Citroen ZX 1.9TD fails to turn the starter motor over

16 May 2007
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Tyne and Wear
United Kingdom
I have a Citroen ZX 1.9TD which fails to turn the starter motor over.

With the ignition on and the switch turned to start, the voltage between the battery - terminal and the starter solenoid spade terminal is 12v. There is also 12v between the battery - terminal and the heavy current input feed to the solenoid and also 12v on the solenoid output to the starter motor.

When I check these voltages with reference to the engine block rather than the battery - terminal, I get readings of only 2v on the solenoid spade, the solenoid input feed and solenoid output to the starter.

I have cleaned and checked the battery terminals and the engine earth strap.

The lights are bright on full beam and do not dim when the key is turned to start.

All the dash panel indicators are showing bright but the battery indicator does show dim when turning the key to start.

I haven't had time to check anything else out so any advice would be much appreciated.
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Check resistance from gearbox to battery negative, might be a bad earth wire.

Have you got any jump leads?? If so connect 1 lead from battery NEGATIVE to the gearbox or engine and try and start it :D this will confirm a bad earth.
I've tried connecting a jump lead from the battery - negative terminal to the end of the starter motor casing securing bolt but this didn't help.

The resistance reading from the battery negative terminal to the gearbox casing is 0.5 Ohm, same reading when you short the test leads together.
Try using your jump lead to connect to the starter solenoid directly.
In effect bypassing the ignition switch.
Makes sure it's out of gear or you'll run yourself over.
This will confirm the ignition swicth wiring.
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I have had an intermittent problem of the ignition switching wire not making a good connection with the starter solenoid a few years ago. I spent a few hours to conclude the following:

After testing and tracing the single solenoid wire (yellow) - I pulled in another similar wire from the back of the ignition switch to the black plastic junction box area (f/n/s engine bay area inder the two relays). Using a crimping clip at both ends. The extra wire put on the outside of the wiring harness thru' the bulkhead and under the bottom widowscreen cover.

The result, I now have two wires doing the same job - getting the 12volts to the starter solenoid yellow wire which goes from the junction box area to the solenoid terminal. Been starting OK for about 8 years until today.

I assume this is one of those common ZX wiring faults - or just a dry joint - never did locate exact open circuit location.

However, connecting touching a wire between the solenoid terminal and the battery positive always turns the starter motor.

Hope this helps someone not going round in circles thinking it is the ignition switch, or starter motor. I this case just the yellow wire open circuit - sometimes. Ref: Haynes Manual page 12-33 Citroen ZX Diesel 1991 to 1993.