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Old 03-26-2012, 12:36 PM   #1
ShckByte
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Default 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Hi all,

New to the forum and have limited knowledge with engines, so please bare with me! I'm an artist, so know how to fabricate things and make them nice, but not so much the engine. Engine consists of:

350 CID Chevy Engine
Holly carburetor 4-barrel (would need to look at model if a problem)
Edelbrock manifold
Headers
Mild cam

(after this, don't know much about it)

My question is I went to start my car last week to go to work early in the morning and I heard a ticking (like my '69 Cougar did with it's Ignition Coil). Then it would slowly try to "whirl" up to start. Gas smell something fierce so I backed off and because I probably flooded the carburetor. Came back a few minutes later and it finally started up. Once going it idled rougher than usual, but did run and once it was running was ok.

I drove 10 minutes to work, turned it off, then back on and it was fine. Of course that night when leaving it had trouble starting again.

My limited conclusion was it was the starter or ignition coil...had the radiator checked and a small crack was in one of the hoses, so had replaced.

I didn't do anything prior to the car not working, because, again, I have limited knowledge with engines.

Any input would help and thanks!
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Old 03-26-2012, 12:46 PM   #2
Falcon67
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Hard to tell from your description - but if the "ticking" is coming from the starter solenoid, then it sounds like the battery is weak. Could also be the starter. Ignition coils don't make ticking noises. If the Holley is doing OK, one push all the way to the floor and release should be all it takes to put enough fuel in the manifold to start the car. That was your rough idle - way too much fuel.
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Old 03-26-2012, 12:51 PM   #3
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Sounds like either your battery connections are loose, dirty battery cable connections, battery is going bad or the starter is going bad. First check for loose battery cable connections and or dirty corroded connections. If corroded then remove the battery cables and clean them with a wire brush and a solution of 1 cup of water mixed with 1 tablespoon of baking soda. Just pour it on the battery posts and connections and it will foam up and disolve the corrosion. May need to repeat several times if really bad. Rinse with clean water. If problem still persists then have your battery tested under a load. Most auto parts stores can do this for you free and also have them check the amperage draw on your starter.
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Old 03-26-2012, 12:51 PM   #4
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Sounds like a weak battery to me. Any aftermarket accessories that could be to blame for a parasitic draw?
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:09 PM   #5
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

When you get in to start the car cold what do you do? Turn the key to start? Pump the gas pedal once and then turn to start? Pump the gas numerous times and then try to start? How long have you had the car? Is this a new problem or no history?

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Old 03-26-2012, 01:17 PM   #6
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Quote:
Originally Posted by samert111 View Post
Sounds like either your battery connections are loose, dirty battery cable connections, battery is going bad or the starter is going bad. First check for loose battery cable connections and or dirty corroded connections. If corroded then remove the battery cables and clean them with a wire brush and a solution of 1 cup of water mixed with 1 tablespoon of baking soda. Just pour it on the battery posts and connections and it will foam up and disolve the corrosion. May need to repeat several times if really bad. Rinse with clean water. If problem still persists then have your battery tested under a load. Most auto parts stores can do this for you free and also have them check the amperage draw on your starter.

This is step #1.

When the car fails to start, turn on the headlights. Then attempt to start it. If the headlights stay bright, you likely have a bad starter. If the headlights dim to almost out, you have either bad or corroded battery cables, or a bad battery.


The rough running is normal after you flooded the engine.
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:27 PM   #7
ShckByte
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Thank you all for your replies. The battery is fairly new and I did clean the negative terminal today because it had some corrosion. When I start the car, I try to turn the ignition first, then pump the accelerator some. I'm guessing based off everyone's suggestions that it's my starter. I'm going to replace it tomorrow morning and will let everyone know if that was the culprit.

I haven't had the car for long and yes, someone before put a lot into the engine, but was supposedly done at a garage with professional mechanics. So hopefully it is put together correctly! I know old cars come with troubles, just need to re-acquaint myself with old school muscle...as I am old school Thanks again!
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:28 PM   #8
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Tried this and the headlights were strong. Thanks.
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Old 03-26-2012, 03:29 PM   #9
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Good luck with the repair.

> just need to re-acquaint myself with old school muscle
Never thought of a 70 Monte Carlo as "muscle".
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Old 03-26-2012, 03:35 PM   #10
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Aftermarket stereo?
In my kids old Dodge pickup it will run the battery down if the stereo is cranked up and the headlights are on.....The alternator is just too small to keep up.
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Old 03-26-2012, 05:17 PM   #11
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

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> just need to re-acquaint myself with old school muscle
Never thought of a 70 Monte Carlo as "muscle".
Maybe you do. The 1970 Monte was available with the LS3 402 and the LS5 454 used in all A bodies like the Chevelle and the El Camino.
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Old 03-27-2012, 07:00 AM   #12
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Amen to that! As mentioned, Monte Carlo's have the same parts of a Chevelle, just not as desirable a car than it. But when done right, quite a nice car.

To all who helped yesterday, I cleaned my battery terminals and that seemed to help a lot. I never realized corrosion could keep a car from starting that bad. Not to mention it really wasn't that bad, but my car started right up this morning in 32 degree temps. I'll keep a watch on it, but did get a starter just in case. Thanks again.
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:00 AM   #13
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Are you a member of the first generation monte carlo club fgmcc. Check out the site, lots of good info and people who know everything about them. I have a 72 with a big block.
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:09 AM   #14
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

A little late but glad you got it fixed. As said I would check out http://www.firstgenmc.com/index.shtml Lots of good people and info on the site. Lets see some pics of your Monte.
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:23 AM   #15
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

Also check the the cable ends - the corrosion can work up inside the cable jacket and start eating away at it. It'd also be good to follow the negative cable down to where it hits the block and clean that connection. Also - check to make sure there is a jumper to the body from the engine. You'd typically find that at the back of a cylinder head to the firewall, but not always in that location. But there should be one somewhere. And it could not hurt to pull off the starter and clean the mounting on the starter and the block to make sure the current has a good connection to the negative side of the battery.

Sorry - I'm a Ford guy, so "1970" + "Monte Carlo" = "Disco". But then, I did like disco...
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:14 AM   #16
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

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Originally Posted by Falcon67 View Post
Also check the the cable ends - the corrosion can work up inside the cable jacket and start eating away at it. It'd also be good to follow the negative cable down to where it hits the block and clean that connection. Also - check to make sure there is a jumper to the body from the engine. You'd typically find that at the back of a cylinder head to the firewall, but not always in that location. But there should be one somewhere. And it could not hurt to pull off the starter and clean the mounting on the starter and the block to make sure the current has a good connection to the negative side of the battery.

Sorry - I'm a Ford guy, so "1970" + "Monte Carlo" = "Disco". But then, I did like disco...
You Ford guys just don't understand
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Old 03-27-2012, 11:21 AM   #17
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

I'll check all of that with my cables Falcon67 and thank you for the link MONTE7071. I need as much info as I can since this is my first older Chevy.

1970 and disco, I can see that, but still on the cusp of the glorious 60's, lol! They actually still made some nice muscle cars in the first quarter of the 70's!
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Old 03-27-2012, 11:24 AM   #18
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Default Re: 1970 Monte Carlo having trouble starting

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You Ford guys just don't understand
and they never, ever will!
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