LJ78 Prado starter contact replacement (1 Viewer)

Feb 7, 2006
Edmonton, AB
Hello all,
My truck was exhibiting poor starting performance. Betteries were good. The truck would start sometimes, and then just hear a click most of the time. I would hit the starter body with a piece of wood with better starting.
Monday evening it just quite working altogether, It meant I had to get a new starter in. I could not find a starter from NAPA, Canadian Tire and 4 wheel auto the same day. So the solution was to try to rebuild my existing starter after removal. I got mine from Jeff auto electric at 9419 – 51 Ave, Edmonton, AB. Smith Electric in north side also had these parts. It cost be only $20 in materials. The same starter I used in 85-86 2L toyota diesel pickup trucks. These kits are also available on Ebay.
Total install and assembly time was 4-5 hours for me because I fumbled a lot with my limited tools. With proper tools it can be brought down to less than 3 hours.
I took pics of the starter and solenoid when it was at my work bench. I did not take pics of the removal and installation process.
Here is the write up.
- Sockets/wrenches to remove you battery terminals. Could be 12mm or ½ inch depending on original and aftermarket.
- 36” extension to easily remove the starter bolts. I had smaller and had a really hard time. Do yourself a favour a get a long 3/8 or ½ inch extension from process auto or other retailer of your choice.
- Brake cleaner to clean all the leaking oil on top of your starter.
- Rags.
- Jack stand to raise the left side so you have more room underneath.
- 17mm sockets, wrenches for starter mounting bolts, nuts. Starter solenoid contact bolt nuts.
- 8 mm socket
- C- Clamp to hold the starter in place.
- Long breaker bars to loosen tighten the starter bolts.
- Rubber surgical gloves. It gets really messy down there.
- Safety glasses. There is a lot of muck thrown at you when looking up lying down
- Remove left wheel.
- Remove the negative battery terminal.
- Loosen and remove the fuel filter head from its mount. Donot have to unscrew the filter, just push it aside.
- Remove all the sensors leads, CPS, pump resistors, 2 other pump sensor leads. TPS sensor lead, butterfly valve vacuum solenoid lead (blue color).
- Remove the rubber boot covering the bettery side contact.
- Get a 17mm ratchet/wrench on top of the nut and after confirming that it seats properly loosen the nut few turns.
- There will be a round 1 wire connector on top of the starter body, detach the connector, one end goes into the starter.
- In the left wheelwell Push the rubber flap to a side.
- Remove the starter support bracket 12mm nut.
- The starter is held by two bolts. The top bolt goes into a threaded portion of the starter. The bottom bolt goes throught the bellhousing starter body and used a 17mm but on the other side.
- Get underneath the truck and look at the engine from behind the transfer case cross member, only then can you spot the two bolts clearly.
- Use your extension/s and imagination to get a socket on those two bolts and loosen them . On the lower bolt you have to use a breaker bar to rest against the frame to make sure the bolt/nut not just spinning.
- Remove the 17mm 2 bolts and 1 nut from the starter assembly.
- Loosen the 14mm starter support bracket with the earth cable.
- Remove the power cable 17mm nut and lock washer from the starter terminal.
- Get into the left wheel well and after making sure that nothing is attached to the starter, wiggle the starter out using the gap between the frame and fender wheel well.
- Clamp the starter in a upright position so that the small gear is pointed downward.
- Clean and wipe the starter body.
- Pull the large rubber boot off.
- Remove the 17mm nut holding the power cable to the bolt.
- The smaller boot I removed and checked but did not remove the wire. It is held by a star screw. Chances of stripping it therefore did not touch.
- Use 8mm socket to remove the 3 small bolts holding the solenoid cover in place. The cover might be stuck to so light strike it to dislodge it.
- Remove the cover, there will be a spring loaded plunger underneath, remove the plunger and spring.
- Make sure the ball underneath the spring stays in the hole. Do not tilt the starter now. It should remain straight up.
- Peel the black rubber gasket softly, you can reuse it if in good condition.
- You should be looking at the contacts now, orient yourself to the arrangement, and the single wire connected to the motor side.
- Remove the 17 mm bolt and take out the contacts from the housing.
- Pay attention to the sequence of insulators. The washers inside the insulators are concave and should be inserted back the same way they came out. Do not switch sides. Cleanup the inside with a cloth and clean the hole the plunger goes into.
- The battery side terminal bolt has serrations to make it a tight fit with the contact. It has to be hammered out/in the contact.
- Seat the contact in the correct orientations and put pressure on the contact face, so that it is pressed flat against the surface as the bolts are being tightened. I used a hemmer handle and body weight. The battery side terminal also has a black plastic O ring.
- After tightening the contacts down, clean the spring with solvent and install the spring and plunger into the hole.
- Seal up the unit with the rubber gasket and reattach the motor side cable to the correct terminal.
- To protect against oil intrusion, I used the gasket maker lightly behind the plastic, and also at the mating surface between the starter and engine.
- The unit can either be bench tested or reinstalled into the vehicle.
- Reinstall the reverse of assembly.

Now some pictures.

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