Cars & Vehicles Auto Parts & Maintenance & Repairs

How to Replace a Starter in a 1997 Mercury Villager

    • 1). Raise the hood on your Villager and locate the van's battery. Loosen and remove the negative cable with a socket wrench. Wrap the terminal at the very end of the cable completely with electrical tape. Lay the cable down and away from the battery as well as other metals it may contact.

    • 2). Locate the starter at the rear of the Villager's engine compartment. It mounts on the top, right side--driver's side--of the engine, near the air filter assembly. The starter looks similar to a coffee thermos and has two wires coming from it. Both wires connect to the solenoid.

    • 3). Follow the black wire away from the solenoid 4 to 6 inches and you will see a small wiring harness plug. Unplug the wiring harness.

    • 4). Pinch and lift the rubber cap covering the second wire connected to the solenoid. Remove the nut holding the wire in place with your socket wrench. Take the wire off its connecting stud and position it to the side.

    • 5). Remove the starter's lower bolt with a socket wrench. Support the starter with one hand to prevent it from falling into the engine compartment. Remove the starter's top mounting bolt with your socket wrench.

    • 6). Pull the starter away from its mounting position and carefully lift it up out of the engine compartment. Lower your new starter down into the engine compartment just as you removed the old starter. Position the starter for mounting.

    • 7). Thread both lower and upper starter mounting bolts by hand. Tighten both bolts until you no longer can by hand. Set your 3/8-inch drive torque wrench to 18 foot-pounds and completely secure both of the bolts in place.

    • 8). Plug the black wire on your new starter back up to the wiring harness connection from which you unplugged the old wire during the removal process. Place the second wire back onto its connecting stud on the new starter. Hold the wire in place and install, then tighten its securing nut by hand. Set your 1/4-inch drive torque wrench to 75 inch-pounds and secure the nut in place. Place the rubber cap back over the nut and push down on it to secure it in place.

    • 9). Unwrap and discard the electrical tape on the negative cable's terminal. Connect the cable back to the battery and tighten its bolt by hand as well. Reset the 3/8-inch drive torque wrench to 12 foot-pounds and secure the cable to the battery. Shut the hood and start your Villager to test the repair.

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