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CostHelper > Cars  > Starter Motor Replacement

Starter Motor Replacement Cost


How Much Does Starter Motor Replacement Cost?

 
low costAverage Starter Motor: $100-$400 (Part Only)average costEasy-Access Vehicle: $150-$600, installedhigh costDifficult-Access Vehicle: $300-$2,000, installed
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A starter motor is one component in the system that starts a car; when the key is turned, energy from the battery is sent to the starter solenoid and from there to the starter motor, which then cranks up the engine. In the past the starter solenoid and starter motor were separate components, but on most modern vehicles they are a single unit. Symptoms of a starter motor problem include a clicking or grinding sound when turning the key in the ignition, or if the engine starts slowly or doesn't start at all.

Typical costs:

  • A starter motor for an average passenger car typically costs $100-$400 for just the part, depending on the make and model of vehicle and whether the part is aftermarket (produced by a company other than the vehicle manufacturer, and typically less expensive) or OEM (original equipment manufacturer, produced by the vehicle's manufacturer and typically more expensive).
  • A starter motor for a limited-production or luxury vehicle can cost $250-$1,200 or more for just the part, depending on whether it is aftermarket or OEM. For example, AutoZone charges $120 or $144 for an aftermarket starter motor for a 2008 Ford Focus[1] .
  • Labor to replace a starter motor on a vehicle with relatively easy access typically takes about 30 minutes to two hours at $50-$120 an hour (ranging from an independent mechanic to a dealership). This brings typical total costs (parts and labor) to install a starter motor on an easy-access vehicle to $150-$600.
  • For example, RepairPal[2] estimates replacing a starter in a 2008 Toyota Camry costs $264-$482 in Trenton, NJ and $266-$484 in Sacramento, CA, with parts accounting for $208-$111 of the total and labor costing $56-$73, depending on location.
  • For a vehicle where the starter motor is buried under other parts that must be disconnected and removed to reach the starter motor, labor can take six to eight hours at $50-$120 an hour, bringing typical total costs to $300-$2,000, depending on whether the part is standard or rare, and aftermarket or OEM; and whether the work is done by an independent or chain repair shop, or a car dealership (typically more expensive).
  • For example, RepairPal[3] estimates that replacing a starter on a 2008 Lexus LS460 costs $1,225-$1,454 in Trenton, NJ and $1,149-$1357 in Sacramento, CA, with parts accounting for $641-$709 of the total cost, and labor costs of $508-$745, depending on location.
Related articles: Car Battery, Car Battery Charger, Alternator, Ignition Switch Replacement, Ignition Coil Replacement, Towing a Car

What should be included:
  • Replacing a starter motor can be relatively straightforward or difficult and time-consuming, depending on where the starter is located in the engine, and how many other parts have to be disconnected and removed to reach the starter motor. AutoZone provides a how-to video[4] and AutoMD offers a general overview of the process[5] , estimating the the do-it-yourself project takes about 2.1 hours and is of moderate complexity.
Additional costs:
  • The total cost may include a labor charge of an hour or so (at $50-$120 an hour) for diagnostic testing to determine whether the starter motor should be replaced.
Shopping for starter motor replacement:
  • Popular Mechanics explains how to diagnose a bad starter motor[6] and AutoZone provides a video explanation[7] of the diagnostic process.
  • A starter motor can be replaced by a car dealership, an independent repair shop, or car-repair chains like Pep Boys[8] or Sears[9] . Both the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence[10] and the International Automotive Technicians Network[11] provide a searchable directory of repair shops.
  • Consumer Reports lists tips for finding a good mechanic[12] .
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External Resources:
  1.  www.autozone.com/autozone/parts/Starter/_/N-93xl9?filterByKeyWord=starter+motor&fromStr...
  2.  repairpal.com/estimator
  3.  repairpal.com/estimator
  4.  www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ym9bgqbH-_4
  5.  www.automd.com/14/how-to-replace-a-starter/
  6.  www.popularmechanics.com/cars/how-to/maintenance/how-to-replace-a-cars-starter-motor-2
  7.  www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSTOmMAEjrg
  8.  storelocator.pepboys.com/pepboys/
  9.  www.sears.com/automotive/v-1020005
  10.  www.ase.com/Landing-Pages/Car-Owners/Find-a-Repair-Shop/Shop-Locator.aspx
  11.  autorepair.iatn.net/
  12.  www.consumerreports.org/cro/2012/12/how-to-find-a-great-car-mechanic/index.htm
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