Aircraft Engine Starters

The following information is derived from the FAAs Service Difficulty Reports and Aviation Maintenance Alerts.


Lancair LC-40-550FG
Shorted Starter

Installed a rebuilt starter adapter and overhauled starter. On starting, the prop turned about 10 degrees and stopped. Pilot then smelled a burning odor and could not shut off the battery. The cowling was removed but the battery box was too hot to touch. Using gloves, the battery was disconnected. The starter (p/n 6462382) had a short in its field coils. There is no protection between the starter and battery so the starter & battery solenoid/relay stuck closed, the battery could not be shut off with the battery switch. Overhauled starter failed after 44 starts. Very dangerous due to a fire hazard.

Part total time: Unknown

Diamond DA40 DiamondStar
Sudden Failure

Starter had worked for two starts earlier in the day. On the third flight attempt, the starter didn’t work at all. Checked connections; they were tight and there was plenty of voltage indicated. Problem appeared to be in the starter (p/n 14924LS). Replacement starter worked fine.

Part total time: 292.0 hours

Cessna Model T210 Turbo Centurion
Failed Starter Relay

Pilot reported the aircraft lost all power on landing. Inspection revealed battery, starter and starter relay at fault. Aircraft had a burned wire and exhibited a strong electrical odor. Found the starter drive had stayed engaged and the starter acted like a generator, overcharging the electrical system and causing the battery to fail. Possible cause of the problem is that the starter relay (p/n PM2407) failed to open once the engine started.

Part total time: Unknown

Cirrus Design SR20
Internal Electrical Fault

After engine start, the MAP, engine percent power and fuel flow indications became inoperative. Inspection revealed the MAP/fuel flow indication wire loom assembly was charred and burned. The hot spot was attributed to a defective starter (p/n C24ST3) that showed evidence an internal electrical arc had burned a hole through the starter housing. The excessive heat melted the wire loom and compromised the instrumentation’s wiring.

Part total time: 417.0 hours

Cirrus Design SR22
Burned Starter

Starter failed on first attempt. When crew released starter switch aborting the start they noticed a small “puff of smoke” coming from under the cowling. Inspection revealed a burn mark on starter (p/n 657596) case at the base or attaching point on the outside. Starter circuit also shorted out.

Part total time: 88.0 hours


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