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Old 11-22-2012, 12:02 PM   #1
Book1483
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Default 03 CRV Need advice on replacing starter

I'm working on replacing the starter on my 03 CRV. I've read some post saying it was possible to come from underneath. This is what I've been trying but I can't get to the upper bolt.
Other post have mention it's only possible to come from on top. From on top it appears that you'll have to remove the intake manifold.

Any advice will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 11-24-2012, 06:48 PM   #2
Book1483
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Default Re: 03 CRV Need advice on replacing starter

Job completed...Here is how I did it. Hopefully this thread can help someone in the future.

Why did I need to replace my starter?
Slow/Hard start over the winter. Finally no start during the fall.
The starter tried to turn the motor but it would stop right away. Something must have failed inside the starter causing the internal resistance to be high. This cause the current to be lowered so the motor doesn't develop the required torque to turn the engine.
Where is the starter motor?
The starter is located underneath the intake manifold. I removed the starter from underneath the car.
Removing the Starter Motor.
Be prepare to work in a very tight space.
0) Disconnect Battery.
1) Remove the plastic piece that is right under the front bumper.
2) Remove the knock sensor. You should be able to press down on the wire plug and unplug it. It presses down from the top of the sensor. It is a 27mm or if you prefer English units 1 and 1/16 inch. A deep socket will not work, there is not enough room. So if your buying a socket, be sure to buy a standard length.
3) Break the wire harness free from the 2 clips, 1 clips to the starter motor, this will have to come off for sure. The other clip is optional depending if it's going to be in your way or not. It was in my way.
4) Remove the upper starter bolt. This bolt right here is going to be what gives you HELL. You can't see it, and can barely touch it. It's located 180 degrees from the lower one. Put the socket on your ratchet and fish for the bolt. The size is 14mm. You'll want to use a deep socket about 3inches in length. You'll also want to use a 12 point socket, it will give you twice as much chance of slipping it over the bolt from the 6 point socket. Avoid flex neck ratchets because it will keep on flexing on you as you try to find the bolt. Here is where high end tools will shine, there is not much room to ratchet. If your ratchet has little backlash you'll probably be able to remove the bolt without removing the lower coolant hose. My craftsman ratchet had too much backlash in the gears, I needed 1 more degree of rotation to deliver the torque to the bolt. I had to remove the lower coolant hose to have enough room.
5) Remove the lower bolt. This one is pretty strait forward. It's a 17mm.
6) Remove the low current starter signal. This is the small wire that is located in the middle of the starter. You should be able to slip the cover boot back and just pull the plug. There is no clips to press down. Just pull but be sure to pull on the metal plug and not on the wire.
7) Pull the starter down. The high amperage wire is still attached but it is long enough to come all the way down with the starter.
8) Remove the high amperage wire. It is a 12mm. Be sure to note exactly how it is located on the starter so you can put it on the same way as the wire may had twisted as it came down. Install the high wire amperage onto new starter motor.
9) Install starter. The upper bolt will give you hell again. This is the best way I found to install the upper bolt. Slip the upper bolt into the starter before setting the starter into place. Carefully install the lower bolt and make sure the upper one doesn't slip out. You'll have to use a long extension (i used a long wrench) to push up on the starter so it's in place as your tightening the lower bolt. When the lower one is snug in place, the upper one should be lined up if you held the starter in the correct position as you were tightening the lower bolt. Now you'll have to fish for the upper bolt again and tighten it down. Be careful so you don't knock the bolt out of the hole.
10) The rest should go back strait forward. The small wire can be clipped back on once the starter is fully secured.
11) If you pulled the coolant hose, be sure to add the proper amount of coolant back in. You'll want to make sure the thermostat cycles a few times in order to see if your completely full.

Good Luck, I do believe this is a better way then having to remove the intake manifold to get at it from on top.
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Old 09-08-2013, 11:19 AM   #3
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Default Re: 03 CRV Need advice on replacing starter

Removing the starter from the bottom did not work for me. Way too much frustration and time wasting trying to locate the back bolt. Besides if your is in as tight as mine was you will never be able to get enough on it to break it loose under those circumstances. Here are the steps that will give you good access. Jack the car up about 8 inches and remove the splash guard below the radiator (when removing the retainer clips, use a small flat screwdriver to pop up the center peg and then pop out the outer portion after). Drain radiator, disconnect the three hoses and unplug the temp sensor (the hose on the far left needs to be wedged or tied back so the tranny fluid does not continue to run out). Remove the top shield that covers the radiator and remove the grill. Unplug the two fans and remove the two bolts that keep the fan on the left in place (closet to the battery). Remove the disconnect the top radiator hose and remove the one bolt that keeps the plastic overflow tank in place. Disconnect the overflow hose from the spout of the radiator. Unbolt the air intake from the cross brace and wedge it back out of the way. At this point you should be able to remove the radiator. Then pull the left fan out after. If you want you can take the cross brace loose for more wiggle room but it's not entirely necessary. Now unbolt the five visible bolts that keep the exhaust manifold in place. Without removing much else you can pull the manifold off and back far enough to then see the starter easily. You should disconnect the battery before taking the hot lead off the top of the starter. An arc could fry something in your electrical system easily. Nothing complicated here just keep track of what you disconnect and your bolts.
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Old 02-01-2014, 03:53 PM   #4
Tommie joe
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Book1483 View Post
I'm working on replacing the starter on my 03 CRV. I've read some post saying it was possible to come from underneath. This is what I've been trying but I can't get to the upper bolt.
Other post have mention it's only possible to come from on top. From on top it appears that you'll have to remove the intake manifold.

Any advice will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 02-01-2014, 03:57 PM   #5
Tommie joe
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Default Re: 03 CRV Need advice on replacing starter

Anyone replacing your starter take my advice and remove the intake manifold to access the upper bolt, it doesn't take much time and it's super easy to remove and put back on, I have a 2006 crv and just changed mine.
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Old 05-12-2014, 08:07 PM   #6
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Default Re: 03 CRV Need advice on replacing starter

Hi Tommie Joe,
When you removed the intake manifold on your 06 did you have to remove one screw that was underneath the intake from below the car? Also, did you remove the throttle body and if you did, did you replace the gasket for it or use the old one. Did you use a sealant on the gasket, what type of sealant did you use if you did? thanks for your time.
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