage for battery testing -battery was good, then i just drove and hoped for the best - starting needs much longer then 5 seconds -i was giving starter a rest -but not longer then 1 minute-the car have lot of miles (don t know how much -but engine sounds good) i get this car in bad condition and spend a lot of money in replacing parts -taking care of etc -the best was always the engine -it runs great…

Here is a pic of what they look like. They’re also dirt cheap. GM has 2 styles; the straight and the offset.


Look for the ground wire between engine and body. In 72, there was a wide braided strap near the exhaust pipe that would get burned right off the car. Sometimes it is a smaller wire from the back of the engine to the firewall. If you can’t find one, make one.