1998 VW beetle, TDI, manual, 230k miles.
Turned the key the other day, and the starter just whined without actually turning the engine over. I turned the key back to off and pulled it out of the ignition, but the starter continued to whine for about a minute before stopping. I’m guessing some circuit got shorted to make the starter keep running without the key in ignition?
Push-started it down the hill, drove 2 hours then sat for 2 hours…and it started up just fine as if nothing had happened!
Since that day, I’ve tried to start it 10+ times…no noise, nothing, not even the little click of trying to start with a dead battery. When I push-start it, it drives without issue.
So my starter got stuck permanently on for 1 minute or more, stopped itself, and refused to work at all. One more time, 4 hours later, started up without a problem…and ever since then, total silence when I turn the key.
Thoughts? Some wires get jostled out of place on my ignition switch? Starter solenoid messing with me?