The starter motor relay is designed to switch a 12 volt power supply from the ignition to the starter motor solenoid. The starter motor relay may also be fitted to an older vehicle with a possible voltage loss on this 12 volt supply. A starter motor relay is a high current switch that may malfunction after 5-10 years in operation.
THINGS TO LOOK FOR
A starter motor relay if fitted as an after market item may malfunction if the wiring connected to it is not soldered correctly or the relay itself is not of good quality. Relays are only as good as the power connected to them, the connections and the relay itself must be of good quality. A clicking starter motor may be the cause of a faulty relay. Bridging the starter motor may determine this as being a faulty relay, faulty wiring or an intermittent problem with the inhibitor switch.
IS IT EXPENSIVE TO REPAIR?
A standard relay will cost around $25.00. Consult with your local auto electrician about fitting a relay as he might have the relays made up with the wiring, ready to install onto the starter motor.
TEMPORARY REPAIR AND LONG TERM REPLACEMENT
If you are stranded on the road and the relay decides to malfunction, bypassing the relay or bridging the starter motor might be the only way to start the engine enabling you to get home.